McLaughlin wary of Indy 500 burnout
Friday 12th May, 2023 - 10:03am
Scott McLaughlin has highlighted mental burnout as a risk for IndyCar drivers during this, the Month of May.
The season is building towards its biggest race, the Indianapolis 500, with drivers this weekend tackling the IndyCar Grand Prix on The Brickyard’s infield road course.
However, they cannot afford to get carried away with the excitement and pressure of the category’s showpiece event.
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“It’s a very exciting month for us all,” said McLaughlin.
“We’ve talked about it. It’s our Super Bowl. It’s really a lot of things rolled into one for our series, very important month for us all.
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“For the business of IndyCar, for us as drivers, it’s the biggest race of your life, but you have to control those emotions as well.
“I think you can burn yourself out by thinking about it too much, making it too big of a deal as well.
“I just try and keep it as calm as I can and it’s just another race with a lot of cool things around, especially if you win.
“It’s hard to control that when there’s so many fans that come out and whatnot. It’s very cool [but] it’s just something you got to control.”
The New Zealander has arrived in Indianapolis after driving his #3 Team Penske Chevrolet into victory lane just under a fortnight ago at Barber Motorsports Park.
The most recent winner of the Indy 500 is Chip Ganassi Racing’s Marcus Ericsson, who remarked, “[It is] super special to be here as the defending winner.
“I can’t wait for the whole month, but I think especially that feeling on race day morning when you wake up and you know it’s the 500 race there. It’s just so special.
“Yeah, excited about that, excited to see all the fans here; it’s always so cool to just interact with all the people here.
“I don’t know, driver intros for me for the 500, there’s something about it. For me that moment when you go out there in the driver intros, you look around, you see people, whatever direction you look at. Moments like that is what I think I’m looking forward to.”
Romain Grosjean is yet to win the Indy 500, or indeed any other IndyCar race, although he has come very close to doing so on multiple occasions this year.
The Andretti Autosport driver commented, “We’ve got two races this month. As Scott says, they all score the same points.
“Obviously, one is a big one, but I think the win is the consequence of what you do.
“It’s all about building and working and doing the best you can.”
Practice at Indianapolis starts late tonight (AEST), with Stan Sport bringing live and ad-free coverage of Practice 2 tomorrow at 03:30 AEST and Qualifying later in the morning, from 06:00 AEST.
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