Subscribe

Sign up for free

  • Get quick access to your favorite articles

  • Manage alerts on breaking news and favorite drivers

  • Make your voice heard with article commenting.

Motorsport prime

Discover premium content
Subscribe

Edition

Global Global
NASCAR Cup Indianapolis

Kostecki "pretty disappointed in myself" after qualifying crash

Brodie Kostecki’s debut in the NASCAR Cup Series was already going to be difficult but it got a little harder once he hit the track on Saturday.

-Brodie

Kostecki, who currently leads the Supercars standings with his Erebus Motorsport team, was entering this weekend's Indy Road Course event with Richard Childress Racing’s No. 33 Chevrolet team with no track time and little preparation.

Saturday’s practice and qualifying sessions showed Kostecki clearly has the pace to contend, but his path to a win or strong finish became much tougher following an incident in qualifying.

Kostecki was sixth-fastest in Group B in Round 1 of qualifying and trying to crack the top five on his final attempt when he got loose off Turn 11 and hit the wall, which did significant damage to his car.

Qualifying drama

He ended up 11th-fastest overall, and while he will officially retain his starting position, Kostecki will have to start Sunday’s racer from the rear of the field because of the substantial work his team did on his car.

“I’m pretty disappointed in myself to be honest,” Kostecki said. “I was just finishing my lap a little too hot coming off the banking and now we have damage. The car has speed, no doubt.

“We should be OK for the race.”

Unlike his fellow Supercars star Shane van Gisbergen who got a test on the Charlotte Roval before his Cup debut last month, Kostecki did not have the benefit of any on-track experience in the Next Gen car prior to arriving in Indianapolis.

Kostecki, 25, did get time in the simulator at the GM Tech Center in North Carolina this past week and focused on braking points, pit road entrance and finding the best line to drive the 14-turn, 2.439-mile course.

“My biggest challenge is going to be time. Obviously, it’s a very short practice and my first time in the car,” Kostecki said. “Getting up to speed is important to make laps and give my RCR team feedback as soon as possible.”

Brodie Kostecki, Richard Childress Racing, MobileX Chevrolet Camaro

Brodie Kostecki, Richard Childress Racing, MobileX Chevrolet Camaro

Photo by: Rusty Jarrett / NKP / Motorsport Images

Unfortunately, that proved a problem as well.

Minutes after taking the track Saturday for his 20-minute practice session, Kostecki’s No. 33 Chevrolet stalled and came to a stop on one of the access roads. He was able to get the car restarted and go back to pit road where his team detected an issue with the throttle pedal.

He lost precious time on the track but was able to return and completed a few laps. He ended up 38th-fastest.

Kostecki quickly picked up the pace in the first round of qualifying only to hit the wall while trying to put down a lap good enough to advance to the final round and challenge for the pole.

Despite the setback, Sunday’s road course event offers the chance for teams to explore different pit strategies and the wild nature of NASCAR’s recent Indy Road Course events shows any outcome is still possible.

“I think a finish inside the top 10 would be a good goal for my first NASCAR Cup Series race. Richard Childress Racing has put a lot of effort into their road course program and won (here) last year,” Kostecki said.

“It will be up to me how fast I get up to speed and learn the car.”

Returning to the stock car world

Unlike van Gisbergen, Kostecki does have prior experience in NASCAR, which gives him a much different appreciation of reaching the sport’s highest level.

Kostecki spent part of his childhood in the United States and two seasons in the K&N Pro (now ARCA East) Series in 2013 and 2014.

In 16 career starts, he won two poles and had one top-five and four top-10 finishes. His career best finish of fifth came at Dover (Del.) Motor Speedway in 2014.

“To get my Cup debut, I guess my career has sort of done full circle, which is pretty cool,” Kostecki said. “This is an absolute dream come true for me.”

Read Also:

Be part of Motorsport community

Join the conversation
Previous article Kobayashi feels "100% ready" for NASCAR Cup debut
Next article Dixon wanted SVG to try IndyCar

Top Comments

Sign up for free

  • Get quick access to your favorite articles

  • Manage alerts on breaking news and favorite drivers

  • Make your voice heard with article commenting.

Motorsport prime

Discover premium content
Subscribe

Edition

Global Global