Rosenqvist to test IndyCar with Ganassi (2nd Update)
|Felix Rosenqvist is a major talent|
UPDATE The Ganassi IndyCar team will give Formula E racer Felix Rosenqvist another test outing at Mid-Ohio this week, alongside championship leader Scott Dixon, Autosport reports. Ex-Formula 1 and Indycar driver Stefan Johansson, who manages both Dixon and Rosenqvist, could not be reached for comment, and the Ganassi team was also tight-lipped over the plan for Thursday's test.
07/22/16 Indy Lights multiple-race winner Felix Rosenqvist got his first taste of IndyCar power and downforce at Mid-Ohio on Thursday as he split the test day with Scott Dixon in the No. 9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevy. According to multiple racer.com sources, the 24-year-old set the fastest unofficial lap among the first-time Verizon IndyCar Series drivers during his morning outing.
Team Penske's Will Power is said to have led that morning sessions with a lap of 1m04.5sec around the 2.3-mile road course in the No. 12 Chevy. Penske teammates Helio Castroneves and Simon Pagenaud followed Power in second and third and Rosenqvist was fourth with a 1m04.8sec lap.
"I think he did a really good job," Dixon told RACER's Marshal Pruett. "If he's placed in the right situation, I think he can really thrive. The cool thing is he has a ton of experience; he's driven a lot of open-wheel cars and a lot of sports cars, so for a young guy, he's got a lot of miles under him. He didn't fall off at all, and was better than some of the Penske guys. He's well-rounded and picks things up quickly. I think he's a heck of a talent and I hope he finds something."
"It's the quickest car I've ever driven with the most downforce," the promising Swede told racer.com. "It's very grippy and physical. Ganassi have a great car and everything is done in a very professional way so you can just concentrate on driving. It's been really good to work with their team."
"I haven't seen any official times, but we were not far away in terms of speed," he added. "The first step was to make sure I was comfortable in the car, and then the next step was to push. For a first day in a new car on a new track, it went very well. It wears you out a little bit; your neck most of all. I spoke with [Chip Ganassi Racing's] Tony Kanaan, and he said it's the worst place for physical demands. You feel it after getting out of the car, but it's this way for every [rookie] driver."
With three Indy Lights race wins for Brian Belardi’s during his American debut, Rosenqvist has been a breakout star in IndyCar’s top feeder series. Although he’s been forced to miss some rounds due to a full-season sports car commitment in Europe, Rosenqvist has made enough of an impression to earn a testing invite from Ganassi and hopes it will lead to more opportunities.
“I think it’s every driver’s dream to be in one of these cars for a living,” he said. “It’s quite early in the silly season, and I have some talks in Europe, but now I know this team and put my name on the IndyCar radar. I’ve been a formula driver for some time now and I’ve never had a chance to drive something in Formula 1 or IndyCar, and it’s really cool to do this and know that I can be fast. Hopefully the test today can help me somehow.” racer.com
07/19/16 European Formula 3 champion and Indy Lights frontrunner Felix Rosenqvist will get his first taste of IndyCar machinery on Thursday as he joins Chip Ganassi Racing for a one-day test at Mid-Ohio according to Jamie Klein of Motorsports.com.
Fresh from his double Indy Lights victory at Toronto last weekend, the 24-year-old will become the first Swede to drive an Indy car since 1998 IRL champion Kenny Brack contested the Indianapolis 500 in 2005.
"This is an incredible opportunity for me,” said Rosenqvist. “The Verizon IndyCar Series is the biggest and fastest racing series in America, and it’s every driver’s dream to be given a chance like this - and I intend to make the most of it.
"It’s especially thrilling to be doing this with Chip Ganassi Racing, a top team steeped in history that I grew up following on TV.
"Hopefully I can do a solid job and I’m sure this will be a truly unique experience.”
Rosenqvist currently lies seventh in the Indy Lights points standings, having also won at St. Petersburg in March prior to his Toronto wins, driving for Belardi Auto Racing.
He is also a reserve driver for Mercedes in the DTM, his commitments with the German marque forcing him to miss the Indy Lights rounds at Road America and Iowa. Jamie Klein/Motorsports.com