“Salty” may not be the correct word to use when describing Marcus Ericsson‘s feelings after Sunday’s Indianapolis 500.
After racing 500 miles and coming within 0.0974 seconds of becoming the first repeat winner at Indianapolis since Helio Castroneves, who did it in 2001 and 2002. To say Ericsson was in a great mood coming into the post-race press conference would be just plain wrong.
The highs and lows of "The Greatest Spectacle in Racing".
Hear from some of the drivers following the checkered flag of the 107th Running of the Indianapolis 500.
— NTT INDYCAR SERIES (@IndyCar) May 29, 2023
In Ericsson’s opening remarks during the presser, he congratulated race winner Josef Newgarden along with Team Penske on their win. He also touched on how he knows the feelings that Josef is feeling at this moment in time.
“I’m very happy with my performance, with our performance. I think we did an awesome race…” Ericsson said. “I had a great car, great strategy, pit stops. Tough restarts and good restarts. Had a lot of fun out there. I think it was a tough way to end the race. I don’t really agree with how we did that. I don’t think that was a fair way to end the race. But I’m proud of our effort”.
Then, Ericsson was asked to clarify what he didn’t like about the final few laps of the race and he didn’t hold back.
“I think it wasn’t enough laps to go to do what we did. I don’t think it’s safe to go out of the pits on cold tires for a restart when half the field is sort of still trying to get out on track when we go green…” the 2022 Indy 500 champion stated. “I don’t think it’s a fair way to end the race. I don’t think it’s a right way to end the race. So I can’t agree with that”.
When asked if he was going to talk to IndyCar about the finish, Ericsson replied, “No, it is what it is. I just have to deal with it. I think I did everything I could. I did an awesome last restart. I caught Josef by surprise and the lead into 1, but it wasn’t enough, so for sure it’s hard to swallow”.
By finishing second, Marcus Ericsson missed out on a potential bonus of $420,000, which has accumulated each year since 2003. The bonus will be awarded to the next driver who wins back-to-back Indianapolis 500s.