Bringing you up to speed – Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg

Photo credit: Chris Jones/IndyCar

The Streets of St. Petersburg, Florida played host to the NTT IndyCar Series’ first of four scheduled street circuits of the 2021 season.

Colton Herta delivers beatdown on field.

  • The Andretti Autosport driver won from pole by leading a race-record 97 of 100 laps.
  • The win is the 21-year-old’s 4th overall and his third from the pole, the first two coming at Laguna Seca in 2019 and Mid-Ohio in 2020.
  • The win is a welcome shot in the arm for the driver of the No. 26 Gainbridge Honda after an early crash with Josef Newgarden at Barber left him 22nd.
  • He vaulted from 22nd to 4th in the series standings, five points behind points leader Alex Palou.

Team Penske quartet rebounds to finish 2nd, 3rd, 8th, and 11th

  • Josef Newgarden led the Team Penske brigade with a second-place finish after starting third.
    • He held the runner up spot for much of the day and only came close to Herta when two late yellow flags bunched the field.
    • The podium finish elevated Newgarden to 10th in the standings after an uncharacteristic crash at Barber left him 23rd in the order.
  • Simon Pagenaud overtook Jack Harvey on the first pitstop exchange and scored his first podium since his win at Iowa last July.
  • Will Power was the race’s biggest mover as he utilized a three-stop strategy to recover to eighth after a dismal 20th place spot on the grid.
  • Penske’s lone rookie Scott McLaughlin scored his best IndyCar finish to date in 11th.

Jack Harvey delivers first top five in nearly two years with fourth place finish.

  • The Meyer Shank Racing driver qualified on outside pole and remained in the top five all day to take a fourth-place finish.
  • The outcome was the Briton’s first top five since his maiden podium at the Grand Prix of Indianapolis in 2019.

Rinus VeeKay and Sebastien Bourdais score second top tens in a row

  • Ed Carpenter Racing’s Rinus VeeKay continued his good start to his sophomore IndyCar season with a ninth place finish.
  • Sebastien Bourdais survived an early minor collision with Simon Pagenaud to notch his second straight top ten finish in his maiden full season with AJ Foyt Racing.

Collision ruins potential top tens for Graham Rahal and Alexander Rossi

  • Graham Rahal and Alexander Rossi’s chances for top tens came to a grinding halt on Lap 37 when they crashed in Turn 5.
  • Rahal ran as high as fourth while Rossi ran in seventh the entire opening stint.
  • Rahal continued on to finish 15th while Rossi lost two laps trying to get re-fired and finished 21st.

Jimmie Johnson brings out two yellows in second IndyCar race

  • Jimmie Johnson’s second IndyCar race ended a lackluster 22nd as he brought out two yellow flags – one on Lap 17 for locking up and hitting the barriers and the second on Lap 73 when he spun in Turn 3.

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