Ryan Hunter-Reay, No. 1 DHL Chevrolet
Ryan Hunter-Reay sits second in the IZOD IndyCar Series championship points standing heading into this weekend’s 10th round of competition. Fresh off victory in Milwaukee last weekend, the defending Iowa Corn Indy 250 winner has started each previous round of competition this season eighth or higher on the grid and has recorded two wins and five top-five finishes.
“The Iowa Speedway oval is one of a kind; a very unique track that makes for some of the closest racing of the year. Last year’s race came down to the wire and I expect the same this year. The strategy is certainly different this time around with the heat races paying points, so we need to focus on not only being fast at the end of the race, but coming right out of the box strong. Iowa, last year, was the second win in our three race streak, so we need to operate at our full potential to gain maximum points for DHL and Chevy in the title fight.”
Did You Know: With the Milwaukee victories as bookends, Hunter-Reay has amassed 570 points over 17 races. That includes a series-high six wins and four other top-five finishes.
E.J. Viso, No. 5 Team Venezuela PDVSA CITGO Chevrolet
E.J. Viso’s career best finish came at Iowa Speedway in 2010 with a third place. The Venezuelan is on a six-race run of top-five starts and currently sits 12th in the championship points fight.
“I’m very excited we’re heading to Iowa. I had my best result in IndyCar there in 2010 (third). I believe with the momentum that we keep building race after race, finishing in the top five last week at Milwaukee, we just have a lot of energy. I have a lot of faith in what we are able to do as a crew… Iowa is a place we’ve done well in the past.“
Did You Know: Viso has led 15 laps so far this season – five at the Indianapolis 500 and 10 at last weekend’s Milwaukee IndyFest.
James Hinchcliffe, No. 27 GoDaddy Chevrolet
Fresh off a top-five finish at the Milwaukee Mile, Hinchcliffe heads to Iowa Speedway where he has a best finish of ninth (2011); Sunday will mark the Toronto native’s third IndyCar start at the 0.875-mile oval.
“Looking forward to going back to Iowa. Obviously the team had a great result there last year, and we should have been a part of that… we were running well up until our accident. I really like short-track racing in this series; the cars are fun on that track which leads to some really good racing. I wish it was a night race again – I really enjoyed that format, but we’ll see how it goes in the day. It’s a big race for GoDaddy as they have an office in the area, so I hope to bring home a good result.”
Did You Know: Last weekends Milwaukee IndyFest was the Mayor of Hinchtown’s 40th career IZOD IndyCar Series start. In 40 starts the Canadian has recorded two wins and 19 top-10 finishes.
Marco Andretti, No. 25 RC Cola Chevrolet
RC Cola driver Marco Andretti now sits third in the championship points fight, only 50 points out of the lead. The third-generation racer started from the third position for the 2012 IndyCar race in Newton Iowa and finished second. His best finish at the 7/8-mile tri-oval came in 2011 where he took the twin checkers for his second career IndyCar victory.
“Both on the No. 25 side and as a team we’ve traditionally been strong in Iowa, and we need to continue that this year. Milwaukee didn’t go as planned for the RC (Cola) Chevy so we really need to make up some points and get the lead back – this as good of place as any to do that. We’re coming for a win but definitely would like to at least keep the consistency going. With the heat races paying extra points… well… we’re aiming for total domination and maximum points.”
Did You Know: Andretti is aiming for his first win of the season but has four podium finishes in six Iowa Speedway starts.