LEEDS, Ala – Normally, heading into the biggest events of a season, teams like to enter the situation on a hot streak. For Andretti Autosport, unfortunately, they couldn’t enter the Month of May any colder.
Andretti was supposed to be one of the top Honda teams this season, if not the best Honda team, but unfortunately, they have just one driver in the top 10 of the Verizon IndyCar Series points standings entering the two races at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in May.
After the first four races of 2016, Ryan Hunter-Reay currently sits 10th in the season standings, as he’s the best driver in the organization right now.
The next best driver is Carlos Munoz as he’s 15th in the standings heading into Indy while Marco Andretti and rookie Max Chilton are 17th and 18th respectively.
That’s not where we’d expect to see one of IndyCar’s best teams.
Even worse, the team has just two combined top 10 finishes this season and has led a combined three laps, as that came in the season opener at St. Pete with Hunter-Reay.
Other than that, it’s been mediocrity at best as the four drivers are not just struggling to qualifying in the top 10, but they’re failing to finish there as well.
The last two races, Andretti has had zero top 10 finishes from the combined group as Hunter-Reay has finishes of 18th and 11th, Munoz 12th and 14th, Andretti 19th and 12th with Rossi having finishes of 20th and 15th.
This is all with only 21 drivers in the field, so you can really say the only team statistically performing any worse is Dale Coyne Racing.
So, heading into the most important month of the entire season where there’s not just the Angie’s List Grand Prix of Indianapolis, but an Indy 500 that not just pays points for qualifying, but double points for the race as well.
If these four struggle with qualifying and race pace where they don’t start or finish in the top 10, then they’re going to likely be too far out to even worry about having any one finish in the top 10 in the points standings this year.
It’s not like this team lacks talent as all four have the capability to reach victory lane multiple times in a season. It seems like they’re getting beat in the engineering and development department as none of the four cars have the grip levels they need to compete at as the speed is down as well.
That’s a shame for one of IndyCar’s “Big Three” teams.
It’s a far cry from them having four cars finish in the top six of the Indy 500 just two years ago.