Chip Ganassi Racing Advance Notes - Long Beach

Story posted - Apr 16 2013 10:59 PM

Target Chip Ganassi Racing Advance Notes

RACE SETUP

Race: Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach, April 21
Drivers: @scottdixon9 @dariofranchitti
Cars: No. 9 Target and No. 10 Target Hondas
Track: Streets of Long Beach, Calif. (1.968-mile street circuit)
TV: NBC Sports Network (4pm ET)
Social: @TCGRTeams #TeamTarget

BET YOU DIDN'T KNOW THAT

Ryan Briscoe Joins Chip Ganassi Racing for 97th Indianapolis 500: Four-time and reigning Indianapolis 500 Winners Chip Ganassi Racing Teams (CGRT) announced last week an agreement with former Target Chip Ganassi Racing driver Ryan Briscoe to pilot a fourth Honda entry with sponsorship from NTT DATA, a leading global IT services provider, for the 97th Running of the Indianapolis 500 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway (IMS) on May 26 (11AM, ABC). Briscoe will return to CGRT in the No. 8 NTT DATA Honda alongside three-time and reigning Indianapolis 500 Winner Dario Franchitti (No. 10 Target Honda), 2008 Indianapolis 500 Winner Scott Dixon (No. 9 Target Honda) and Charlie Kimball (No. 83 NovoLog FlexPen Honda) who is coming off a solid weekend in Round 2 of the IZOD IndyCar Series at Barber Motorsports Park. With the addition of Briscoe to the lineup, CGRT will be fielding entries for both the defending Indianapolis 500 polesitter and racewinner when the track opens Saturday, May 11.

Dario Makes His 250th Indy car Start in Long Beach: "It's been a long time but it's not just about being here, it's being here and trying to be competitive. If I continue to be competitive I'll be happy. The drive to continue is one thing, but it's also being realistic about being competitive. Right now, we're still able to do that. It's amazing to think of all those years doing this and the races I've got to win, people I've gotten to work with, the teammates I've had, the teams I've gotten to drive with, the friends I've made. This has been my life for a long time and I hope it continues for a long time because it was my dream to do this and I'm still here. It's a competitive environment and you're always gunning to try to be on top, and if you're not on top you want to be. That's what makes this sport so great, I think."

Bo Knows INDYCAR: 1985 Heisman Trophy winner and legendary professional two-sport athlete Bo Jackson joked that an Indy car has been on his Christmas list, but he had to attend the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama two weeks ago because it's yet to be under the Christmas tree. Jackson, a Birmingham native, was the grand marshal of the IZOD IndyCar Series race at Barber Motorsports Park, and spent time with team Target driver Dario Franchitti and Scott Dixon prior to giving the command to start engines. On his ride in the Indy car two-seater later that day, Jackson said, "The last time I tried to get into one (for a Nike commercial), they had to grease me up to get in." Bo is also working on some personal business ventures, including a bank...he jokingly told Dario and Scott he'd hook them up with some low interest rates because he knew they had good credit.

Season To Date: Dixon is one of just four drivers to finish in the top 10 in the first two IZOD Indy Car Series races (Helio Castroneves, Marco Andretti and Justin Wilson).

Milestone for Dixon: The New Zealander finished fourth for the fourth consecutive year at Barber Motorsports Park in Round 2 of the IZOD IndyCar Series. The podium finish of second marked the 100th top-five finish in his Indy car career that spans 203 starts.

Chip Ganassi Racing Teams, Unite: Chip Ganassi Racing Teams and Novo Nordisk are supporting Indy car driver Charlie Kimball in their 'Race With Insulin Unites' campaign again in Long Beach to promote diabetes awareness. This weekend all Chip Ganassi Racing Indy cars will race with blue wheels to simulate the blue circle that is the global symbol for the International Diabetes Federation.

Dixon Representing for Honda: In both the season-opening Honda Grand Prix of St. Petersburg and Round 2 at Barber Motorsports Park, Dixon was the highest-finishing Honda-powered driver. The Kiwi finished fifth in Round 1 and second in Round 2.

99 Wins and Counting...: The Target Racing Program, which began with Target and Chip Ganassi Racing in 1990, is just one win shy of the 100-win plateau. The first win for the program came in 1994 with Michael's Andretti's Indy car victory at Surfers Paradise, Australia, when the team was merely a two-car open wheel program. Ninety-eight wins later, the program's umbrella not only includes involvement in the IZOD IndyCar Series, but in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) and the GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series. The partnership between Target and Chip Ganassi Racing is one of the longest consecutive team partnerships in motor racing history.

#TEAMGANASSI

Follow Team Target on Twitter: Continue to follow Target Chip Ganassi Racing on their official team Twitter page. Find in-race updates and weekly news on the No.9 and No.10 teams throughout the 2013 season by following "@TCGRTeams".

CGRT Mobile App: Download the Chip Ganassi Racing Teams mobile app for the latest driver news, event information, social media updates and exclusive content. Head to the iTunes store and check it out: http://bit.ly/YGJQxf.

TWEET OF THE WEEK

Scott Dixon on the addition of a fourth Chip Ganassi Racing entry for Ryan Briscoe for the Indianapolis 500: "Excited for @Ryan_Briscoe for the 500! Looking forward to teaming up again. Congrats! @TCGRTeams"

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW FOR BARBER

Scott Dixon and No. 9 Target Team

In the Off-Weekend: The driver of the No. 9 Target Honda spent the off week...cleaning his garage. His plan is to have the floors epoxied in the coming weeks when the weather breaks in Indianapolis. After the garage, he spent time cleaning out his bedroom and closet so he and wife Emma could put new carpet in. Between his housing duties he trained hard at the gym and watched the Formula 1 coverage from China on NBC Sports Network.

Last Time at Long Beach: Grid penalties moved Dixon up from his qualifying position of 12th to start fifth. By the end of lap one he worked his way up to fourth, and ran the opening 19 laps in the top-five. The No. 9 Target Honda made its first pit-stop of the day on lap 20 when a full-course caution waved. Dixon returned to the course and worked his way through traffic, before his day ended early as his car stalled coming to a restart on lap 29. He and the car would remain behind the turn eight wall for the remainder of the event after INDYCAR did not elect to tow the car back to pit lane.

Race Rewind: After making his first appearance of the season in the Firestone Fast 6 qualifying round at Barber Motorsports Park, Dixon managed to stay in the top 10 in the opening laps after the No. 12 car forced him to check up to avoid an accident. The No. 9 Target team made three stops throughout the day and charged up to second place in the final stint. Dixon dueled with the eventual race-winning No. 1 car, but took home second place, which marked the team's first podium result of the 2013 season.

The Ice Man Returns: The two-time IZOD IndyCar Series Champion (2003, 2008) and 2008 Indianapolis 500 Winner returns in 2013 for his fifth season alongside four-time Champion (2007, 2009, 2010, 2011) and three-time Indianapolis 500 Winner (2007, 2010, 2012) Franchitti. Dixon is tied with Rick Mears for 10th place on the all-time Indy car wins list (1909-Present) with 29 victories and is tied with Bobby Rahal and Rex Mays for 16th on the all-time poles list with 18.

Go with What you Know: 2013 marks Dixon's 12th year with Team Target - the longest tenure for any driver in team history (1990-Present).

Dario Franchitti and No. 10 Target Team

In the Off-Weekend: The last time an Indy car turned a lap in competition at Pocono Raceway was Aug. 20, 1989. Franchitti recently got the opportunity to test on the "Tricky Triangle" as Firestone Racing continued its due diligence with a day of tire evaluation in advance of the July 7 IZOD IndyCar Series race. Firestone engineers used the Indianapolis 500 tire specification as a baseline and then tested a number of compounds and construction alternatives. Driver feedback, race team engineer input and tire performance data collected from the test was evaluated to determine the best tire specification to develop for the race weekend. Franchitti was the only driver at the test with perspective of the tri-oval, having competed on the track in a stock car in 2008. "I think it will be a very fun place to drive an Indy car," Franchitti said. "They resurfaced it and put catch fending up (since he raced there) and I think it will be an amazing race for our cars."

Last Time at Long Beach: Due to 10-spot grid penalties for much of the field, the No. 10 Target Honda started from the pole. Franchitti held the point at the start and led until a lap-five restart. He completed the first 30 laps of the race in the top-five, until contact with Ryan Briscoe on lap 30 forced him to pit-road for repairs on lap 34. After replacing the front wing, Franchitti returned to the track in 16th. The remainder of the race went caution-free, making gaining ground difficult. A mechanical issue on the last lap would prevent the team from crossing the finish line. The Target team was credited with 15th.

Race Rewind: Franchitti and the No. 10 team weren't very fortunate at Barber Motorsports Park , starting 17th and finishing 25th after a header problem just before the half-way point caused electrical issues, which eventually took out the clutch and ended their day. The team made up ground in the opening laps going from 17th to 12th in the opening stint, and pit early to go off strategy on Lap 19. Lap 43 would be the last lap turned for the No. 10 team as they went back to the Target garage for repairs.

Dario Returns: Four-time IZOD IndyCar Series Champion (2007, 2009, 2010, 2011) and three-time Indianapolis 500 Winner, Franchitti, returns to TCGR in 2013 for his fifth season alongside two-time Champion and 2008 Indianapolis 500 Winner, Dixon. Franchitti is tied for seventh on the all-time wins list with 31 and holds sole possession of eighth on the all-time poles list with 29.

Rarified Air: Dario is one of only five drivers to win the Indianapolis 500 and the series title in the same season more than once. By winning the 2012 Indianapolis 500, he became just the 10th driver in history to win the race three times.

ROSTER

Mike Hull - Managing Director
Barry Wanser - Team Manager, Competition
Scott Harner - Team Manager, Administration

No. 9

Crew Chief/Stop Sign/Wheelgun Hose: Ricky Davis
Shocks/Firebottle: Chris Clark
Engineer: Eric Bretzman
Engines/Radio: Troy Scheller
Assistant Engineer: Brian Welling
Fueler: Todd DeNeve
Front End/(L/R): Tyler Rees
Gear Box/Air Jack: Andy Schneider
Front End/(R/R): Greg Shuker
Rear Tire Helper: Jake Klomp
Rear End/(L/F): Adam Rovazzini
Spotter: Robbie Fast
Rear End/(R/F): Blair Julian
Floater: Wayne Westplate

No. 10

Crew Chief/(R/F): Kevin O'Donnell
Shocks/Firebottle: Kevin Edgley
Engineer: Chris Simmons
Engines/Radio/(R/R): Troy Scheller
Assistant Engineer: Travis Jacobson
Gear Box/Fueler: Robby Page
Front End/Rear Tire Helper: Nick Ford
Stop Sign/Front Wheelgun Hose: Jason Richardson
Front End/Tire Helper: Gilbert Swafford
Rear Tire Helper: Rick Pearson
Rear End/(L/R): Jaime Coates
Floater/(L/F): Wayne Westplate
Rear End/Air Jack: Dave Pena
Spotter: Scott Harner

=====

Novo Nordisk Chip Ganassi Racing Advance Notes

RACE SETUP

Race: Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach, April 21
Driver: Charlie Kimball @racewithinsulin
Cars: No. 83 NovoLog FlexPen Honda
Track: Streets of Long Beach, Calif. (1.968-mile street circuit)
TV: NBC Sports Network (4pm ET)
Social: @CGRTeams #TeamGanassi #RWIunites

BET YOU DIDN'T KNOW THAT

Career-Weekend for Kimball: Novo Nordisk Chip Ganassi Racing driver Charlie Kimball posted a strong weekend at the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park in Birmingham, Alabama. Kimball opened up the race weekend by finishing the first practice session fourth-overall, marking his highest-ever finishing position in a practice session in 32 career IZOD IndyCar Series race weekends. The No. 83 NovoLog FlexPen driver continued to show strength by making it to the Firestone Fast Six of qualifying for the first time in his career, posting quick times amongst seasoned frontrunners, Scott Dixon, Will Power, Helio Castroneves and 2012 IZOD IndyCar Series champion, Ryan Hunter-Reay. Charlie started the race day off strong by wrapping-up the pre-race warm-up in first position, marking yet another career-best finish for the 28-year-old. After starting the race from a career-best fifth position, and with 47 laps remaining, Kimball led a total of three laps on the 2.38-mile road course, marking the first time he has led laps on a street/road course, the second-time he has led laps in his IZOD IndyCar Series career (Indianapolis 500, 2012) and making him the only Ganassi driver to lead laps this season. To wrap up his career-weekend, Kimball would cross the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama finish-line in fourth, the second-highest finish of his IZOD IndyCar Series career (Second at Toronto, 2012). With the finish, Kimball moved six positions (from 12th to sixth) in the IZOD IndyCar Series point standings.

Race With Insulin Unites, Takes Over: Chip Ganassi Racing Teams and Novo Nordisk supported Charlie Kimball with his Race with Insulin(TM) Unites campaign by uniting his teammates from NASCAR, INDYCAR and GRAND-AM Series through the weekend of April 5-7. Kimball sported a Race With Insulin paint-scheme at Barber Motorsports Park, in the IZOD IndyCar Series, while his teammate, Jamie McMurray, used a similar Race With Insulin paint-scheme at Martinsville Speedway in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series. In addition, Kimball's IZOD IndyCar Series teammates Dario Franchitti and Scott Dixon, GRAND-AM teammates Memo Rojas and Scott Pruett and NASCAR driver, Juan Pablo Montoya showed support by running unique blue wheels during their respective races through the weekend. The wheels signified the blue circle which is the global symbol of the International Diabetes Federation (IDF). The campaign was tailored to raising awareness for those who are living for diabetes and the importance of staying on track with disease management. To wrap up the weekend, Kimball and his NASCAR Sprint Cup Series (NSCS) Chip Ganassi Racing teammate, Jamie McMurray, both finished within the top-10 sporting a Race With Insulin paint-scheme (Kimball-fourth, McMurray-seventh). Kimball and his IndyCar teammates, Franchitti and Dixon, will continue the Race With Insulin theme through the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach weekend. The No. 9, No. 10 and No. 83 will again sport blue wheels, blue visor strips and Race With Insulin Unites logos, while Kimball will drive the inverted Race with Insulin Unites paint-scheme for a second weekend.

Ganassi Signs with Briscoe for the 500: Four-time and reigning Indianapolis 500 Winners Chip Ganassi Racing Teams (CGRT) announced in April an agreement with former Target Chip Ganassi Racing driver Ryan Briscoe to pilot a fourth Indianapolis 500 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway (IMS) on May 26 (11AM, ABC). Briscoe will return to CGRT in the No. 8 DATA Honda alongside three-time and reigning Indianapolis 500 Winner Dario Franchitti (No. 10 Target Honda), 2008 Indianapolis 500 Winner Scott Dixon (No. 9 Target Honda) and Kimball (No. 83 NovoLog FlexPen Honda).. With the addition of Briscoe to the lineup, CGRT will be fielding entries for both the defending Indianapolis 500 polesitter and racewinner when the track opens Saturday, May 11.

#TEAMGANASSI

Follow Team Novo Nordisk on Twitter: Continue to follow Novo Nordisk Chip Ganassi Racing on their official team Twitter page. Find in-race updates and weekly news on the No.83 crew throughout the 2013 season by following "@CGRTeams".

CGRT Mobile App: Download the Chip Ganassi Racing Teams mobile app for the latest driver news, event information, social media updates and exclusive content. Head to the iTunes store and check it out: http://bit.ly/YGJQxf.

TWEET OF THE WEEK

@racewithinsulin: "Heading to dinner in downtown Indy and then going to see 42. Haven't been this excited for a movie in a while! @dodgers"

WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW FOR BARBER

Charlie Kimball and No. 83 Novo Nordisk Team

Batter-Up!: Charlie will attend batting practice and throw out the first pitch in the Los Angeles Dodgers vs. San Diego Padres game at Dodger Stadium on Wednesday, April 17. As a Southern California native from Camarillo, California, Kimball is a lifelong Dodger fan.

In the Off-Weekend: "CK" spent the off-week helping out his local community in Indianapolis, Indiana. After his strong performance at Barber Motorsports Park, Kimball volunteered to be a guest reader for a fourth-grade class at North Wayne Elementary. This visit wrapped up a fun week for the kids, with a theme centered on racing and a fieldtrip to Indianapolis Motor Speedway as a part of their 'Race into Reading' program.

Hometown Hero: The Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach is a hometown race for Kimball. The SoCal native will have over 60 friends and family members watching from the stands as he competes on one of his favorite tracks.

Penny for your Thoughts: Ever wonder what Charlie and his team up to during the typical race weekend? Check out Charlie's live blog at www.CharlieKimball.com for race weekend schedules, post-practice thoughts, race day preparations, and behind-the-scenes photos.

Last Time at Long Beach: Kimball finished 18th in the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach on the Streets of Long Beach. The Novo Nordisk Chip Ganassi team ran a solid race, holding a top-10 position for 68 laps and running as high as third on lap 52 of the 85-lap race. Kimball made his final pit stop for fuel on lap 80 and suffered a mechanical issue when exiting the pits. As a result, the No.83 NovoLog FlexPen Honda dropped 14 positions with five laps to go, and retired from the event taking an 18th-place finish on the 1.968-mile, 11-turn street circuit.

Race Rewind: Kimball finished fourth in the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park in Birmingham, Alabama. After posting a fast-six qualifying effort and finishing up the pre-race warm-up in first position, Kimball started the race from a career-best fifth position in the No. 83 NovoLog FlexPen Honda. The Novo Nordisk Chip Ganassi Team showed strength early-on and advanced to fourth-position within the first lap. After the initial lap, the race would go under its first and only caution period for debris in turn 9 after contact in the back of the field. Six laps into the 90-lap race, the course would return to green, where Kimball battled to hold-off the No.19 and keep fourth-position. On lap nine, he would continue to show strength by passing the No. 25 to nab third. As cars began to cycle through pit stops, Kimball advanced to second position, until he made his first stop of the race on lap 26 for fresh primary tires and fuel. With 47 laps remaining, Kimball led a total of three laps on the 2.38-mile road course, marking the first time he has led laps on a street/road course and the second-time he has led laps in his IZOD IndyCar Series career (Indianapolis 500, 2012). With 24-laps remaining, the No. 83 would come in for its third and final stop from third position to take alternate tires and fuel. While in fifth-place with 13 laps to go, Kimball passed the No. 12 car to take fourth-position, where he would ultimately finish.

Kimball, on Long Beach: "I'm really looking forward to the race in Long Beach this weekend. It's always one of my favorite stops of the season--both because of the on-track competitiveness and because it's a race close to home for me. The Novo Nordisk Chip Ganassi Racing Team had a good weekend at Barber and we were fast at Long Beach, last year. I think we know what we have to do to make a bit more progress with the No. 83 NovoLog FlexPen car so we're on the podium this time around."

ROSTER
Mitch Davis - Team Manager

No. 83

Crew Chief: Mark Sampson
Composite/Body/Inside Front Tire: John Montgomery
Engineer: Brad Goldberg
Inside Front Tire: Steve Nanisnak
Assistant Engineer: Ryan Van Klompenburg
Fueler/Transport Driver: Phil Davis
Rear End Mechanic/Outside Rear: Brad Wright
Fabricator: Chris Kopp
Front End Mechanic/Air Jack: Pat Nelson
Track Help/Rear Tire Helper: Dave Padgett
Rear End Mechanic/Outside Front Tire: Josh Junge
Transport Driver/ Front hose: Mike Clark
Gear Box/Inside Rear Tire: Reid Esquivel
Spotter: Lee Orebaugh

 
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