In the three weeks Bertrand Baguette has been in the United States, he’s experienced Southern hospitality in Alabama, hung out in sunny St. Petersburg and had his first McDonald’s breakfast. The latter won’t be the most memorable.

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Bertrand Baguette, thinking about McDonalds?

“Really, it wasn’t so bad,” says Baguette, who competed in his first IZOD IndyCar Series race April 11 with Conquest Racing at Barber Motorsports Park.” I’m not used to seeing so many McDonald’s here. Every five minutes your drive down the road there’s another McDonald’s. In Belgium, I have to go 30 minutes to find a McDonald’s so it was a good experience and will do it in the future for sure.”

OK, Bertrand, both France and your native Belgium claim to have invented french-fried potatoes. Which side of the deep fryer do you stand? “I think it’s the Belgians because the best fries I’ve ever ate was in Belgium,” he replied quickly. “They’re not so bad here, but the quality of the fries in Belgium is higher.”

The St. Petersburg race weekend was Baguette’s first trip to the States. He closely followed the on- and off-track workings of the team during the Honda Grand Prix of St. Petersburg. “St. Petersburg was a great experience for me,” says Baguette, who celebrated his 24th birthday Feb. 23. “Racing in the U.S. is really different from Europe.  The ambiance is different – people are a lot happier and nicer than in Europe. I’m really looking forward to it.”

For the time being, Baguette is a houseguest of Conquest Racing owner and fellow Belgian Eric Bachelart and his family in Indianapolis.

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