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Iowa Corn Indy 250 – Drivers’ Post-Race Notes & Quotes

IOWA CORN INDY 250 POST-RACE NOTES:

 

JAMES HINCHCLIFFE

• This is Hinchcliffe’s third career IZOD IndyCar Series victory (St. Pete, Brazil 2013)

• Previous best finish at Iowa was ninth in 2011.

 

RYAN HUNTER-REAY

• Second consecutive podium finish at Iowa (won in 2012).

• Second consecutive Andretti Autosport 1-2 finish at Iowa.

 

TONY KANAAN

• Has finished on the podium in last four starts at Iowa

 

Drivers with career best Iowa finishes today:

• James Hinchcliffe 1st   – Previous best of ninth (2011)

• Ed Carpenter  4th – Previous best of sixth (2007)

• Graham Rahal 5th -  Previous best of ninth in (2010, ’12)

• Oriol Servia 7th  – Previous best of 14th in (2011)

 

IOWA CORN INDY 250 POST-RACE QUOTES:

 

JAMES HINCHCLIFFE (No. 27 GoDaddy Chevrolet): ”We just had to go off of experience and all goes to the team.  We have a great track record here but this year with so many different things and a day race, everything was different.  We took a bit of risk.  We wanted to make sure the car wouldn’t get understeer because that kills you in traffic.  I can’t believe we led that whole thing.   The guys were awesome in the pits.”

 

RYAN HUNTER-REAY (No. 1 DHL Chevrolet): “It was so hard to catch back up to James (Hinchcliffe) and then lapped traffic.  It’s one thing if you’re a lap down but if you’re five laps down or six laps down just making it tough on the leaders was uncalled for.  But hey, we can back from 22nd or whatever we were to finish second.  Definitely had the car to win today but just made a mistake there trying to get by Graham (Rahal), keeping my foot in it. The front just had no grip on it when I turned to pop out and pass him.  Easy mistake.  We had a tough weekend.  To come second out of this thing, I’m pretty please with that.  Good job to James (Hinchcliffe).  It was a good day in the point for the No. 1 DHL Chevy. Definitely have to be happy about that.”

TAKUMA SATO (No. 14 ABC Supply Co./ A.J. Foyt Racing): ”We made some gains in the first stint as well as on the pit stop so we gradually moved up positions. On the restarts I really had fun and gained some good spots so it looked like it was going to be quite an exciting race for the ABC Supply team because the car was working well. But then after that second pit stop I started to struggle with speed. We tried to figure it out by doing different engine maps and mixtures but it didn’t work. Finally we had to pull out. It’s very disappointing to be unable to finish the race.”

HELIO CASTRONEVES (No. 3 Hitachi Team Penske Chevrolet): ”It was a good job today by the Hitachi team. We drove as hard as we could today. When they told me I came in 8th, I was like ‘What?’ I certainly felt we had a better car than that. I guess in traffic we got held up coming in and out of the pits which cost us some positions. The Hitachi car really came alive with about 50 laps to go and it felt great. Maybe it was a little too late for us. But, we still have the points lead and we will look for a better result in Pocono.”

E.J. VISO (No. 5 Team Venezuela PDVSA Citgo Chevrolet): ”It was a pretty up and down race for me. I think at some points, especially at the beginning of the race, we showed tremendous speed, and I thought at that point we were going to make it to the front.  Unfortunately in the second and third stint, we didn’t have the similar speed and I went to the back. I recovered again to finish in the top-10. It was not the best weekend for us, even from the beginning. But I am happy for my two teammates James (Hinchcliffe) and Ryan (Hunter-Reay) for finishing first and second.”

ALEX TAGLIANI (No. 98 Barracuda Racing Honda): ”We were fighting really hard. It would’ve been nice to have a solid top ten finish. I got caught on the high side when I tried to pass Dario [Franchitti]. I touched the marbles – my mistake. I’m sorry to the Barracuda Racing guys who have been working so hard. I got caught in the grey. I pushed up and just tagged the wall.”

MARCO ANDRETTI (No. 25 RC Cola Chevrolet): “It was a total handful when it came to traffic. I’m disappointed we couldn’t get the RC Cola car up there with the teammates but congrats to those two (James Hinchcliffe and Ryan Hunter-Reay).”

TONY KANAAN (No. 11 Sunoco “Turbo” KVRT-SH Racing Chevrolet): “We had a good car.  We got into a little bit of a problem with some heat temperature so we had to lose a few spots in the pits trying to pull an inlet out of the side pod so the engine could breathe a little bit better.  It was a good race.  We had a podium finish and we will take it.  I like when people race you hard and it is what it is.”

WILL POWER (No. 12 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet): ”Tough day for the Verizon team. The rear handling of the car was an issue pretty much from the start of the race. It was frustrating because we tried everything we could to make it better but we just couldn’t get it to where we wanted it. It was a good job in the pits by the Verizon guys and we look forward to testing this week to make sure we feel good heading into Pocono.”

JOSEF NEWGARDEN (No. 67 Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing Honda): ”We worked through the race as best we could. It was tough in traffic, but we just kept trying to maximize everything. We made it to the end with no incidents, and gained seven spots after being in a hole, that was no fault to our own.  Not a bad day from the spots we gained. We definitely wanted more, but I think we did the best we could for the situation at hand, so I’m excited to move on to the next one.”

ED CARPENTER (No. 20 Fuzzy’s Vodka/Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet): ”It was a good run for the Fuzzy’s Vodka Chevy team.  We moved up to the front early and, then on the second stint, we had a understeer condition that sent us back in the field a little.  It was a long slow fight to the front again after that.  The Fuzzy’s guys gave me a great car today and we probably weren’t as aggressive enough early in the race on our changes.  But we made all of the right changes late and we were fast at the end.  I think we had a car fast enough to win today.  Our last green flag pit stop didn’t go as we wanted, but we came back and nearly got a podium today.  Overall, we still got a top-five finish today so it wasn’t a bad day for us.  This is a really fun place to race.  There were multiple lanes today and I ran both the low and the high groove.  Seemed like others were only good in one lane.  I just wish the race was a little longer for us because we were closing fast on the leaders.  But we’ll move on and go to Pocono.  I’m really looking forward to that race.”  

SIMONA DE SILVESTRO (No. 78 Nuclear Entergy Areva KVRT Chevrolet): ”The car was better today than yesterday, but it’s still not quite there yet. It feels like we’re in damage control mode right now. We rolled off the truck not so good and didn’t have a ton of track time to get it fixed, so we got in kind of a pickle there. For the race we tried a few different things which got us closer, but it was still a long race for us.  I’m excited to go testing and hopefully we can turn all of this around. We’ve struggled the last two races, so we’ll just have to keep working on it.”

GRAHAM RAHAL (No. 15 Midas/Big O Tires Honda): ”The race was good.  I didn’t quite have James’ (Hinchcliffe) speed today but we were close. And as you know, coming from where we have been over the past few weeks, this feels pretty good. But obviously I’m disappointed to not finish higher; we wanted a podium today if not better. The guys have really worked hard to get this Midas / Big O Tires car back to the front and we’re getting closer.  We struggled a bit at the start of the race. On the second set (of tires) the car came on for me and felt really, really magical. That’s when we went from 10th to second. I don’t know what it was at the end of the race, we just lost a little bit of overall grip and struggled a little bit. The last couple of laps when Ed (Carpenter) got me, I just couldn’t keep the thing turning. Earlier in that stint, I was chasing Hinchcliffe down but at the end of the race I was losing a little bit of everything in the car.  I’m proud of these guys because as I’ve said too many people, the last few weeks hasn’t been easy for us.  I’m really proud of the engineering staff and everyone.  For everybody to keep coming back week after week with their chins up means a lot to me. I felt like I could have won the race today. I don’t know how we lost a spot on that pit stop today because I thought we had a good stop, but we did and unfortunately we got behind Hunter-Reay and never really recovered.  I feel like I got robbed; I should have had a podium at least today but we’ll take a fifth.”

JAMES JAKES (No. 16 Acorn Stairlifts Honda): ”It was a difficult day all around. We just struggled in general from the start of the race. We will go back and analyze the data to figure out what happened. Obviously the No 15 car did a great job.  We will move on and look at what was wrong and try not to repeat it again.”

MICHAEL ANDRETTI (Team Owner, Andretti Autosport): ”It was another great day in Iowa.  We love coming here as a team. James (Hinchcliffe) did a heck of a job and it was a huge win for us. This is GoDaddy’s hometown , so it was great for them. Ryan (Hunter-Reay) did a great job. He broke his front wing early and came back from basically last to fight his way back second and that was a heck of a drive. We had four cars in the top-10 so it was a great day for our team.”

TRISTAN VAUTIER (No. 55 coastal.com/Schmidt Peterson Motorsports Honda): ”It was a good race for us even though you’re generally not too excited to finish 13th! I’m very excited about everything we learned today though. I was struggling before the race to run different grooves and be good in traffic. I feel like I took a huge step forward today at least on this type of track. I managed to run both grooves all race long. It’s tough when you start in the pack because you’re stuck in the train and you can go a lap down really quickly. There were a few times where I was running with the leaders at a good pace, so I’m happy to have a positive day for Schmidt Peterson Motorsports and our sponsor Coastal.com.”

ORIOL SERVIA (No. 4 National Guard Panther Racing Chevrolet): ”The National Guard Chevy was great all day. This is the first time I can remember that I didn’t ask for a single change to the car for an entire race. It was the restarts today that cost us; the best restart I had the No. 55 car almost spun in front of me and I had to check up. But I felt like we were faster than a lot of the guys around us all day today. To be honest, seeing that I was seventh at the end was a surprise because I felt like we were much higher than that, but a big thanks to the team and the National Guard for such a great car today.”

SIMON PAGENAUD (No. 77 Schmidt Hamilton HP Motorsports Honda): ”We were really strong on restarts today because the HP car was handling really well. At the end I’m not sure what we were missing because the car was really hooked up. I had a blast though. The restarts were fun, the racing was fun, and it was just a great day of competition. From the cockpit it was back and forth going as hard as you could into pit lane and getting out just as fast. We were trying to grab positions any way we could. Traffic played a big role in the race, but it was great for the HP car to be up front on an oval today.”

 

SEBASTIEN BOURDAIS (No. 7 Dragon Racing Chevrolet): ”It was a decent day; starting from where we were it was not easy. Every time you start at the back you have some restarts that play your way and some that do not. I had a really good one halfway through the race but then on one restart I got caught behind (E.J.) Viso because he was running my line and couldn’t get going so that put us in the back. After going a lap down I tried to be as less of a factor for the leaders but then you have to start to let people by and you can’t run your race anymore. We were able to make a lot of progress with the car from the heat race to the feature race. When you have to drive from the back and don’t have a rocket ship it’s pretty tough to make it up to the front.”

 

SEBASTIAN SAAVEDRA (No. 6 Dragon Racing Chevrolet): ”It was a very disappointing weekend for us. I am very frustrated after coming to Iowa with a lot of momentum and we were just not able to create a reliable car for the race. With having this little of practice time before the race, if you do not come with a well-balanced car it’s very hard to catch up to the front. The race for us was just a matter of keeping it a clean race. We made a bad call when we could have gained our one lap back in the beginning and the really finished the day early for us.”

SCOTT DIXON (No. 9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Honda): ”We had what I thought was a pretty good car today. From where we started we were able to move up and contend midway through the race. Unfortunately we encountered a misfire when we were in the top five after a restart and then just gradually faded back outside the top 10. We lost power at the end and will have to take a look and see what happened. Tough day for the Target team at Iowa.”

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Posted by on June 24, 2013. Filed under Breaking News,Indy Car. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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