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“Angry” Ericsson vows to get Indy 500 revenge after loss that “still hurts”

2022 Indianapolis 500 winner Marcus Ericsson has vowed to get “revenge” for his controversial final-lap defeat at the hands of Team Penske’s Josef Newgarden last year.

Marcus Ericsson, Chip Ganassi Racing Honda, Josef Newgarden, Team Penske Chevrolet, Santino Ferrucci, A.J. Foyt Enterprises Chevrolet

Photo by: Chris duMond / Motorsport Images

The ex-Formula 1 racer, who moved to Andretti Global’s IndyCar team from Chip Ganassi Racing on the off-season, came within 0.0974s of being the first back-to-back winner of the Indy 500 since Helio Castroneves achieved the feat in 2002.
The race was red flagged while he was leading and, instead of ending under yellow as in previous years, the race was restarted for an unprecedented one-lap shootout, during which Newgarden passed him. 
He says that painful finish gives him huge motivation for 2024.
“I've been working very hard to prepare for the 500 this year,” said Ericsson. “I felt… angry is probably a good word after last year, and disappointed. 
“I've used that as motivation to work really hard all winter with the team to make sure we are in a position where we can win. So, I feel confident that we're gonna have cars to do that, and I know exactly what I need from the car, balance-wise, to be up there. 
“It gives me confidence going into the speedway running that we should be in the mix. There’s gonna be a lot of good cars out there, so I think it'll be tighter than ever because I feel like a lot of teams have been pushing really hard on their speedway packages. 
“It's just when you're talking around the paddock, it feels like everyone has really been focusing a lot on it. It'll be interesting, but I have good confidence that we should be in the mix.”
Marcus Ericsson, Andretti Global Honda

Marcus Ericsson, Andretti Global Honda

Photo by: Richard Dole / Motorsport Images

When asked by Motorsport.com if he carries a chip on his shoulder about last year’s controversial defeat, he replied: “Yeah, I mean, for sure.
“When you're that close to going back-to-back, the first driver in over 20 years [to do that] and for a minute or so I was pretty certain I had it. That for sure still hurts that it got sort of, in a way, taken away from you. 
“I'm not walking around angry or pissed off about it now, I’ve used that as motivation to work even harder. It's just like more of a feeling of I want to get it back or, you know, get revenge. 
“I don't know if that's the right word, but I wanna get it back for sure.”
Ericsson confirmed that Andretti Global is pushing hard on its speedway squad of cars, which was aided by it downsizing to three full-season entries – plus Marco Andretti as an Indy 500 one-off.
“I have three cars this year,” Ericsson said. “I have a backup car, I have a primary car, I have a superspeedway car so, yeah, life is good!”

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