Handling Problems Force Krohn Out at Iowa Speedway

NEWTON, Iowa, June 26 — Handling problems forced Anders Krohn to complete only 50 laps of the 115-lap Sukup 100 Firestone Indy Lights race Saturday at Iowa Speedway,

The Houston-based driver ended up 11th in Belardi Auto Racing’s Liberty Engineering Racing Special No. 9.  The car is sponsored by Liberty Engineering, Logi Trans Offshore Express, Trallfa, PM International Suppliers, Allied Building Products, ZAT Graphics, Eagles Canyon Raceway, OMP and Bell Helmets.

There wasn’t much time for tweaking the car at this event, which came right on the heels of the June 19 race in Milwaukee. The schedule was jam-packed with five different series, and rain also complicated things.

Krohn, a native of Stavanger, Norway, was seventh in the first practice session Friday when he ran a 20.2034 (159.300 miles per hour) on his 62nd and last lap around the 0.875-mile tri-oval. He ended up ninth in Sunoco Pole Time Trials three and a half hours later. His first lap was a 20.5263 and his second lap was a 20.4721 for a combined time of 40.9984 and an average speed of 157.001 mph. He was 11th in the final practice session Friday night with a 20.3473 (158.173 mph), recorded on his 17th of 55 laps.

The race started slowly due to two false starts and an early caution for contact in Turn 3 between the polesitter, Esteban Guerrieri, and Gustavo Yacaman. Both continued.

Krohn moved up from ninth to eighth on lap seven when Stefan Wilson fell back. He remained in eighth place, running between Duarte Ferreira and his Belardi teammate, Jorge Goncalvez, for eight laps.

He set his fastest lap of the race on lap 14 with a time of 20.773 seconds (154.931 mph), but none of the adjustments he made in the cockpit made his car perform better. Goncalvez got around him on lap 15 to push him back to ninth, and he dropped to 11th on lap 18 when Victor Garcia and Wilson both passed him.

He moved back up into the top 10 on lap 32 when Guerrieri dropped out with mechanical difficulties, but he was lapped by the leaders on lap 34. He continued to struggle until the team called him into the pits with 50 laps complete and he called it a day.

Josef Newgarden won the race, which was televised live on VERSUS, over Yacaman and Bryan Clauson.

“Things didn’t go the way we wanted them to here, but we’ll work hard and try to identify and solve the problem,” Krohn said afterwards.  “We were able to put a lap together here and there, but over a long run we were lacking both in pace and consistency.

“The Belardi Auto Racing guys have been working flat-out, and I’m so proud of them because they don’t give up,” he added. “I think I made 20 pit stops in one of the practice sessions as we just kept trying different things to make the car handle better.

“I know we’re all disappointed with our results in the last three races, but we think we know what the problem we’re facing now is, and we’re working hard to solve it,” he said. “The Belardi guys work incredibly hard, and I have total faith in them. I know their hard work will pay off. We’ll all do our best to bounce back at the next race, and we hope to have a super second-half of the season.”

Krohn is eighth in the current point standings with six races completed and eight remaining.

The series now heads north of the border for four races: July 10 on the street course in Toronto, Ontario; a doubleheader July 23-24 at the airport circuit at Edmonton, Alberta, and Aug. 7 on the street circuit at Trois-Rivieres, Quebec. The compete schedule and more series news can be found on indycar.com/fil. All of the Canadian races will be shown on VERSUS.

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