Salinas, Calif. (Sunday, September 10, 2023)- Irishman James Roe’s first full season in the INDY NXT™ by Firestone championship concluded this weekend with a doubleheader at historic WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca. His consistency and craft at the helm of the No. 29 Topcon Andretti Autosport machine earned his team 335 points and a seventh-place finish in the final championship standings. .
In Race 1 of the weekend, Roe used his skill and experience to run as high as seventh – rising eight places from a 15th position start. . Roe ultimately finished the day ninth, notching his tenth top-ten finish across 14 races this season.
“We didn’t qualify well today, but we were able to work our way forward to P7. At the end, we had a run on Franzoni into Turn 6 but got into aero-wash behind him and went straight off on the exit of Turn 6 falling back to ninth. It was disappointing on my end. I made a mistake there but other than that I think we did what we could going from 15th to seventh. We had a quick car and were picking them off driving to pace.”
After starting ninth in Race 2, the 24-year-old had gained two positions and was running a strong seventh when a spin sent him off track and to the rear of the field leading to a 15th place result.
“It was a frustrating race,” Roe said. “We got bumped into at the start and fell back, then worked our way back up. At the halfway point, around Turn 10, I understeered off and then came back on. That was on me. We just hung in there. I’m happy to finish P7 in points, it’s a pretty solid result with a few things that happened throughout the year. We’re straight to work on plans for next year.”
The Irish driver recorded a successful first full season of INDY NXT – highlighted by a podium finish at the iconic Indianapolis Motor Speed – with the support of dedicated partners Topcon, CES Power, Strong Roots, Ring Power Corporation, The Ireland Funds, and GAAPP.
Having just closed out his 2023 campaign, Roe is already planning toward 2024 – with announcements on his trajectory coming soon.