Simon Pagenaud is one of the most determined and most likable drivers in the NTT IndyCar Series. He is one man who focuses on the future and never bothers about the past. You could prove this if you asked him to reflect on his winless streak back in 2017.
Since 2017, Pagenaud has not visited Victory Lane in Sonoma for reasons that he has not disclosed. The 2016 NTT IndyCar Series champion is one of just two drivers that have won on 2.439-mile, 14 turn road course. His rebound race could come in Saturday’s IndyCar Grand Prix at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. In 2014, Pagenaud won the inaugural road course event at IMS.
Kyle Moyer, the team Penske IndyCar Program General Manager, said that it would seem to be huge for Simon to win any race. He also added the last year’s results were disappointing for Team Penske as they had only two podia. He and the rest of the teammates have high hope that Pagenaud will win this year for he has been able to find the speed to race from the back to respectable finishes at St. Petersburg (7th) Barber Motorsports Park (9th) and Long Beach (6th).
This year is the final year of Pagenaud contract with Team Penske. Moyer said that he needs to get winning, deal or not. He also added that Pagenaud has the chance to turn around his fortunes and battle with likes of his teammates, Will Power and Josef Newgarden as well as rivals, Alexander Rossi and Scott Dixon. Pagenaud is 79 points behind the leader Newgarden.
Pagenaud’s engineer, Ben Bretzman said that they need to get a win to take off from there. He also reported that Pagenaud is ready to breakout as his confidence has grown.
Pagenaud biggest goal this year is to win the Indianapolis 500 and to win another championship. He got his first win in the inaugural IndyCar Grand Prix in 2013 whereas his 2016 victory in the IndyCar Grand Prix counted much for his championship.
NBC Sports will show live coverage of the INDYCAR Grand Prix from Indianapolis Motor Speedway this Saturday at 3 p.m. The extended coverage from Indianapolis includes extensive practice, qualifying and racing programming across NBC, NBCSN, NBC Sports.com, NBC Sports Gold’s INDYCAR Pass and NBC Sports up.
This week’s live coverage from Indianapolis begins Friday at 9 a.m.ET with practice one exclusively on NBC Sports Gold’s INDYCAR Pass, practice two will follow at 12:30 p.m. ET. Coverage continues with qualifying live on NBCSN and INDYCAR Pass on Friday at 4:30 p.m.ET. INDYCAR Pass will stream warm-up on Saturday at 11:15 a.m.ET before the race coverage on Saturday at 3 p.m. ET on NBC.