Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing
Honda Indy Toronto – Streets around Exhibition Place
NTT IndyCar Series
RACE NOTES/QUOTES – Sunday, July 14, 2019
GRAHAM RAHAL, No. 15 United Rentals Dallara/Honda/Firestone: “Will (Power) made a move on me, I made a move on Marco (Andretti) and everybody just piled up. It’s disappointing. In hindsight, it’s even more disappointing because I think we have a car that was extremely fast today. We legitimately passed 10 cars for position today from 19th all the way up. It was frustrating. I think he (Power) was way overly aggressive for Lap 1. When you can see Will in the mirror, you can damn near see his eyeballs as big as the moon. You know what’s coming. I should have just let him go, to be honest. He probably would have just punted Marco no matter what, he would have punted Marco and I probably would have been collected anyway, but look, it’s over. We got going, our race car was absolutely phenomenal today. We passed a ton of cars. We finished ninth. Honestly, this is going to be one that stings a little because I think we had a car that was easily a podium car. I could see (Alexander) Rossi coming out of the pits and I was catching him on old tires. Pace-wise, we had more pace than anybody today. Good job to Honda and everybody on our team. Everybody did a good job. It’s just unfortunate.”
Started 12th and was pulling alongside Andretti when Power pulled up to go three wide into a turn which sent Power and Rahal into the tires. He was 20th when he was restarted and once the pits opened, he pitted to check for damage and returned to the track in 18th place. He cycles up to fourth place before his first scheduled stop on Lap 33 and was sixth before his third overall stop on Lap 53. He returned to the track in 12th and moved to 11th when he passed Pigot and ultimately took over ninth place by the checkered flag… It was his 14th Indy car race here and 15th overall including his 2006 Atlantic race… In 13 previous Indy car races, his best Toronto start is second in 2017 and his best finish is fifth in 2010 with Newman/Haas Racing. He has three, top-five starts and four, top-10 finishes.
His highest start of the season is second at Barber and his highest finish is fourth at Long Beach and Elkhart Lake.
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… Rahal is eighth in series point standings with a total of 266.
TAKUMA SATO, No. 30 Mi-Jack / Panasonic Dallara/Honda/Firestone: “We had a good start and were settling into the race. We were still moving up places and on plan for our pit stop strategy and running strong in fifth so it’s sad that I lost the drive and had to come in. It’s a real pity. The boys did a great job, we had great pit stops, we were really strong and had everything under control. And nobody retired today so it really hurts in the point standings but we have to take some positives away.”
He started 10th and passed Pigot and Andretti on the start for eighth place. He managed his softer alternate tires well and cycled into the lead on Lap 1 before his first stop on Lap 19. He returned to the track in 10th place as others were pitting and was in fifth by Lap 35. He maintained that position through another stop until Lap 69 when the team told him his race car was on fire. He had taken over fifth in series standings as the field ran at the time but returned in 22nd place and remained sixth with 301 points… Was his 11th race here. In his 10 previous races, his best start is eighth in 2015 and his best finish is fifth in 2016 and Race 2 in 2014 – all with A.J. Foyt Racing. He has four top-10 finishes… He has finished no lower than seventh place in four of the last five races dating back to fifth place in Dual 1 of Detroit and finished the past two races fourth (Road America) and third (Iowa Speedway)… 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, Texas oval). He is ranked sixth in the series point standings with 301 points.
TIL NEXT TIME, I AM STILL WORKING ON MY REDNECK!