Harvest GP – Race 2 Notes/Quotes

Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing

Harvest GP – Indianapolis Motor Speedway
RACE 2 NOTES/QUOTES – October 3, 2020


GRAHAM RAHAL, No. 15 United Rentals Dallara/Honda/Firestone: “Another seventh-place finish. I’m disappointed from the standpoint that I thought yesterday the United Rentals car had good pace but today we struggled a little. I think a lot of guys struggled more today just for whatever reason it was kind of a handful out there. We got two seventh-place finishes, we’re still sixth in the points and 22 behind Pato so we’ve got to have a good weekend in St. Pete, and we can get into the top-five.  But we were just missing it a little bit this weekend. We’ll work hard and try to figure it out and come back stronger. In the end it was a good weekend for Turns for Troops and Soldier Strong with our United Rentals program. We raised a lot of money to help our veterans.”

  • FAST FACTS: Rahal qualified 10th for the 75-lap race and gained four spots on the opening lap to run sixth. He started on primary Firestone tires and Santino Ferrucci utilized his quicker red tires to regain a spot. Rahal ran second for two laps but knew he wouldn’t be able to conserve fuel and hold off hard charging run from Harvey or Newgarden and ran ninth on Lap 10 until the pit cycle started. After his first of two stops, he settled into seventh place and held the position through his second stop and to the checkered flag … The 2020 Harvest GP doubleheader will be Rahal’s eighth and ninth Indy car races on the road course at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. In July, he earned his top start of fourth place here and matched his best finish of second place (2015, 2020) in seven starts but looked likely to win.  In seven events, he has six top-10 finishes of second (2015, 2020), fourth (2016), sixth (2017), seventh (2019) and ninth (2018). 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 maintained his sixth-place rank in NTT INDYCAR SERIES point standings with 354 and is only -22 behind fifth place Pato O’Ward (376).

TAKUMA SATO, No. 30 Keihin Dallara/Honda/Firestone: “It was a hard race today. Once again there were no yellows, so it was very difficult to make up positions and strategy-wise it was almost fixed.  We fought, almost all the race long and in the end, we gained some positions. One guy pushed me off to the grass which was a shame because we lost a few positions but, in the end, we finished 14th after a hard battle which was a little frustrating but at least we raced hard today.”

  • FAST FACTS: Sato started 17th and claimed two spots at the start but Hinchcliffe regained his spot on Lap 2. He gained a spot when Hunter-Reay had to pit after contact and ran ahead of Marcus Ericsson and had to fend off advances.  He passed VeeKay for 14th on Lap 17 and made his first of two stops on Lap 25. Hunter-Reay made his second stop and Sato moved into 15th, ahead of Ericsson again. After the two utilized a good portion of their Push-to-pass, Ericsson moved ahead on Lap 39. Sato pit from 16th on Lap 50 and almost got out ahead of Ericsson, who also stopped.  After the round of stops, he settled into 15th place behind Ericsson but passed him on Lap 73 and took the checkered flag in 14th place.… The 2020 Harvest GP will be Takuma’s eighth and ninth races here.  His best start is 11th in 2018 and 2019 with RLL and his best finish is ninth in 2017 with Andretti Autosport… Has SIX INDYCAR SERIES wins (2013 – Long Beach street course, 2017 – Indy 500 oval, 2018 – Portland road, 2019 – Barber road, St. Louis short oval, 2020 – Indianapolis 500) and NINE 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 maintained his seventh-place rank in series point standings with a total of 328 and is -26 behind sixth place Rahal.

NEXT UP:  The Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg INDYCAR SERIES season-finale will take place October 24-25.