Justin finished Sunday's Honda Grand Prix of St. Petersburg in ninth place after an eventful race on a drying track. Starting from third on the grid, he took the No. 02 McDonald's car into the lead on Lap 16 and ran comfortably in first place for...
Justin finished Sunday's Honda Grand Prix of St. Petersburg in ninth place after an eventful race on a drying track. Starting from third on the grid, he took the No. 02 McDonald's car into the lead on Lap 16 and ran comfortably in first place for 18 laps. However, as the track dried, the choice between Firestone's rain tyre or slicks became finely balanced. Justin found himself on the wrong tyres when it counted and out of touch with the leading pack during the critical final stages of the race.
Though disappointed with the result, Justin was impressed with the pace the team showed and was quick to congratulate Newman/Haas/Lanigan Racing team-mate Graham Rahal who took victory in the No. 06 Hole in the Wall Camps car in his first IndyCar Series event. The 19 year old made history by becoming the youngest driver to win a major open-wheel race. Helio Castroneves finished second for Team Penske and Andretti Green Racing's Tony Kanaan finished third.
"I'm a little disappointed with the result, but very pleased with the way that everyone has worked", said Justin. "I felt that the McDonald's car was very quick and we are capable of winning. But circumstances didn't work out, so if I didn't win I was very pleased that Graham did. It is obviously a great car and he's a great team-mate to have. I'm very happy that he was able to win in his first IndyCar Series start. I think we will see a lot more of Graham."
Justin's next race will be the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach on 20th April, when all of the Champ Car teams from 2007 get their Panoz DP01s back on track for the last time. As well as being a three day celebration of Champ Car racing, the race will be an IndyCar Series points-paying event for Justin, Graham and the seven other current IndyCar Series drivers.