SALINAS, Calif – Felix Rosenqvist was the hot pick to win Sunday’s NTT IndyCar Series season finale at the WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca. The Chip Ganassi Racing driver has been quick all weekend with being in the top three of literally every session run.
He was third quickest in both test sessions on Thursday. He was second quickest in both practice sessions on Friday. He was fastest in final practice on Saturday.
No brainer right?
Unfortunately, he spun his No. 10 Honda during his qualifying run around the 2.258-mile road course which resulted in him losing his fastest two laps. So, despite being fourth quick in the second group of the opening round, he wouldn’t advance.
Rosenqvist will roll off 14th for the Firestone Grand Prix of Monterey (2:30 p.m. ET/NBC/INDYCAR Radio Network).
That’s going to be difficult to come back from.
18 of the 22 races in Laguna Seca have been won from the front row. 29 of the last 32 Indy Car races have been won from a starting spot in the top eight. 13 of the 16 races run in 2019 have been won from the top six. Furthermore, eight of the last 12 races on natural road courses like this one were won from the front row and just one past eighth.
For Rosenqvist, that means his odds of winning are long.
It’s a shame too because he finished second in each of the last two natural road courses on the season and had the car to beat this weekend.