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Monday, June 17, 2024

O’Ward feels “helpless” over concern he fears will handicap his Indy 500

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The 25-year-old Mexican was Arrow McLaren’s greatest shot to win final 12 months’s race till he crashed out within the closing phases as an bold transfer on eventual runner-up Marcus Ericsson ended within the Flip 3 wall.

Though he was fifth quickest in apply on Monday, as groups reverted to race-spec turbo enhance after three days in qualifying mode, the usually upbeat O’Ward was uncharacteristically gloomy about his possibilities in Sunday’s 108th operating of the ‘Best Spectacle in Racing’.

“It positively hasn’t been the most effective of the times of the month,” he mentioned after Monday’s operating. “We’ve had some annoying concern that we simply can not seem to excellent.

“I simply hope we will repair it. If not, we will be in handicap mode for the race. However by way of steadiness, I believe we’re fairly sporty if we repair that.”

Pato O’Ward, Arrow McLaren Chevrolet

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Photograph by: Phillip Abbott / Motorsport Images

When pressed on precisely what the problem was, O’Ward replied: “Too many variables.”

He went on so as to add: “We’re gradual. We all know what it’s, but it surely’s so much simpler mentioned than finished to repair it or not have the problem. It simply sucks whenever you’re not quick sufficient round right here. You are feeling helpless.

“I imply, all you are able to do is sort of simply ignore it and attempt to make all the opposite issues work and simply put a variety of emphasis on that to verify it does not occur on race day. Clearly, there’s nonetheless a chance that it might.”

O’Ward will begin the Indy 500 from eighth, which is the center of the third row and mirrors his beginning place from final 12 months. He completed runner-up to Ericsson in 2022 from seventh on the grid.

Monday’s apply noticed a variety of multi-car draft pack operating, and whereas some drivers – like Andretti World’s Colton Herta – had been capable of work their method by way of to the entrance, others had been unable to make ahead progress.

“I believe it is simply a part of what you must sort of battle with round this place,” O’Ward mentioned of discovering the best setup for the race. “There is a fantastic line with all the pieces.

“If you would like extra pace, you are going to quit in different efficiency areas the place you sort of want all of them within the race. It is simply a part of it.

“I imply, I am assured my guys are going to repair it and really sort of dig into simply see how can we not have that concern and-or simply eliminate it utterly.”

Patricio O'Ward, Arrow McLaren Chevrolet

Patricio O’Ward, Arrow McLaren Chevrolet

Photograph by: Phillip Abbott / Motorsport Images

Staff principal Gard Ward stays Positive about McLaren’s possibilities this weekend, with only one extra apply throughout Friday’s Carb Day to make its last race-trim choices.

“It’s all the time wonderful how you are feeling such as you’ve received on a regular basis on the planet whenever you get right here, after which whenever you get by way of qualifying, you do not have a lot time left,” he mentioned. “It was a busy session attempting to get the Arrow McLaren Chevrolet vehicles nearly as good as will be for the race.

“We really feel fairly good about the place we’re at and we now have some completely happy drivers. We’re chipping away at issues little by little. There’s another session to go after which it is time for the actual factor.”



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