Andersen Racing's Krohn Impresses Everybody In Corning 100 Firestone Indy Lights Race At Watkins Glen International Sunday
WATKINS GLEN, N.Y., July 4 - Andersen Racing's Anders Krohn ran in fourth place for six laps and in fifth place for another 14 laps before a problem with his car's gearbox relegated him to a tenth-place finish in Sunday's 30-lap Corning 100 Firestone Indy Lights race at Watkins Glen International.
Running in the top five for two-thirds of the race was an impressive accomplishment for the rookie from Stavanger, Norway and Houston, Texas, who was making his first Firestone Indy Lights appearance ever.
Krohn, 22, drove the Andersen Racing No. 4 with Logi Trans as his primary sponsor. Other support came from Trallfa Industries, Colosseum Dental, Norse Cutting & Abandonment and the team's primary sponsor, Allied Building Products Corp.
Krohn qualified tenth but he actually got to start eighth. Two drivers who qualified above him, Charlie Kimball and Gustavo Yacaman, had to start the race at the rear of the field due to engine changes after qualifying.
No one would have thought Krohn was a rookie when he blasted from eighth to fifth on lap one, passing Philip Major, Martin Plowman and Adrian Campos Jr. before Pippa Mann and Dan Clarke crashed in Turn 9 to bring out the first full-course caution.
Stefan Wilson, the driver who was right in front of Krohn in fourth place, had problems on the restart on lap five and Krohn got around him to vault into fourth place on lap six. At that point he trailed only the polesitter, James Hinchcliffe; the eventual winner, J.K. Vernay, and Sebastian Saavedra.
He set his fastest lap of the race on lap 10 with a time of 1:41.2010 for an average speed of 119.869 miles per hour for the 3.37-mile, 11-turn road course.
Plowman got around Krohn in the Bus Stop working lap 12 to push him to fifth. Two laps later another full-course caution waved to retrieve the car of Stefan Wilson, which had blown an engine, and to spread oil-dry on the frontstretch.
Krohn was still in fifth place on lap 19 when the driver who was right behind him, Yacaman, spun in the Bus Stop. The two never touched but Krohn had to take evasive action through the grass.
Krohn was already dealing with the gearbox issues at that point, and dropped out of the top five for the first time during the race on lap 21 when James Winslow passed him. His goal from that point on was to simply finish. He did just that, coming in tenth.
Krohn is the first driver to compete in all three formula car classes in which the Palmetto, Fla.-based Andersen Racing team is involved: Formula 2000, the Star Mazda Championship presented by Goodyear and Firestone Indy Lights. The Road to Indy ladder system consists of the "Cooper Tires Presents the USF2000 National Championship Powered by Mazda," Star Mazda and then Firestone Indy Lights prior to the IZOD IndyCar Series.
Krohn is currently second in the Star Mazda point standings.
Krohn's post-race quote follows:
"It was the gearbox. When I hit the brakes going into the corners it went into neutral. I had to do about 15 downshifts going into Turn 1. I have blisters on my hands from it. I don't know what we broke in the gearbox, but we broke something.
"We were running in fourth place comfortably. I was so comfortable I thought for sure I could get third if we had another restart. But halfway through the race was when the gearbox started acting up. After that, all my focus was just on finishing the race.
"We were running so strong! I came in tenth but it was one of the best days of my life ever. This was my first Firestone Indy Lights race ever, but we showed we could run with the big boys! I'm so happy.
"Yacaman and I never touched. We both braked way too late. He spun and I cut through the grass, but at that point I was already having gearbox issues.
"On the start I took three people in Turn 1 on the outside, and it stuck. Then I pressured Plowman into a mistake at the toe of the boot. He wasn't really blocking me; he was just letting me know I had to earn it.
"What a fantastic race we had today! I just have to thank Logi Trans and Andersen Racing for this opportunity. It's not every day you get to run in a Firestone Indy Lights race. I feel like I belong in one of these cars.
"I have to thank the guys at Andersen Racing for giving me such a great car after the electrical problems we had yesterday.
"Today was a big motivation for me. You could write a book on everything that happened over the last two days. It was a fantastic experience. Now we'll go back to concentrating on the Star Mazda championship and see if we can move up the Road to Indy ladder to Firestone Indy Lights next year."
Krohn was seventh overall in the warm-up Sunday morning.
-source: andersen racing