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Monday, December 4, 2023

Profitable IndyCar’s rookie of the yr title a “nice bonus”

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The 23-year-old Formulation 2 graduate ran 12 of 17 races, which excluded ovals, in a trip share settlement with Takuma Sato.

Nevertheless 5 tops 10s, together with a better of sixth on the streets of Toronto, established Armstrong as a rookie of the yr contender regardless of the schedule limitations.

It was cemented after a stout restoration to complete eighth in Sunday’s season finale at Laguna Seca, bettering rookie classmate and Juncos Hollinger Racing driver Agustin Canapino by 34 factors (214-180).

“I am completely happy about it,” stated Armstrong, the second New Zealander in three years to win the rookie prize after Scott McLaughlin in 2021.

“The staff gave me the very best alternative to do it and I simply drove as quick as I might. And that was the outcome, in the end.

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“At first of the yr, my goal was to be on the rostrum and win races, it wasn’t essentially the rookie championship, however that is only a nice bonus.”

Extra can be anticipated subsequent season after last week’s announcement that Armstrong will contest the ovals as a part of a full season with CGR.

He’ll be part of new signing Linus Lundqvist, defending champion Alex Palou and six-time title-winner Scott Dixon in a four-car CGR lineup, with Marcus Ericsson departing to join the newly renamed Andretti Global operation.

Marcus Ericsson, Chip Ganassi Racing Honda, Scott Dixon, Chip Ganassi Racing Honda, Chip Ganassi, Alex Palou, Chip Ganassi Racing Honda, Marcus Armstrong, Chip Ganassi Racing Honda

Photograph by: Richard Dole / Motorsport Images

“It was good to lastly discuss what I’ve in retailer for the long run with Chip Ganassi Racing,” Armstrong stated.

“As nicely, to win the rookie of the yr championship, I am extraordinarily happy to lastly lock that down.

“Clearly, we did not do 5 races, so it was going to be a troublesome ask, for certain. Nonetheless I feel we completed each race, we have been constant, we had some good outcomes.

“Generally I feel we might have finished quite a bit higher. Yeah, we have been constant and quick sufficient to win it with out the ovals.”

He added that up to now “IndyCar has actually lived up with its expectations” and says “it is the place I need to keep for the following couple of years, for certain”.

Armstrong is ready for his first oval check on Wednesday on the high-banked 1.5-mile Texas Motor Speedway.

Having ready with simulator operating and asking veteran Dixon for suggestions, he stated he would “be going there with my eyes broad open and simply seeing what I discover, making the very best of it”.

“I really feel like it may be a brand-new expertise for me,” he stated. So, it is thrilling. “It is the beginning of a brand new journey, I assume.”

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