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Qualifying Report: Firestone Grand Prix of Monterey

MONTEREY, Calif. (June 22, 2024) -- WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca is one of the most spectacular tracks in the NTT INDYCAR Series and one of the most challenging to get right. With its many elevation changes and famed "Corkscrew," a series of turns down a mountainside, drivers found themselves spinning off numerous times during the two practice sessions prior to qualifying for the Firestone Grand Prix of Monterey today.


Both Santino Ferrucci and Sting Ray Robb spun off track -- as did many others -- but the Foyt cars emerged unscathed. Ferrucci's spin in the Corkscrew yesterday drew the admiration of the on-air talent who commented on his "execution" as he drove backwards down the Corkscrew and then did a 180 degree turn to point the car in the correct direction and continue on.


"I think we did a great job considering our recovery from the spin this morning which put us back a set of tires," said Ferrucci, who noted that yesterday's recovery stemmed from his iRacing (video game) experience. "Things you do in iRacing you usually don't see on TV."


Commenting on his qualifying run, he revealed, "I wish I'd gapped myself a little bit better for our run on the reds, but overall, I felt the Sexton Properties Chevrolet was pretty good. I feel like we had a legitimate shot at advancing (to the next round). Now we'll start 17th. We have a very good race car, so we'll move forward, pretty easily I hope."

Robb, who had some good practice runs, was disappointed with his qualifying run on the 11-turn, 2.238-mile track. Unfortunately, his first hot lap on the alternate (red) compound tires (the money lap) was impeded by a slower car but the infraction was not called by the stewards. He will start 25th in the No. 41 Goodheart/ Chevrolet. Like his teammate, Robb will be focused on moving forward at the track where he scored his best finish last year - 12th.


Alex Palou won the NTT P-1 Award for the second time this season with his time of 1 minute, 7.1465 seconds (119.988 mph). Kyle Kirkwood, Felix Rosenqvist, Colton Herta, Alexander Rossi and Christian Lundgaard rounded out the Firestone Fast 6.


Teams will have a 30-minute warmup, which will be streamed on Peacock starting at 3 p.m. ET. The USA Network will broadcast the 95-lap race tomorrow evening starting at 6 p.m. ET. The race will be streamed live on Peacock and broadcast on the INDYCAR Radio Network.


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