The 2019 Indy 500 has a second life on Sunday (May 24), when NBC airs Back Home Again: Indy 500 Special to fill in the blanks where this year’s race should be. The best part of the special with a mile is the winner Simon Pagenaud and runner-up Alexander Rossi tell us what it is is it right Thinking this time last year.
The duo didn’t have much time to talk, but their interview segment did reveal a number of things the audience might not have known before. Here is the most interesting and entertaining part of Pagenaud and Rossi’s comments. If you missed Back Home Again: Indy 500 Special, You can see highlights from the broadcast here.
1. Alexander Rossi more than triggers problems
Everyone remembers seeing Alexander Rossi looking annoyed when the fuel in entry No. 22 NAPA Auto Parts Andretti Autosport cannot damage the car. Seeing him slamming his hand on the steering wheel and curious “What are we doing?!” is one of the most fierce moments in racing.
What new information is Rossi shows that this is not the first time this has happened. “Three of our four years have had some sort of triggering problem in this race in particular,” he told NBC Sports host Mike Tirico. That was surprising, especially because Andretti Autosport, who was always the team to be beaten at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
But in between the incident, shouted Helio Castroneves, and brandishing his fist Oriol ServiaRossi certainly saw his blood pressure surge several times last year. However, even with all that, he only missed one more victory.
2. Pit lane is not relax
Motor sport enthusiasts know how races can be won or defeated in the pit lane, and there were many pit accidents in Indianapolis 500 years ago. Will power was one of two racers who crashed into a crew member while fighting sheep, so Power had to go to the back of the field. It’s really impressive to see Power fight back to fifth.
And if Rossi doesn’t have that triggering problem, it’s entirely possible that he could win his second Indy 500 title. But he also pointed out something IndyCar’s viewers might not have thought of: that slowing the pit lane is no less stressful. In fact, it could be more because they think of getting into their pit box properly and nailing down that perfect stop.
If that doesn’t work, then you just channel that frustration and become angry for the rest of the race.
– Simon Pagenaud (@simonpagenaud) May 24, 2020
3. Simon Pagenaud did not initially like his car
Pagenaud dominated the 2019 Indy 500, leading more than 100 race rounds, so it was surprising to hear that he was initially unsure of the Penske Team Menards No. entry. 22. Simon revealed that even when he jumped into the leadership early last Memorial Day weekend, he was still a little nervous about how the car would perform.
It turns out he doesn’t need to worry; he ended up front for most of the race. The biggest concern is not the car’s mechanics, but if Pagenaud runs out of fuel before the checkered flag, because he runs so hard and leads so much! It’s not a bad problem to have, especially if it leads to the victory of the Indianapolis 500, a sweep of the whole of May, and a place in IndyCar history.
Now there is only one question for this year’s race: as Pagenaud and Rossi speculated during this special, will a Pagenaud who is skilled at breaking the concept finally break the rules?
The NTT IndyCar series kicks off the 2020 season on Saturday, June 6 with Genesys 300 from Texas Motor Speedway. The race will air at 8:00 at night. ET / 5:00 PM PT on NBC.
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