Sebastien Bourdais piloted the No. 11 PLANTRONICS – KVSH Racing Chevrolet/Dallara/Firestone entry to a 10th place finish in the 2016 Verizon IndyCar Series season ending GoPro Grand Prix of Sonoma on the 2.385-mile, 12-turn Sonoma Raceway permanent road course in Sonoma, CA.
Bourdais qualified ninth and started on the inside of row five. He dropped to 10th on the opening lap and remained in the top-10 the entire race except during pit stops. Bourdais got as high as seventh and sat in ninth place as late as lap 76 of the 85-lap contest. He was in fuel saving mode for most of the last two stints of the race and had to give up a position in the final nine laps in order to finish the race.
Sebastien Bourdais Race Day Quote:
“It was a tough day for the Plantronics – KVSH Racing Team. Not the way we wanted to finish the season. It’s a top-10, but boy that was hard work. A lot of fuel saving, just a boring race. It’s too bad it finishes like that, but definitely we didn’t have the tools to fight this weekend. We tried our best and seemed to be able to make an illusion on one lap during qualifying on the red (alternate tire), but everything else seemed to be pretty average. We tried to stay clean and make it to the end. We had quite a few issues during the race with fuel consumption, burning more fuel than we thought we were and things like that, which really threw us a bit behind the eight ball. After that I really didn’t trust the numbers, so I was saving more fuel and we still almost came up short. I am glad I did, but definitely not the kind of race where you feel like you are a factor or try to fight for it. You’re just very passive, which is never a great feeling. We’ll move on.”
Bourdais finished 14th in the championship standings with 404 points. He finished 10th in both 2014 and 2015.
He finished in the top-10 in 11 of the 16 races this season with three top-five showings (Detroit Race 1, Pocono and Watkins Glen) and one win (Detroit Race 1).
Today’s 10th place finishes ties Bourdais best showing In six races at Sonoma Raceway, He finish of sixth in 2011 and 10th in 2013.
Bourdais qualified in the top-10 in six of the 16 races during the 2016 Verizon IndyCar Series season (all on road or street circuits) with a best starting position of third at Watkins Glen (fifth at Barber Mortorsports Park and Toronto; eighth at St. Petersburg and the Indy GP).
This is Bourdais’ 11th Verizon IndyCar Series season and third with KVSH Racing
The 2016 GoPro Grand Prix of Sonoma will be Bourdais’ 163rd career Verizon IndyCar Series start, 50th with KVSH Racing and sixth at Sonoma Raceway
In 163 career IndyCar starts, Bourdais has won 35 races (tied with Bobby Unser for sixth all-time) and taken 33 pole positions (tied for seventh).
Bourdais is the only driver to win four consecutive IndyCar championships, taking the title in 2004 – 2007 (Champ Car World Series)
Bourdais won from the pole at the 2016 Le Mans 24 Hours in the GTE Pro category. He has another pole and three runner-up finishes (2007, 2009, and 2011) in 10 previous starts at Le Mans. Bourdais has also won the 12 Hours of Sebring and Petit Le Mans in 2015 and the Rolex 24 at Daytona in 2014 (was runner-up in 2015),
Bourdais, 37, is a native of Le Mans, France but resides in St. Petersburg, Florida.