Pourchaire Gets First Oval Opportunity with Test

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Theo Pourchaire

Theo Pourchaire, the Formula 2 champion who has made two NTT INDYCAR SERIES starts with Arrow McLaren, got his first shot at an oval track Monday at World Wide Technology Raceway during a single-car test.

Pourchaire successfully completed the test and could compete in oval races after the 108th Running of the Indianapolis 500 presented by Gainbridge. The NTT INDYCAR SERIES will race at Iowa Speedway, World Wide Technology Raceway and The Milwaukee Mile.

Around stoppages for rain, the Frenchman turned 110 laps at the 1.25-mile track outside St. Louis. Lap times were not released.

“Really happy that I was able to get back behind the wheel of the Arrow McLaren IndyCar, and to have this opportunity again was great,” he said. “And the first time for me on an oval, which was really exciting, I couldn’t wait to feel like to feel the driving on an oval.

“I can say it now it’s really quick, really impressive. You have to be really smooth on the steering wheel, steering inputs, going back on power and you have to be really smooth in the car.”

Pourchaire, who had former “500” winners Tony Kanaan and Alexander Rossi at the session, said he respected the oval.

“I’m really happy (but) really tired mentally as well, because it’s going super quick,” he said. “And you don’t want to do a mistake on a track like this. If you do a small mistake you can end up in the wall. And we all know that ending up in the wall in an oval is really dangerous. But I enjoyed it. It’s been a pretty good day. The pace was good.”

A mid-June test at The Milwaukee Mile could be the next opportunity for Pourchaire to again drive on an oval.

Last month, Pourchaire finished 11th in his maiden series race, the Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach, and 22nd in the Children's of Alabama Indy Grand Prix powered by AmFirst. He drove the No. 6 Arrow McLaren Chevrolet in both races.

“I would like to thank everybody in the team for giving me this opportunity once again,” he said. “And would like to thanks as well, Tony and Alexander for helping me today getting used to the INDYCAR on an oval track. So yeah, it was a good day.”