Lundgaard ‘happy to be disappointed’ with third in Indy GP

Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing’s Danish ace Christian Lundgaard says his third career podium finish and second on the Indy road course was “the minimum” that he and the team were seeking from the 2024 Sonsio Grand Prix.

Lundgaard took the lead from polesitter Alex Palou at the start of the race, went on to lead 35 laps, and finished third behind Palou and Will Power but ahead of Scott Dixon. He described his post-race mood as, “Happy to be disappointed, I would say. Yeah, I think that’s becoming an expression in the RLL engineering truck. Sometimes we’re just happy to be disappointed.

“I’m proud of the team. We qualified well at Barber, and I think considering how we handled Long Beach in terms of strategy — trying to get too much out of what I think we could have hurt us on the pure result. Going into Barber, it was a pure strategy of just get through the race and make sure that we get a good result, and coming here, there was a minimum, which was a podium. We got it, but I wanted it to be a win.”


The Dane said he was wondering about his choice of a second set of primary Firestones on a day in which the alternate compound was faster and surprisingly durable. But he explained that the only set of alternates he had available before taking fresh ones for the final stint were well worn, and he doubted they would last.

“I think today on our performance we really did the best job that I think we could on the first two stints,” he said. “We were a little bold trying to put on another sticker set of primaries for the third stint, but the alternative was a very used alternate tire that we had to [run] a long way, and I preferred the primary tires there.

“The red tires were the preferred tires today, but going into the race, I think everybody was in the unknown. Everybody had a question mark — is it going to be 50/50 or 70/30 in terms of one compound being preferred? …I chose the sticker primaries because we were one of the most competitive cars in qualifying on blacks, on the primary tires. I didn’t see a reason why not to use them.

“But I think Alex was just fast today. He was fast here last year in May, in August. He’s fast wherever we go, really.”

Story originally appeared on Racer