06/10/2021 at 10:19 AM CEST
Àlex Palou was two laps away from winning the Indianapolis 500, and becoming the first Spanish driver to do so. The sadness for this, despite finishing second and leading the championship, lasted “five or ten minutes & rdquor; and now he’s focused on trying to win the championship.
“It is not the same to win a race that is 200 laps to win an entire championship. I want to die to win the Indianapolis 500, but I have more to win the championship & rdquor ;, assures the Barcelona driver.
A race in which he was always ahead and led in the final laps until 198 of 200, when the Brazilian Helio castroneves He overtook him and took advantage of the bends to give him a slipstream and thus defend the position.
“He had very good ‘timing’. The traffickers were very slow. When I was going first, the slipstream helped him a lot and then the folded ones helped him. Maybe if it took one more curve to try to pass me, I wouldn’t have been able to & rdquor ;, remember.
“I felt like I had a great opportunity because we had a great pace, we made very good stops, a great strategy & mldr; And you never know when it will come again At the end he was not angry, he was a little sad & rdquor;, he says.
“It lasted five or ten minutes, no more. It’s more than anything, not because you don’t give importance to being second, but because you never know when you’re going to get another chance like that. It was going very well. Look Ryan Hunter-Reay, he said he had a rhythm but he had a bad stop and goodbye. Nobody remembers anymore. Everyone will remember Helio. But after ten minutes I thought I was in the Indy 500 for the second year in a row, with an audience, a great team & mldr; That day, I did not care about being the leader of the & rdquor; championship.
An Àlex Palou, promoted by Monaco Increase Management, that ponders the growth that his great performance in the Indianapolis 500 has given him in Spain: “We could have done even more. We have done well, it is very good to do second, but we have to be the first Spaniard to win the 500 Miles. Everyone is very happy and in Spain more people begin to follow us, which is very good & rdquor ;.
Two weeks later he faces a double Grand Prix, with a race on Saturday and Sunday, at a new circuit for him, in Detroit, in which will defend his championship lead with 248 points to the 212 of his teammate Scott Dixon. And it will do so with a six-position penalty for changing the engine during Indianapolis.
“In this championship, focusing on scoring points is the way to win. It is so competitive that you are going to have bad days and if you make them regular you will have ten more points and that makes the difference. Scott gets into that mode and that’s why he’s won six World Cups. First race, six penalty places and having the race on Sunday I will put myself in that mode and try to score as many points as I can. Of course, if I can win I will risk 200% & rdquor ;, he assures.