Notes & Quotes: Iowa Corn 300
Takuma Sato: No. 14 ABC Supply Honda
Jack Hawksworth: No. 41 ABC Supply Honda
Takuma Sato On:
Iowa Speedway: “Iowa Speedway is small and short but I like it a lot. I think it’s a good contrast from some of super speedways but it’s suited for IndyCar. It’s a different style but it’s so much fun with such close racing with good driver’s actions. I mean we drive really hard with lots of throttle control. I have great memories of my earlier visits but I do have a lack of good fortune there. Hopefully we can change that this weekend.”
Increased G-forces with new aero package: “It could be a new record this year, will see. I remember it pulled 6Gs on my pole lap which are enormous G-forces but I really did enjoy the laps. We haven’t had a big lap since there was some reduction of downforce in recent years but this year with the new aero package, it should be a lot faster.”
Increased physicality of the car at this track: “Well, you just have to be prepared, and not only for this track because the whole season has been like that. But it is true that Iowa is definitely the most physically demanding oval and it will be even tougher this year.”
What he does in Iowa for fun: “Oops, I already answered that one – see above!”
Jack Hawksworth On:
Iowa Speedway: “I was impressed with the banking and just how short the track is. The length of the circuit really makes the cars look and feel incredibly quick! It’s very easy to go a lap down and catching a yellow at the wrong moment can cost you big.”
Racing at Iowa Speedway: “I enjoyed it in Mazda and Indy Lights, I had a couple of strong runs there and enjoyed the bull ring style of racing. I struggled here last year though so hopefully this year we are a little stronger!”
New aero package at Iowa: “The tire degradation should be a little better and it’s possible we might be able to run side by side a little easier. It may open up some different lines and lanes during the race so the racing could be closer.”
Using Milwaukee race as test session: “We were able to confirm a few things we learned in practice and understand the car a little better. Hopefully we can use some of that information to kick off this weekend in a better place.”
Last year’s Iowa race: “This race was a bit of a disaster for us last year. We had no practice time due to the weather and then struggled to find a happy balance in the race. We weren’t competitive and wound up finishing a few laps down.”
This season’s performance: Takuma Sato’s best performance to date has come at Detroit with his best start of fourth in Race 1 and his best finish of second in Race 2. It was his first podium finish since his runner-up finish in Brazil in 2103. For Jack Hawksworth this year, his best finish of seventh came in both races in Detroit, while his best start of eighth came in New Orleans. Hawksworth has been plagued by red flags (for others) during his qualifying sessions this year. The Iowa Corn 300 will be Sato’s 99th IndyCar race and Hawksworth’s 30th race.
Past Performance at Iowa Speedway: In five races at Iowa, Sato’s best start was from the pole in 2011 with KV Racing and his best finish was 12th in 2012 with Rahal Letterman Lanigan. In his rookie season, Hawksworth started 20th and finished 15th at Iowa. In eight appearances, the Foyt team’s best start (7th) came in 2013 with Sato but a problem with the engine forced them out after 162 laps. The team’s best finish (5th) came with Darren Manning in 2007.
ABC Supply celebrates its 10th anniversary of AJ Foyt Racing sponsorship: ABC Supply began sponsoring the AJ Foyt Racing team with the 2005 Indianapolis 500. The company has leveraged its involvement by entertaining nearly 70,000 associates and customers over the past 10 racing seasons. This weekend the company will entertain 450 guests.
ABC Supply national account Blackstone Roofing, based in Winterset, Iowa will be featured on the engine cover of the No. 14 ABC Supply Honda. Guests will receive the VIP treatment this weekend along with a Meet and Greet with Takuma Sato.
ABC Supply roofing customer, Craftsmen Exteriors, LLC, located in Burnsville, Minn., won the ‘Your Name Here’ contest for this weekend. The company name will be atop the sidepods of the No. 41 ABC Supply Honda. Guests will receive the VIP treatment plus a Meet and Greet with Jack Hawksworth.
Headquartered in Beloit, Wis., ABC Supply was founded by Ken and Diane Hendricks in 1982. The company has more than 490 branches in 49 states and is dedicated exclusively to serving professional contractors. ABC Supply has distinguished itself by following a simple guiding principle – take care of contractors better than any other distributor. It remains an “employee-first” company that treats its associates with respect and gives them the tools they need to succeed. As an eight-time winner of the Gallup Great Workplace Award, which recognizes the best-performing workforces in the world, ABC Supply is one of only three companies in the world to have earned this honor every year since its inception in 2007. More information is available at www.abcsupply.com.
The Iowa Corn 300 will be televised live on NBC Sports Network Saturday, July 18th starting at 8:00pm ET.
For more information on the ABC Supply/AJ Foyt Racing program, please check our web site: www.foytracing.com. To follow us on Twitter: @AJFoytRacing, @TakumaSatoRacer, @JackHawk41, @LarryFoyt14. On Facebook, we have the AJ Foyt Racing fan page.