James Hinchcliffe, No. 27 GoDaddy Chevrolet
James Hinchcliffe, the only three-time race winner this season, heads to Pocono Raceway after clinching the twin checkers in Iowa two weeks ago. He is currently fourth in the IZOD IndyCar Series points standings.
“Everybody is really excited to get to Pocono. First of all, there’s a lot of history there and we love going to tracks with history. Secondly, it’s a new challenge for everyone and I think every team believes that they will be the ones to get the jump on the field at a new venue. Of course, only one of us can be right! But the test went well, I think the racing is going to be just like Indy, and in case you missed it that race was nuts! We’ve had good momentum on the GoDaddy Chevy the last three weeks, obviously capped off with the Iowa win last race. The big thing for us is to keep that trend going, not only to keep us in the title fight but also to have the confidence high heading into Toronto!”
Did You Know: Hinch is previously a recipient of both the ‘Greg Moore Legacy Award’ (2010) and the ‘Gilles Villeneuve Award’ (2007) — the only Canadian to hold this honor.
Ryan Hunter-Reay, No. 1 DHL Chevrolet
DHL driver Ryan Hunter-Reay enters the Pocono race weekend ranked second in the title fight after capturing victory two times this year (Barber, Milwaukee) and six top-five finishes. Thus far in the 2013 IZOD IndyCar season, no driver has led laps in all 10 races. Reigning champion Hunter-Reay tops the charts with seven races led for a total of 216 laps.
“Racing 400 miles at Pocono will be a new challenge for every team and driver in the series, which really makes things interesting. No one really knows what to expect. We have a different tire compound and downforce package compared to what we tested last week, so I’m not quite sure what we’ll have to deal with this weekend. It’s a clean sheet of paper for everyone and I think that bodes well for the No. 1 DHL team. Looking ahead, we have an exciting week and a half coming up with the Pocono race, Turbo movie premier in New York (City), Toronto race week and then the ESPY awards in LA. I want to thank all the fans, DHL, Sun Drop and Chevy for their votes and support.”
Did You Know: Ryan, the only American to visit Victory Lane so far this season, has been nominated for an ESPY Award in the “Best Driver” category. This is his first ever ESPY nomination.
Marco Andretti, No. 25 RC Cola Chevrolet
Marco Andretti, currently second in the points standings, hails from Nazareth, Penn. just minutes away from Pocono’s “Tricky Triangle” which will play home to this weekend’s Pocono IndyCar 400. The third-generation racer has eight top-10 finishes in 10 starts this season. This weekend will mark his 125th career start and his first at Pocono Raceway.
“The last three races have been strong for the RC Cola Chevy, but we maybe gave up a couple of wins when it came down to it. Pocono is basically my home town, so it would be an awesome place to close the gap to the points lead. I think we can have the car to do it, we just need to execute.”
Did You Know: If you’re in the Pocono area this weekend, you can meet Marco at Gerrity’s Shur Save (320 Meadow Ave, Scranton, PA) Friday from 4-6 p.m.
E.J. Viso, No. 5 Team Venezuela PDVSA CITGO Chevrolet
E.J. Viso heads to his first start at Pocono Raceway sitting 11th in the championship points fight. The Venezuelan clinched his fifth top-10 finish of the season two weeks ago at Iowa Speedway.
“Heading back to a 2.5-mile oval, it’s something that I can see is going to be good. With the pace we had during the (Indianapolis) 500 – it was awesome; going back to a long track is going to work in our favor. Two weeks ago at Iowa, practice wasn’t the best for me as we experienced some issues with the engine, but I have a lot of confidence in the Chevrolet team and that they already have my engine back up to speed. I can’t wait to have another weekend, and Pocono, I think, is going to be an amazing race.”