Rossi earns much-needed runner-up after ‘big fight’ in Portland

It wasn’t quite the win he’s been craving, but Alexander Rossi was mostly pleased with the end result of a second place on Sunday at the Portland Grand Prix.

Andretti Autosport’s 2016 Indy 500 winner has had the definition of a rollercoaster season so far: P9 at the first race, P21 at the second, P8 at the third, P20 at the fourth, P7 at the fifth, P29 at the sixth… It makes a relatively clean podium debut for the year in the final weeks of the season a welcome upturn in fortunes.

“It’s good to have some luck on our side,” Rossi said. “Ultimately, this is the best result for the NAPA Andretti Honda – it’s just a bummer to come up a bit short of a win.”

Rossi was one of a few drivers to be rewarded with a quality finish — ending up where he started after opting for a three-stop pit strategy — once a number of cautions shuffled the running order and the two-stoppers fell behind the faster drivers committed to three.

“It was a big fight, for sure,” he said. “That’s the beauty of IndyCar racing with the different strategies. I’m glad it ended up sorting itself out after the start, or we all would have looked pretty silly.”