Tatiana Calderón completed her second outing in the NTT IndyCar Series last weekend with the AJ Foyt Racing team around the demanding streets of Long Beach.
The Colombian driver guided her No. 11 ROKiT Dallara-Chevrolet to a solid 16th place finish in only her second IndyCar start, avoiding trouble where many of her more experienced rivals were involved in accidents around the unforgiving California street course.
That meant Tatiana was classified second of the six rookies in the field, finishing only behind her AJ Foyt Racing teammate and fellow ROKiT-backed driver Kyle Kirkwood.
Tatiana had just two practice sessions to get acquainted with the fearsome Long Beach track before qualifying, but she continually slashed the deficit to the pacesetters and once again outpaced seven-time NASCAR Cup champion Jimmie Johnson to line up 26th on the grid.
Avoiding making mistakes and continuing to clock valuable race mileage, she made steady progress up the field over the course of the 85-lap race as many of her competitors ended their races in the wall.
In the end, a 16th-place finish ahead of many of IndyCar’s more illustrious names was a deserved reward, giving Tatiana even more confidence as she prepares for greater things in the remainder of her 12-race programme in America’s top single-seater series.
Tatiana Calderón: “I'm really happy with the steps we have made since St. Petersburg. I feel much more confident in the car, even on pit stops and making little adjustments and learning how to deal with the tires better. I'm really thankful for the team. They did a fantastic job. Of course, we want to be fighting more people in the next couple of races. The steps we took were huge and I'll carry that confidence into Barber."
Tatiana’s IndyCar adventure continues with her first visit to a proper road course at Barber Motorsports Park in Alabama for the fourth round of the season on May 1.