#45: Santino Ferrucci, Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing Honda

Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing105th Running of the Indianapolis 500
NTT INDYCAR SERIES
PRACTICE DAY NOTES/QUOTES – May 20, 2021                              

FERRUCCI WAS EVALUATED AND RELEASED FROM IU HEALTH METHODIST HOSPITAL FOLLOWING CONTACT; RAHAL AND SATO COMPLETE MORE LAPS IN PRACTICE AT IMS

1)         Tony Kanaan               225.341 mph   
3)         Santino Ferrucci          224.922 mph
9)         Takuma Sato               224.232 mph   
26)       Graham Rahal             221.749 mph

GRAHAM RAHAL, No. 15 United Rentals Dallara/Honda/Firestone: “I’d say overall it was a pretty solid day. We were able to work through a lot, work on our qualifying setup a little bit. And in the end we got to do some race running.  Our car was very good in the race runs so we’re excited about the opportunity. We got a pretty good horse in this thing so tomorrow will be interesting. The boost gets turned up and we will see how the qualifying speeds are and the performance. We will see where we stack up compared to others and go from there. But we’re excited. We’re going to try to get the United Rentals Honda in victory lane. We were close last year. Hopefully we get it done this time. I’m excited for what’s ahead.”

  • FAST FACTS: Will be his 14th 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 and RLL in 2020. 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 is currently fifth in series standings with 137 points, only 39 out of first place.

TAKUMA SATO, No. 30 Panasonic / PeopleReady Dallara/Honda/Firestone: “It was another very productive day for us. We learned a lot, both in qualifying simulations as well as race simulation. We ran a lot of group runs and in traffic runs. It is always challenging, never easy but it was very productive. So tomorrow we go to Fast Friday with high boost so I’m quite excited to go fast and concentrate on qualifying day of course. So far we have had very, very good days in practice and everything is according to plan. Let’s keep on working and hopefully we have a strong day in qualifications.”

  • FAST FACTS: Sato is the only active two-time Indy 500 Champion.  The 2021 race will be his 12th Indy 500 and fourth 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. He finished third for RLL in 2019 and was a contender in the final laps… Has SIX INDYCAR SERIES wins (2013 – Long Beach street course, 2017 – Indy 500 oval, 2018 – Portland road, 2019 – Barber road, Gateway oval; 2020 Indy 500 ) and 10 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 road, Texas oval; 2020 St. Louis – Race 2).  He is 12th in series standings with 98 points.

SANTINO FERRUCCI, No. 45 Hy-Vee Dallara/Honda/Firestone: “It was your typical Turn 2 situation where the car gets a gust of wind and goes without warning. I’m back at the Speedway, all checked out from medical. I go through the final physical test tomorrow to see if I can get back in the car and drive. I’m a little sore but happy to be here at IMS. The guys are working overly hard to make sure our Hy-Vee Honda is back on track and its going to be really quick.”

  • FAST FACTS: At 4:14 p.m., and after setting the second fastest time at the time, Ferrucci’s No. 45 entry did a quarter-spin to the left in Turn 2 and made hard rear contact with the SAFER Barrier in Turn 2 before stopping on the back straightaway. The rear of the car suffered heavy damage. He climbed from his car with assistance from the AMR INDYCAR Safety Team and was evaluated onsite before being transported to IU Health Methodist Hospital in Indianapolis for further evaluation on his left leg. He was evaluated and released from IU Health Methodist Hospital later. He will be evaluated again in the morning by Dr. Billows but is expected to be cleared to drive. He has competed in two Indy 500’s with his best finish of fourth in the 2020 Indy 500 and his seventh-place finish in the 2019 Indy 500 earned him Rookie of the Year. 

NEXT UP: Practice will take place from 12-6 p.m. ET tomorrow. Get a behind-the-scenes look at preparations for the 105th Indianapolis 500 via the Digital Ally Garage Camera on www.rahal.com.  Qualifying for the Indy 500 will take place Saturday and Sunday, May 22-23.