Chip Ganassi Racing’s reigning Verizon IndyCar Series champion Scott Dixon in the No.9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet started Sunday’s Firestone Grand Prix of St Petersburg from fourth place on the grid and following a lengthily stop to try and clear a a clogged radiator which was overheating Dixon recovered from 14th place to end the race in seventh.
Speaking following the event, the New Zealander commented by saying:
Unfortunately we had a radiator that was clogged and overheating and there was nothing we could do. We had to pit off sequence so the Target team could get it cleaned up. That stop took a while and put us to the back. We were fortunate that the one big incident took half the field out and let us gain some positions back. But if we didn’t have that problem early on, we were definitely looking at a podium finish.
Tony Kanaan in the No.10 NTT Data Chevrolet was disappointed with his day despite coming through the field from 19th place on the grid to finish the race in 9th place. Speaking afterwards the Brazilian said:
Not the day we wanted to have for the NTTA Data team. We fought and fought and sometimes you just have to make the best of the situation. Given the way the race played out for us, I was happy to get the car home and salvage the race with a 10th-place finish.
Charlie Kimball in the No.83 NovoNordisk Chevrolet started the race from 13th place on the grid ended the race by rounding out the top ten just behind TK. Speaking following the race Kimball stated:
It was quite an exciting day for the first race of the season. The Novo Nordisk Chip Ganassi Racing car was really quick when we got in clean air. Unfortunately we had a few mechanical gremlins that crept in during the last third of the race. I’m happy we were able to come away with a top-10 finish. The team today was great and really had clean pit stops so thanks again to them. A lot of credit to all the guys. We’ll figure it all out and come back stronger.
Verizon IndyCar Series rookie Max Chilton in the No.8 Gallagher Chevrolet started the race from 16th place on the grid and managed to avoid trouble coming home in 17th place just behind Graham Rahal in the No.15 Steak N’Shake Honda.
Speaking following the race, Chilton stated:
It looked like a very promising day from the start for the Gallagher team as we were doing the same lap times as the majority of the cars around us. We were working our way forward and up to around P10 when we had an overheating problem. We had to make a long stop to clean out the radiator and get the temps back down, and then another final stop to address the same issue.