Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing
103rd Running of the Indianapolis 500
NTT IndyCar Series
PRACTICE NOTES/QUOTES – May 20, 2019
1) Simon Pagenaud 228.441 mph
18) Jordan King 226.118 mph
22) Takuma Sato 226.017 mph
25) Graham Rahal 225.747 mph GRAHAM RAHAL, No. 15 United Rentals Dallara/Honda/Firestone:
“We’re not there right now but we’re going to work hard to get there. It seems like we’ve got a lack of pace and the car balance isn’t great in traffic. It’s a little bit inconsistent lap-to-lap and it’s creating some challenges for sure. I’m a little bit baffled right now. The conditions are not ideal; they aren’t like anything we’re actually going to have on race day. It makes it tough to understand what we can take from today into the end of the week for Carb Day and into Sunday. Most likely very little of it is going to translate but you still have to be strong on any given day.”
- FAST FACTS: He will start 17th for his 12th Indy 500. His best qualifying position in the Indy 500 is fourth in 2009 with Newman/Haas/Lanigan Racing and best finish is third with Service Central Chip Ganassi Racing in 2011 after he led six laps. He ran in the top-five in seven of his 10 previous races here. Detailed Indy 500 information available upon request. Has SIX IndyCar Series wins (2008 – St. Pete street course; 2015 – Fontana Super Speedway, Mid-Ohio road course; 2016 – Texas Super Speedway; 2017 Detroit Race 1, Detroit Race 2) and THREE poles (2009 – St. Pete street course, Kansas oval; 2017 – Detroit Race 1 street) and his highest series season-ending standing is fourth place in 2015… He is currently seventh in series standings with 113 points, only 33 out of third place.
TAKUMA SATO, No. 30 Mi-Jack / Panasonic Dallara/Honda/Firestone: “I think it was a productive day. We learned so much running in the pack today. I was able to follow the cars due to the conditions being a lot cooler today. There are still a few things we need to get done before Car Day and I think we gathered quite good data today. I feel the conditions were pretty similar to the first three days of practice. But I don’t expect it to be this cold for next weekend and if it is, I think everyone will be racing in a pack. I think the higher temperature will separate the field and I think we’ll be on the positive end of that. I feel there is good potential but we need to work a little harder.”
- FAST FACTS: The 2017 Champion of the Indy 500 will start 14th for his 10th Indy 500 in 2019 and third with RLL. In 2012 with RLL, he was alongside eventual winner Franchitti in Turn 1 on the final lap but his race ended due to contact after he was squeezed down on the apron and lost control of his race car. Prior to his 2017 win with Andretti from his best start of fourth place, his highest finish was 13th in 2013 and 2015 – both with A.J. Foyt Racing… Has FOUR IndyCar Series wins (2013 – Long Beach street course, 2017 – Indy 500 oval, 2018 – Portland road, 2019 – Barber road ) and EIGHT poles (2011 Iowa oval, Edmonton street; 2013 Houston Race 1 street; 2014 St. Pete street, Detroit Race 2 street; 2017 Detroit Race 2, Pocono oval; 2019 Barber road). He is fifth in series standings with 132 points.
JORDAN KING, No. 42 Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone: “We had a bit of a cough and a splutter at the start of the session with a few issues but once we got going I had reasons to be happy with the car. On our own and in traffic we were pretty good. I closed up to the cars in front and managed to get past a couple. I think it’s really tricky in a long train to get past just because it checks up a lot and everyone got the tow down the next straight. Maybe there’s something we can try and work on Friday in a multiple car tow. Overall I’m much happier today in traffic actually overtaking people and making some progress. It was a solid end to the session, but obviously we need to sort out what happened at the beginning of the session.”
- FAST FACTS: He will start 26th for his first oval race and first Indianapolis 500… Competed in 11 road and street course races with Ed Carpenter Racing with a best start of fourth at St. Pete in his debut and a best finish of 11th at Toronto. He participated in a 2018 pre-season test at the Phoenix International Raceway oval before the season-opener at St. Petersburg but that was his only oval experience.
NEXT UP: The full field will take part in media tours across the United States on Tuesday. Graham Rahal will be in Detroit, Takuma Sato will be in Columbus, Ohio and Jordan King will attend the annual rookie luncheon in Indianapolis and then travel to Dayton, Ohio. Final practice will take place from 11-12 p.m. ET on Carb Day on Friday, May 24.
TIL NEXT TIME, I AM STILL WORKING ON MY REDNECK!