Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing
102nd Running of the Indianapolis 500
Verizon IndyCar Series
OPENING DAY NOTES/QUOTES – May 15, 2018
RAHAL, SATO AND SERVIA TURNED MANY LAPS ON OPENING DAY FOR THE 102ND RUNNING OF THE INDY 500
1) Simon Pagenaud 225.787 mph Practice 1
14) Takuma Sato 223.305 mph Practice 2
22) Oriol Servia 223.547 mph Practice 2
27) Graham Rahal 221.671 mph Practice 2
GRAHAM RAHAL, No. 15 United Rentals Dallara/Honda/Firestone: “It was a decent day. We had some ups and downs like you always do at the Speedway. We’ve got some work to do. By no means am I overly concerned though. This morning the United Rentals Honda was the quickest on the no tow chart and that was a good sign. There was a lot to be positive about after that. This afternoon, we weren’t great but everyone will continue to work hard and we’ll be just fine. It’s a long week; hopefully we will get a lot of running in and see how it goes.”
- FAST FACTS: Will be his 11th 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 six of his nine 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 dropped from being tied for third in the standings to sixth with 142 points, only 10 out of third place.
TAKUMA SATO, No. 30 Mi-Jack / Panasonic Dallara/Honda/Firestone: “It was really nice to get back in the car on the legendary oval. We had an open test a few weeks ago and we just continued the work and learned quite a few things today. It was quite productive but having said that, the day didn’t go as well as we expected. Hopefully the weather cooperates and it stays dry for the rest of the week because I think we need to work really hard to get this car to go faster because it’s definitely a different type of car due to the aero kit. But I think it was a good, productive first day with three cars gathering data.”
- FAST FACTS: Reigning winner of the 2017 Indy 500. The 2018 race will be his ninth Indy 500 and second 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 TWO IndyCar Series wins (2013 – Long Beach street course, 2017 – Indy 500 oval) and SEVEN 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). He is 13th in series point standings with 90 points.
ORIOL SERVIA, No. 64 Scuderia Corsa Dallara/Honda/Firestone, entered by Scuderia Corsa with RLL: “It was an interesting first day. We actually had a bit more issues than expected to go through the refresher to our surprise. It was just some small little installation issues, but better to get them out of the way on the first day and have a smooth sailing for the rest of the month. Actually I finished the day really happy. We were able to put in a couple of solid runs. I didn’t get to run much in traffic but the No. 64 Scuderia Corsa has decent speed in each zone and I cannot wait to start running in traffic with my teammates tomorrow. It looks like the weather will let us do the laps that we need so I can’t wait!”
- FAST FACTS: Will be his 203rd Indy car start… The 2018 Indy 500 will be Servia’s 10th in the famed race and fifth with RLL. His best finish overall is fourth in 2012 with Dreyer & Reinbold and best start is third in 2011 with Newman/Haas Racing. In the 2009 Indianapolis 500 with RLL, Servia was in ninth place halfway through the race when a mechanical failure led to his retirement in 26th place. In 2014, he competed for the team in Long Beach, at Barber Motorsports Park and two events at Indianapolis Motor Speedway where he led seven laps in the road course race but finished 12th, qualified 18th for the Indy 500 and finished 11th. In 2015, Servia retired in 29th place from the Indy 500 with RLL after Ed Carpenter attempted an inside pass while Servia was 15th and took both drivers out of the race after 112 of 200 laps… A native of Pals, Spain, Servia has made 202 starts in CART, Champ Car and the IndyCar Series since his rookie season in 2000. His Indy car highlights include one win (Montreal 2005) and one pole (Surfers Paradise, Australia 2005) as well as a total of 19 top-three, 51 top-five and 101 top-10 finishes.
NEXT UP: Practice will take place from 11-6 p.m. ET tomorrow.