King's first road course race of season is a bit of a damp squib
It was a dramatic third round of the Verizon IndyCar Series for Jordan King as rain plagued the weekend's race and the Honda Grand Prix of Alabama had to be contested over two days.
Following disappointing results at St Petersburg and Long Beach, despite promising performances, King was eager to convert his strong displays into points as the series headed to Birmingham, Alabama, for the first road course race of the season at Barber Motorsport Park.
The anticipated rain arrived prior to the pre-race ceremonies on Sunday and the race was declared a wet start, requiring all competitors to start on wet condition Firestone Firehawk tyres.
The conditions worsened and with driver visibility compromised the race was suspended until the following day with only 23 laps completed.
However, in that time King had moved up eight places for his starting position of 19th.
The race resumed just after noon on Monday with approximately 75 minutes remaining.
A blistering start allowed the Harbury driver to pass two cars before Turn 2. However, an electrical problem which caused him to lose all the information on the dash of his steering wheel meant he fell down to 12th as he nursed the issue.
With the field on split strategies, King moved all the way up to sixth position prior to pitting on Lap 67, with a first top-ten finish of the campaign looking on the cards.
Unfortunately, heavy rain came to the 2.3-mile permanent road course for the second day in a row and hoping for a late race caution that would have the event end under yellow, King stayed on slicks as long as possible.
He eventually had to pit for wet weather tyres on the 75th of the 82 laps completed in the two-hour time limit and the forced stop meant he slipped out of the top-ten and eventually finished in 14th.
“Unfortunately, the rain yesterday may have caused an electrical problem that took quite a while to clear,” said King after the race. “Once we got going, it was then alright. Our strategy was then compromised with the rain and we were caught out. Overall slightly annoying, we really would have been fine for a top-five finish quite comfortably I think.”
King will be back on track for the INDYCAR Grand Prix at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course on May 12.