Ryan Hunter-Reay, No. 1 DHL Chevrolet
Ryan Hunter-Reay led for 35 laps tonight in Texas and finished the 228-lap race in the second position, his fourth top-five finish of the season. The American maintains his third-place standing in the IZOD IndyCar Series Championship points standings.
“Man, the drivers had to drive it tonight, and that No. 1 DHL Chevy was great. We made the most of it and we kinda’ lost it there when that yellow (flag) came out, our strategy was such that we needed that yellow not to come and we had a good shot at winning it today thought. It’s just… man, after a long day like that we need to down some Sun Drops. That was, I’ll tell ya… that was interesting. That was hard to even get by some of the slower traffic. You were just searching everywhere for grip; I had so many catches out there I thought were going into the wall. It’s going to be tough to go to sleep tonight.”
Marco Andretti, No. 25 RC Cola Chevrolet
RC Cola driver Marco Andretti moved to second in the championship points standings after his fifth-place finish at Texas Motor Speedway – the third-generation driver’s seventh top-seven finish of the season. Andretti led 57 of the race’s 228 laps after starting from the second position.
“It’s always easier to be the Monday morning quarterback. I think (pit strategy) worked out for Ryan (Hunter-Reay) – he had a vibration and came in early. He went out, running some quick laps and he didn’t catch a yellow. We tried to do the same thing, we caught the yellow and the RC Cola car ended up a lap down. So, it’s unfortunate and to top it all off the worst guy in the championship fight against me won, but congrats to him (laughter). We’ll move on to IndyFest next week and try to make the points back.”
James Hinchcliffe, No. 27 GoDaddy Chevrolet
Hinchcliffe gained three position in tonight’s Firestone 550 to finish ninth in the GoDaddy Chevrolet. The Canadian will head to next week’s Milwaukee IndyFest ranked ninth in the championship points standings.
“At the end of the day, I’m pretty pleased with a top 10; it was a tough night. The whole setup with the new tire and downforce configuration made it tough to drive, the GoDaddy guys gave me a good car, but I think we were a little hampered by track position. Clean air was definitely king today, and starting back where we did, we had to fight in the thick of it a lot more. We ended up stopping it a bit early on the first two stops, and we got both those yellows – just really hurt us. We lost a lap and had to earn it back. If we had managed to have the yellows fall at a better time for us, I think maybe we would have been a bit higher. But it’s so close, it’s so tight, everybody was struggling… we’re just happy to bring it home in one piece.”
E.J. Viso, No. 5 Team Venezuela PDVSA CITGO Chevrolet
Making his fifth consecutive top-five start, E.J. Viso was seen as high as second during the Firestone 550 from Texas Motor Speedway until he was issued a drive-thru penalty for hitting pit lane equipment during a pit stop. The Venezuelan brought home his No. 5 Chevy to finish 10th.
“Tough race. I think I got an unfair penalty… we had everything to finish in the top three. I’m not very impressed in how this situation was handled, and I feel they penalize certain people for certain things and not others in certain situations. The penalty happened because I hit one of Ryan (Hunter Reay)’s tires during the pit stop, but I just touched it and he came back out in his original position. For me, they made the wrong call. These decisions can affect the sport as we just saw.”