Verizon IndyCar Series Sunoco rookie Alexander Rossi has had an incredible first season in the sport.
The Californian who joined Andretti Autosport in partnership with Bryan Herta on February 23 2016 after being passed over for the vacant Manor Racing Formula One seat went into the opening race of the year, the Firestone Grand Prix of St Petersburg having had no pre-season testing.
Rossi started his first race from 18th place and came through the field to finish in 12th place, in his first oval race, Rossi started both started and finished the race in 14th place.
At the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach Rossi started the race in 16th place and finished the event in 20th place. At the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama, Rossi started the race in 20th and finished the event in 15th place.
At the Angie’s List Grand Prix of Indianapolis on May 14, Rossi scored his first top ten finish of his Verizon IndyCar Series career, finishing the race in 10th place having started the event from 12th.
On May 20, Andretti Autosport announced that NAPA Auto Parts would be the primary sponsor to Rossi’s No.98 Honda for the 100th running of the Indianapolis 500 presented by PennGrade Motor Oil. Rossi started the race from just outside the top ten in 11th place and was extremely quick throughout the race just biding his time and waiting for the right opportunity.
Rossi made his into the lead of the race however there was a problem, he was short on fuel, as the team calculated the numbers Rossi continued to lead the race when his strategist Bryan Herta came on the phone and said lift and coast, lift and coast, Rossi did exactly that in doing so won the 100th running of the Indianapolis 500 presented by PennGrade Motor Oil.
Rossi heads into the final race of the season, the GoPro Grand Prix of Sonoma in 11th place in the series standings of 370 points.