Indy Lights - Krohn Runs Strong at Long Beach And Ends Up in Eighth Place
LONG BEACH, April 19, 2011: For the second time in a week Anders "The Viking" Krohn was extremely strong in the first half of a Firestone Indy Lights race until a problem occurred, forcing the popular driver from Stavanger, Norway to salvage a top-10 finish instead of recording the top-five or podium that appeared to be so close.
On Sunday the setting was the 1.968-mile, 12-turn street circuit in Long Beach, Calif.
Krohn ran comfortably in fifth and then fourth place for the first 28 laps of what turned out to be a 43-lap race. He was in fourth place, just saving his Firestone Firehawk tires and trying to keep Stefan Wilson behind him when he developed an issue with the brakes of his Belardi Auto Racing No. 9 in Turn 8 with 28 laps down, and entered a run-off area. All of the decals of his sponsors - Liberty Engineering, Logi Trans Offshore Express, Trallfa, PM International Suppliers, Allied Building Products, ZAT Graphics, Eagles Canyon Raceway, OMP and Bell Helmets - were unscathed, as he never hit anything.
He quickly turned around and re-entered the fray in eighth place. Two laps later the same problem occurred again in the same turn. Krohn was forced to take the same escape route, which allowed Victor Carbone and Mikael Grenier to get by and relegated him to tenth place.
He moved up to ninth when the sixth-place driver, Victor Garcia, spun in Turn 7 with 36 laps down.
The leader, Josef Newgarden, gave the victory to Conor Daly and eighth place to Krohn when he went into a tire wall off Turn 8 with 40 laps down. The race was scheduled for 45 laps but ended under that yellow with 43 laps complete due to television time commitments.
Krohn, who lives in Houston, qualified fifth with a time of 1:14.2365 (95.436 miles per hour). He set his fastest lap of the race on lap 28 with a time of 1:14.546 when he was defending fourth from Wilson.
The race was covered live on VERSUS. The top five were Daly, polesitter Esteban Guerrieri, Wilson, Gustavo Yacaman and James Winslow. Newgarden led 31 laps; Peter Dempsey led eight laps; Daly led three laps and Guerrieri led one lap. There were four full-course cautions for eight laps.
The next race, the prestigious Firestone Freedom 100 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway on Friday, May 27, will also be covered live on VERSUS. It's the first oval on the schedule and it's a race that Krohn really wants to win.
Unofficially Krohn is eighth in the point standings with a fifth, a ninth and an eighth in the first three races on the 13-race schedule.
Krohn's Web site is at anderskrohn.com. His team's is at BelardiAutoRacing.com. The series' Web site, which features live timing and scoring, is at indycar.com/fil.
Krohn's post-race quote follows:
"We had some brake issues. I was running a solid fourth when it occurred. I needed to get on the brakes hard and the left-rear tire locked up in Turn 8. It wouldn't turn; it just went straight. The same thing happened a couple of laps later and then two more cars passed me.
"If we hadn't had the problem that fourth would have been a third when Newgarden had his problems, but I just had to back off after that. I didn't hit the brakes hard anytime after that, because I knew if I did it would happen again.
"The battle with Wilson really wasn't too bad. He never got in a position to really pass me because I had good exits off the corners. It wasn't that stressful, really. We just had the brake issue, and that's that.
"It's tough. The Belardi Auto Racing guys have done such an outstanding job, and once again we were in a position to challenge for a podium. We're getting closer week after week.
"Now we'll refocus and concentrate on the three oval-track races coming up. Once again our goal will be to progress quickly and have it come together so we get some podiums and some wins.
"We're getting there. I have to give a massive thanks to the whole team. It's great to see people so enthusiastic about our program. We'll just keep on pushing and hopefully we'll get a podium and a win soon.
"I've always been comfortable on ovals and I'm massively excited about the three ovals coming up, especially Indy. We're going to fly to Vegas tonight and do a series test at Las Vegas on Wednesday to prepare for it."