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Brake issues hindered Rosenqvist’s chances of IndyCar victory in Long Beach

Felix Rosenqvist was unable to convert his first IndyCar pole for Meyer Shank Racing into a win at Long Beach as brake problems set in soon after the start.

Felix Rosenqvist, Meyer Shank Racing Honda

Photo by: Jake Galstad / Motorsport Images

The Swede led opening lap, which started under caution due to a race control issue, but quickly lost out to fellow front row starter Will Power once the green flag came out on lap two of 85.

It proved to mark the beginning of a downward slide, as Rosenqvist quickly fell to fourth by lap five. He had dropped two more places across the next three laps and never managed to recover the lost track position on his way to finishing ninth.

“The opening segment is where we essentially lost the race,” Rosenqvist said.

“We had some issues with the brakes: they were running really hot, so I was really off on my bias and had to chase it.

“We really lacked braking performance, which meant I kept getting passed in Turn 1, inside and outside. Without braking confidence, you can't protect, and you can't go forward.

“But the team did well despite that, we kept our heads cool - even though it sucked to go plummeting down the field.”

With two front row starts and two top 10 results from the opening two points-paying races of 2024, having finished seventh in St. Petersburg before the disqualification of Team Penske drivers Josef Newgarden and Scott McLaughlin for push-to-pass violations elevated him two positions, Rosenqvist sits sixth in the standings just 24 points behind leader Scott Dixon.

Felix Rosenqvist, Meyer Shank Racing Honda

Felix Rosenqvist, Meyer Shank Racing Honda

Photo by: Josh Tons / Motorsport Images

“We are looking at the big picture and a top 10 result for the team is still really great for us,” said Rosenqivst, who also finished third in the non-points event at The Thermal Club last month.

“Of course, we would have liked to translate the pole into a win, but this is good momentum for everyone.”

Now, the attention shifts to the upcoming weekend’s round at Barber Motorsports Park, a track that Rosenqvist has two top 10 results in four starts.

“We tested there a couple of weeks ago, which is helpful,” Rosenqvist said.

“It’s good to have that under your belt going into the race weekend where most of the teams haven’t.

“I still think it’s a track that we pointed out that we want to work on. I feel pretty good about it, I’m not 100% that our package will be as strong as it was here, but I think we have a good baseline to work with.

“First road course of the season and I’m excited to see how the car is going to feel.”

Watch: Round 3 - Long Beach: 6 Minute Highlights

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