His sole victory of the yr got here within the second Indianapolis highway course race, after passing polesitter Pato O’Ward for the lead and warding off Romain Grosjean to assert the win.
Energy beforehand needed to endure watching a near-certain victory on the first race of the Detroit double-header slip from his grasp, as his automobile failed to begin up following the late-race purple flag interval whereas he was within the lead.
The Australian says that qualifying proved to be the important thing weak spot, having initially elected to give attention to race tempo with a purpose to try to construct a constant foundation for a title problem.
“I undoubtedly wanted to enhance qualifying,” Energy instructed Autosport.
“We form of obtained again on high of that towards the tip of the yr.
“As much as that time, I’d say we had put a bit much less emphasis on qualifying as a result of we might see that the true key to a championship, as tight as IndyCar is now, is to get a bunch of high threes and high fives on race days and clearly go for the win each time attainable.
“However the factor is, you possibly can’t actually quit something in qualifying since you’ll drop too far down, particularly as a result of it was a yr the place we have been struggling to discover a good place for the automobile.”
Energy and race engineer Dave Faustino, who since 2007 have been companions yearly bar one, labored exhausting to treatment the state of affairs in that month-long mid-season hole final yr and once more on this low season.
Following that, Energy believes they’ve turned up some good insights which is able to result in tangible enhancements this yr.
“We’ve loads of info to have a look at, and while you do that you just discover loads of issues to enhance upon – stuff you’re on the lookout for and generally further stuff too,” Energy defined.
“We’ve obtained loads of good information, not solely from what we discovered but additionally as a result of Josef was so quick within the center a part of the yr whereas doing one thing totally different with the automobile.
“I imply, watching how he was producing velocity, Dave and I obtained suckered into making an attempt issues that didn’t significantly go well with us.
Picture by: Phillip Abbott / Motorsport Images
“You do be taught a lot extra when issues are going in opposition to you, you dive deeper and deeper into the info, uncover the problems, give you just a few other ways you would possibly clear up the issue, after which analyse which will likely be greatest to get essentially the most velocity from the automobile. And that features my driving, too.”
Energy added that he was “optimistic” about 2022 and the next 2023 season, wherein the present 2.2-litre twin-turbo powertrains will depart for a 2.Four-litre hybrid unit, feeling that the skilled drivers could have the nous to know their calls for.
“I’m optimistic about this season as a result of each time we’ve had points the yr earlier than at a specific form of observe, Dave and I’ve been good at homing in on it, figuring it out and coming again more durable the yr after.
“I’ve loads of confidence in my crew – they’re fast, actually strong and dependable. Greatest I’ve had.
“After which I reckon 2023 is wanting good too, as a result of it’s going to be an enormous change with the brand new engine and hybrid models.
“I believe that’s after we’ve historically appeared robust – adapting to new regs or a big alteration to the automobiles.
“And anyway, I believe it’s going to go well with all of the skilled drivers as a result of we’ve been by way of large automobile modifications earlier than; we kind of know what we’re making an attempt to attain with a automobile, what we’re on the lookout for.”