Amid all the IndyCar chaos, Marcus Ericsson was as cool as ever in St. Pete maelstrom IndyCar results, points after St. Petersburg GP

ST. SAINT PETERSBURG, Florida. When all the other NTT IndyCar Series drivers go crazy, it seems like that’s when Markus Eriksson is in perfect condition.

Sunday’s season opener was the latest testament to why the self-proclaimed “Sneaky Swede” became the tournament’s most successful stealth star.

Cars sped along the usually quiet highways of this city, vulgarities were broadcast on national television, and drivers crashed into tire railings in fits of anger and frustration.

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In the maelstrom of hostility and disappointment that was the St. Petersburg Grand Prix, Eriksson took his fourth career victory with little to no irritation.

“I’m happy with everything,” Eriksson said with a laugh. “So I’m fine.

The Chip Ganassi Racing driver was one of the few exceptions in one of the sharpest IndyCar races in recent memory.

Colton Herta, whose blood pressure can only rise above 60 when he hits a drum kit at 100 mph, was so mad at Willpower for being pumped up he called the reigning series champion an “ass”.

Team Penske’s Scott McLaughlin headed to carrier Andretti Autosport early to apologize and hug Romain Grosjean, who was seething after their battle for an apparent win ended with the two parting ways.

Even the always level-headed Felix Rosenquist seemed mildly annoyed after his old buddy Scott Dixon accidentally slammed him into a wall on turn four and set off a chain reaction on lap one that caused Devlin DeFrancesco to inadvertently pirouette with the 1800-pound car.

Rosenquist was eliminated, but Dixon recovered to finish third, apologizing several times to his former teammate. The six-time series champion would probably have won in St. Petersburg for the first time if not for the fifth and final yellow flag (for Grosjean and McLaughlin).

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But Dixon seemed happy to have made it out of the Sunshine State relatively unscathed.

“We will definitely take positive things out of it, but it was still a wild weekend for everyone,” said Dixon, who attributed the strong tailwind and turn 4 surface change to many veterans catching many veterans. , it was all over the store.

“I hope it was shown well on TV. It’s good for TV. Obviously you don’t want to see any accidents, but there are a lot of great contenders here right now. The field is very deep and you will see it all year round.”

It sounded so good on NBC that IndyCar and VICE Media should be getting together today to consider rescheduling the premiere of the new documentary series 100 Days to Indy until late April.

It was the “Move to Survive” style drama that the show and its stars craved, and at the very least, the upcoming episode should have a thick St. Petersburg riff.

How about hurrying up with a special preview by the end of March?

After the crew had an hour meeting with Pato O’Ward before the race last weekend. They’ll probably want to ask the Arrow McLaren star about the feeling of having your winning car inexplicably lose power at the bottom of the track for the precious few seconds it took Ericsson to take the lead.

“It’s just really annoying to give it away like that,” said O’Ward, who was unusually composed despite his heartbreak. “There was nothing else I could do. So yes, we just need to look at it. As a result, we scored excellent points. We started the year the way we wanted, right, but at the end of the day, these are very valuable points. We just lost 10 points.”

But the irony is to take nothing away from Eriksson, who lashed out when the moment was right, after relentlessly chasing O’Ward for several laps with the horsepower advantage.

Markus Eriksson has made it a habit to take selfies on the winning track with four IndyCar wins in less than two years (Brian Spurlock/Icon Sportswire via ).

In all four Ericsson victories, the bright red No. 8 Dallara-Honda also carried a red flag. Sunday’s red flag mattered far less than Detroit almost two years ago, when Eriksson won after Will Power failed to pull out of the lead after restarting the engines.

While red flag racing is “our favorite subject,” Eriksson also wanted to emphasize that luck doesn’t just benefit his team.

“It seems like when there’s a lot going on in a race and people make mistakes, we seem to be able to keep our cool,” Eriksson said. “And me, and the car, and the guys in strategy, and in pit stops, and in everything. And we seem to be able to get everything together in these situations.

“All these races are very intense. This is not an easy race. There’s a lot going on. You need to be ready for strategy adjustments, pit stops, restarts. There’s a lot going on and we seem to be very good at it. This is definitely one of our strengths. Not saying we can’t win without a red flag, but it definitely worked for us.”

Eriksson, 32, emerged as the top contender for the championship last year after winning the 107 Indy 500 (his car was strong, but a pit stop speeding ticket knocked his teammate Dixon’s strongest car out of the race).

Throughout the summer, reporters and rivals alike spoke in amazement about how the F1 veteran, who has only been racing ovals since 2019, has been consistently good everywhere.

Perhaps this skepticism will disappear much earlier, in 2023. Possibly by the time IndyCar gets to Texas Motor Speedway and Ericsson leads the scoring and enters the second race of the season on April 2nd.

“It seems like no matter what I do, people think that maybe I don’t deserve it or something,” he said. “I’ve won a lot of races and been at the top of the championship for the last couple of years so I’m just going to keep going.

AUTO: MAR 05 Series INDYCAR Streets of St. Petersburg
Markus Eriksson shared a kiss with his girlfriend Iris Tritsaris Yondal after winning the Firestone Grand Prix in St. Petersburg (Brian Spurlock/Icon Sportswire via ).

“Of course I didn’t want Pato to be in trouble, but from what I heard, the problem was that we were pushing and they made a mistake or he made a mistake. And then these things can happen. I felt sorry for Pato, but we were there to figure it out. If I hadn’t pressured him and stalked him, he would have been fine and we would have been second. But we were there right on his gearbox and we drove through.”

Ericsson doesn’t look offended the so-called doubters, mind you. Why should he be? Ultimately, the results will speak for themselves.

And when attention and universal respect inevitably begin to rise, he plans to welcome the pressure rather than wither.

“I’m here to win,” he said. “I want to win the championship. I want to win another 500. These are our goals and what other people say doesn’t really matter. But I think last year and the year before we proved that we can be ahead and run for the title. We just have to keep doing it and what people say doesn’t really bother me too much.

“Yeah. It’s going to be an interesting year.”

In fact, it certainly promises to be.

Pay attention to the hissing coil “100 Days to Indy”.

And keep these highlights of St. Pete is at hand.

IndyCar results and points after St. Petersburg Grand Prix: In one of the most chaotic season starts in NTT IndyCar Series history, Marcus Eriksson snatched victory from Pato O’Ward with four laps to go on Sunday.

It was the latest plot twist in a race full of drama that began on the first lap when Devlin DeFrancesco soared into the air after being hit on the bones by Markus Pedersen in turn 4.

Kyle Kirkwood was also airborne after colliding with Jack Harvey on the 41st lap restart.

There were no serious injuries, although Harvey was checked and released to a nearby hospital as a precaution.

Participated in the race many other incidentsincluding the contact that made Colton Herta soar on Willpower, and the crash between the dominant cars of Romain Grosjean and Scott McLaughlin.

Here are IndyCar results and points scored on the Sunday after the season opener of the Firestone Grand Prix in St. Petersburg:


Click here to see the official result of the 100 lap race at the 2.8-mile 14-turn street circuit in St. Petersburg, Florida. Click here to view a summary of the lap leaderboards.

Complete lap chart

Best section time

Full section details

Event Summary

Pit stop results

Here is the order of finish at the Firestone Grand Prix in St. Petersburg with starting position in brackets, driver, engine, laps driven and explanation (if any):

1. (4) Markus Eriksson, Honda, 100, running
2. (3) Pato O’Ward, Chevrolet, 100, running
3. (9) Scott Dixon, Honda, 100, running
4. (12) Alexander Rossi, Chevrolet, 100, Running
5. (22) Callum Ilott, Chevrolet, 100, running
6. (20) Graeme Rahal, Honda, 100, running
7. (10) Willpower, Chevy 100, Running
8. (7) Alex Palou, Honda, 100, running
9. (11) Christian Lundgaard, Honda, 100, running
10. (16) David Malukas, Honda, 100, running
11. (13) Marcus Armstrong, Honda, 100, running
12. (21) Agustin Canapino, Chevrolet, 100, Running
13. (6) Scott McLaughlin, Chevrolet, 99, running
14. (26) Conor Daly, Chevrolet, 99, running
15. (5) Kyle Kirkwood, Honda, 97, running
16. (23) Sting Ray Robb, Honda, 96, off course
17. (14) Joseph Newgarden, Chevrolet, 95, running
18. (1) Romain Grosjean, Honda, 71 years old,…


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