Archives for Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing PR

Rahal Qualified Sixth for Saturday Night’s Firestone 600 at Texas Motor Speedway

POLE: Will Power 2-lap avg. speed of 218.519 mph (L1: 23.9500, L2: 23.9910)
6th: Graham Rahal 2-lap avg. speed of 217.438 mph (L1: 24.0610, L2: 24.1182)

GRAHAM RAHAL, No. 15 Rahal Letterman Lanigan Dallara/Honda/Firestone: “Starting up towards the front with these boys is exactly where we need to be. Obviously points are a big focus for us right now. Tomorrow is going to be a tough race; everybody is going to have to manage their tires as well as they can. I feel like our race car is pretty good and I feel like track position is going to be pretty important here too. We’ll just keep working hard and keep our heads down and it will be just fine. For qualifying, the car was pretty loose. We ran more downforce and more drag than some people. Here it is a fine balance; it’s not just about taking off downforce and drag anymore. The car is a fine line about when you slid too much and we were pretty loose but that’s the way it goes. I’m just happy to have this car up there. I’m proud of this team. These guys have very worked hard. Obviously I’m a part of that but I really give all the credit to them because it’s a different organization and I’m very proud of them. This weekend is a big test for us. We weren’t very happy here last year and we’re just working as hard as we can to put ourselves in a good spot for the race.”

FAST FACTS: Will be his seventh event here and eighth race (two in 2011). He qualified 21st in 2014 and finished 12th. He qualified 19th in 2013 and started 17th after two cars ahead served 10-grid penalties for unapproved engine changes. He struggled with the handling of his race car and finished 21st. He set the fastest single lap in qualifying in 2012 but the grid is set based on a two-lap average and he qualified third in 2012. In the race, he led 27 laps but a slight brush of the wall with two laps to go forced him to settle for second place with Service Central Chip Ganassi Racing (SCCGR). He qualified 20th for the first of two heat races in 2011 and finished ninth with SCCGR. He drew the fourth starting spot for Race 2 in 2011 and finished 30th. He did not compete in Texas in 2010 during his partial season of competition. He qualified 12th with Newman/Haas/Lanigan Racing (NHLR) in 2009 but retired in 22nd place after contact. In 2008, he qualified 18th and finished 11th with NHLR… He is ranked fifth in series standings with a total of 246. He trails fourth place Helio Castroneves by four (250), third place Scott Dixon by six (252) and second place Will Power by 48 (294) after Round 8 of 16.

RLL AT TEXAS MOTOR SPEEDWAY: The Firestone 600 will mark the 13th for Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing (RLL) at the 1.5-mile, high-banked Texas Motor Speedway oval. The team’s highest start of pole with Scott Sharp came in 2007 and highest finish of second came in 2005 with Vitor Meira. The team earned another front row start in 2004 when Buddy Rice qualified second. Prior to the 2015 event, the team prepared a total of 18 entries for drivers such as Kenny Brack (2003 x2), Buddy Rice (2004 x2; 2005, 2006), Vitor Meira (2004 x2; 2005), Danica Patrick (2005, 2006), Jeff Simmons (2007), Ryan Hunter-Reay (2008), Jay Howard (2011, Schmidt/RLL), Takuma Sato (2012) Graham Rahal (2013-2014) and James Jakes (2013). The team has earned three top-five finishes and six top-10’s at the track. The No. 15 Rahal Letterman Lanigan entry for Graham Rahal will bring that total to 19 in 2015.

NEXT UP: There will be a 30-minute practice session from 6:45-7:15 p.m. CT tonight and the Firestone 600 will take the Green Flag at 7:50 p.m. CT Saturday. Live coverage will begin at 8 p.m. ET on NBCSN.

FIGHTSMA TO RETURN AS ASSOCIATE SPONSOR OF RAHAL LETTERMAN LANIGAN RACING’S INDY CAR ENTRY AT TORONTO AND MID-OHIO

FIGHTSMA TO RETURN AS ASSOCIATE SPONSOR OF RAHAL LETTERMAN LANIGAN RACING’S INDY CAR ENTRY AT TORONTO AND MID-OHIO

BROWNSBURG, Ind. (June 4, 2015) – Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing (RLL) announced today that it will again partner with FightSMA to build awareness of Spinal Muscular Atrophy. FightSMA will be an associatesponsor the team’s No. 15 entry driven by Graham Rahal at the Honda Indy Toronto on June 14 and the Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio on August 2.  Spinal muscular atrophy (SMA) is the most common genetic cause of infant death, but has been identified as the closest of all neurological disease to finding treatment or a cure. The organization was an associate sponsor of the team at Toronto and Houston last season.

“It is truly an honor to represent FightSMA and join in the fight to end this terrible disease,” said Graham Rahal, who finished on the podium three of the past five Verizon IndyCar Series races and is ranked fourth in series point standings.  “Our team is motivated to bring home a win in Toronto and at my home race at Mid-Ohio to raise global awareness of Spinal Muscular Atrophy.”

“FightSMA is thrilled to be involved with the Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing team for the second year in a row,” said FightSMA Canada president, Tracy Lacey. “As spinal muscular atrophy is a disease that is so close to the finish line in terms of finding a cure, partnering up with Graham Rahal is a natural fit for us.”

 

Rahal Heads to Texas for the Firestone 600 After Three Podium Finishes in the Past Five Races

Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing
Firestone 600 – Texas Motor Speedway
Pre-Race Notes
Round 9 of 16 in the 2015 Verizon IndyCar Series

NEWS & NOTES:

DATE: June 5-6, 2015
QUALIFYING BROADCAST: Tape delayed on NBCSN on Friday, June 5 at 6 p.m. ET and live on www.indycar.com (timing & scoring w/radio commentary)
RACE BROADCAST: Live on Saturday, June 6 at 8 p.m. ET on NBCSN
RADIO BROADCAST: The race will air on the Advance Auto Parts INDYCAR Radio Network, Sirius 212, XM 209 and www.indycar.com
TRACK LAYOUT: 1.5-mile oval
RACE LENGTH: 248 laps / 360.84 miles
2014 WINNER: Ed Carpenter
2014 POLESITTER: Will Power (two-lap average speed of 218.896 mph)

RAHAL’S BEST
OVAL START/FINISH: Pole (Kansas 2009) / 2nd (Texas 2012 and Milwaukee 2011)
RAHAL’S BEST TMS
START/FINISH: 3rd in 2012 / 2nd in 2012

RLL’S TOP START/
FINISH AT TMS: 1st by Scott Sharp 2007 / 2nd by Vitor Meira 2005

NEWS & NOTES:

1 POLE, 1 PODIUM, 2 FRONT ROW STARTS IN 12 EVENTS AT TMS FOR RLL RACING
The 2015 Firestone 600 will mark the 13th event for Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing (RLL) at the 1.5-mile, high-banked Texas Motor Speedway oval. The team’s highest start of pole with Scott Sharp came in 2007 and highest finish of second came in 2005 with Vitor Meira. The team earned another front row start in 2004 when Buddy Rice qualified second. Overall the team has earned three top-five finishes and six top-10’s at the track.

Prior to the 2015 event, the team prepared a total of 18 entries for drivers such as Kenny Brack (2003 x2), Buddy Rice (2004 x2; 2005, 2006), Vitor Meira (2004 x2; 2005), Danica Patrick (2005, 2006), Jeff Simmons (2007), Ryan Hunter-Reay (2008), Jay Howard (2011, Schmidt/RLL) and Takuma Sato (2012), James Jakes (2013) and Graham Rahal (2013-2014). The No. 15 entry for Graham Rahal will bring that total to 19 in 2015.

FOURTH PLACE IN THE POINT STANDINGS AT THE MIDSEASON MARK
Rahal has run in the top five in six of eight races this season with the exception of Long Beach and Detroit Race 1, and has led the race five times for a total of 26 laps. A penalty in St. Pete for avoidable contact while trying to pass a damaged race car, a shortened race due to weather in NOLA and getting collected after contact between three other cars on Lap 6 of 70 in Detroit Race 1 potentially limited the amount of points he collected in those events but he is currently ranked fourth in series standings with a total of 246. He trails third place Scott Dixon by six (252) and second place Will Power by 48 (294) after Round 8 of 16.

RAHAL ON THE AERO KIT CONFIGURATION AND EXPECTATIONS FOR TEXAS MOTOR SPEEDWAY RACE
“In recent years, the racing has been difficult because we removed downforce and made the racing harder and harder. At this point, it’s hard to say what it’s going to be like this year but I’m sure we will put on a good race. We are going back to using the old style mainplane so I don’t know that anybody has a real idea of where the car is going to be, performance-wise just yet. At Indy the aero kit was very good but there are a couple of different things that will change for Texas as far as the aero kit goes. The pods will be blocked off and the rear mainplane goes back to the one we ran last year so there are a few things that are different. We’re just going to have to see how it all plays out. But we always put on a good race and a good show so I’m sure it will be the same.”

RAHAL ON THE ALWAYS-EXCITING RACE AT TEXAS MOTOR SPEEDWAY
“The first things I think about when I think about the race at TMS are close racing and craziness. It’s always close and always hard fought. It feels good to get that race under your belt.”

84TH PODIUM FOR RLL’S INDY CAR PROGRAM AT DETROIT
Graham Rahal brought the team its 84th Indy car podium with his third place finish in Dual 2 in Detroit Sunday. It was the third podium finish in the past five races for the team and third of the past four road/street course races. He finished second at Barber Motorsports Park, second in the Indy GP, fifth in the Indy 500, 23rd in Detroit Race 1 and third in Detroit Race 2. To date the Indy car team has earned 20 wins, 37 second-place finishes and 27 third-place finishes.

GRAHAM AT TMS INCLUDING HIS NEAR-WIN IN 2012
The 2015 race will mark Graham Rahal’s seventh event here. In 2014, he qualified 21st and finished 12th. In 2013 he qualified 19th and finished 21st after struggling with the handling of his race car. He qualified third in 2012, led 27 laps and looked close to earning his second series victory but a slight brush of the wall with two laps to go forced him to settle for second place with Service Central Chip Ganassi Racing (SCCGR). He qualified 20th for the first of two heat races in 2011 and finished ninth with SCCGR. He drew the fourth starting spot for Race 2 in 2011 and finished 30th. He did not compete in Texas in 2010 during his partial season of competition. He qualified 12th with Newman/Haas/Lanigan Racing (NHLR) in 2009 but retired in 22nd place after contact. In 2008, he qualified 18th and finished 11th with NHLR.

RACE NOTES/QUOTES for DUAL 2 – May 31, 2015

Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing
Chevrolet Dual in Detroit Presented by Quicken Loans
Verizon IndyCar Series
RACE NOTES/QUOTES for DUAL 2 – May 31, 2015

RAHAL EARNED HIS THIRD PODIUM FINISH IN PAST FIVE RACES WITH THIRD PLACE IN THE WET CHEVROLET DUAL IN DETROIT RACE 2; MOVED TO FOURTH IN SERIES STANDINGS

GRAHAM RAHAL, No. 15 Steak ‘n Shake Dallara/Honda/Firestone: “Obviously we would like to be winning but that’s three podiums in the last four road and street course races, and three in the past five overall for the Steak ‘n Shake team so I’m pretty proud of where we are at. I want to thank Honda for all the hard work they are putting in. The fuel mileage was really good there at the end. I would have like to have seen the race run full distance because I heard Bourdais was tight on fuel and we were definitely good. (On pass of Montoya:) Bourdais was doing these restarts where he would accelerate and then brake-check everybody. I don’t know how there wasn’t contact. Therefore everybody ahead of me just checked up and I heard green and I just went around him (Montoya). It’s great to move up to fourth in points and close the gap on all the guys in front of us which is what we came here to do. Yesterday, as frustrating as it was, this definitely makes it better. We don’t necessarily always have the fastest car but if we can get to the end and have good finishes, we can be right there.”
FAST FACTS: Was his eighth race here. Standing water cancelled qualifying and the grid was set by entrant points so Rahal started fifth. He lost positions to Newgarden, Munoz and Bourdais in the opening laps but regained seventh when Munoz had mechanical problems. After the first cycle of stops concluded he regained seventh place and moved to sixth when Power pit to change his steering wheel. He came out eight from his second stop as those who took over the top three didn’t pit. On a restart, he lost a position to Castroneves but later gained it back by passing Newgarden when Castroneves did. He moved to sixth once Hunter-Reay made his out-of-sequence stop. Sato attempted a pass on Lap 48 but Rahal was able to stay ahead. Dixon, who was on rain tires while the majority of the field were on slicks, held up a pack of cars until Rahal and others were able to pass him. He moved into fourth when Power also pit. He lost traction on the exit of Turn 11 and made his one move to the outside in front of Sato but the series deemed it blocking and he had to give the position back during the caution for Dixon and Kimball. On the restart, he passed Montoya for third. Fuel was tight for race leader Bourdais and a 10 minute red flag to clear debris from contact between teammates Power and Castroneves deemed the race a timed event once it resumed. Once it was restarted, Rahal closed on Sato but was unable to pass and finished third to Sato and Bourdais who was able to stretch his fuel in the shortened race and win. On Saturday, he started 13th but was in 15th place on a wet track on a Lap 6 restart. The field entered Turn 1 and Stefano Coletti attempted a pass by going three-wide but contact with James Jakes pushed Jakes into Tony Kanaan who bounced off the tires and into Rahal’s path. He sustained damage to the right side front suspension which the team was unable to repair in the pits and he retired in 23rd place… In 2014 he qualified 9th for Dual 1 in Detroit, led 10 laps, challenged for the win and finished second. He started 14th in Dual 2 after the team elected to qualify on primary tires to save a set of red alternate tires for the race – a strategy that didn’t pay off. On the opening lap, Will Power, who was later penalized with a drive through penalty for avoidable contact, squeezed Josef Newgarden in Turn 4 and the two made contact. Rahal was behind the two and had nowhere to go and hit Newgarden before Justin Wilson ran into the rear of the No. 15 entry which resulted in gear problems. By the time the team replaced the front nose and repaired the gear sensor, he returned to the track seven laps down. He ultimately retired in 21st place after he brushed the wall and damaged his suspension after completing 43 of 70 laps… He qualified 14th for Dual 1 in Detroit in 2013 but started 23rd due to an unapproved engine change at Indy. He gained three spots on the opening lap and another two on the first restart on Lap 4. The team elected for an alternate strategy and the timing of the caution flags worked in the team’s favor and Rahal was able to climb 14 spots to finish ninth. He qualified 15th for Dual 2 in Detroit and finished ninth… In 2012, he qualified seventh with Service Central Chip Ganassi Racing but had a 10-grid penalty for an unapproved engine change and started 17th. He was eighth when he made his final stop on Lap 45/60 but during the red flag stop to repair the track, a clutch problem surfaced and he was unable to continue and retired in 19th place. In 2008 he drove for Newman/Haas/ Lanigan Racing and progressed to the Firestone Fast Six in qualifying for the first time in his series career and qualified sixth. The team chose the same pit strategy as then race leader Dixon which almost worked but a late race fourth caution botched the plan and he had to stop for a splash of fuel with three laps to go and dropped to 13th… He is currently ranked fourth in series point standings with a total of 246. He trails third place Scott Dixon by six (252) and second place Will Power by 48 (294) after Round 8 of 16.

RAHAL LETTERMAN LANIGAN RACING AT DETROIT … This was RLL’s 16th year to compete at the Raceway at Belle Isle Park and the team’s 18th and 19th races. It was the team’s fifth podium here (2nd: G. Rahal 2014, Jakes 2013 & Max Papis 2000; 3rd: G. Rahal – 2015),

NEXT UP: The series heads to Texas Motor Speedway for their sixth straight weekend of action for the Firestone 600 on Saturday, June 6.

Lap Six Contact Between Coletti, Jakes and Kanaan Collected Rahal Who Retired in 23rd Place

Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing
Chevrolet Dual in Detroit Presented by Quicken Loans
Verizon IndyCar Series
RACE NOTES/QUOTES for DUAL 1 – May 30, 2015

LAP SIX CONTACT BETWEEN COLETTI, JAKES AND KANAAN COLLECTED RAHAL WHO RETIRED IN 23RD PLACE IN A WET RACE

GRAHAM RAHAL, No. 15 Steak ‘n Shake Dallara/Honda/Firestone: “It’s unfortunate because the car was pretty good in the wet. When Kanaan hit the tire wall he just bounced right out in front of me and there was no where I could go. That’s just the way these things go. It’s unfortunate but we’ve had a great season so far and the Steak ‘n Shake team will be back strong tomorrow.”

FAST FACTS: Was his seventh race here. He started 13th but was in 15th place on a wet track on a Lap 6 restart. The field entered Turn 1 and Stefano Coletti attempted a pass by going three-wide but contact with James Jakes pushed Jakes into Tony Kanaan who bounced off the tires and into Rahal’s path. He sustained damage to the right side front suspension which the team was unable to repair in the pits and he retired in 23rd place… In 2014 he qualified 9th for Dual 1 in Detroit, led 10 laps, challenged for the win and finished second. He started 14th in Dual 2 after the team elected to qualify on primary tires to save a set of red alternate tires for the race – a strategy that didn’t pay off. On the opening lap, Will Power, who was later penalized with a drive through penalty for avoidable contact, squeezed Josef Newgarden in Turn 4 and the two made contact. Rahal was behind the two and had nowhere to go and hit Newgarden before Justin Wilson ran into the rear of the No. 15 entry which resulted in gear problems. By the time the team replaced the front nose and repaired the gear sensor, he returned to the track seven laps down. He ultimately retired in 21st place after he brushed the wall and damaged his suspension after completing 43 of 70 laps… He qualified 14th for Dual 1 in Detroit in 2013 but started 23rd due to an unapproved engine change at Indy. He gained three spots on the opening lap and another two on the first restart on Lap 4. The team elected for an alternate strategy and the timing of the caution flags worked in the team’s favor and Rahal was able to climb 14 spots to finish ninth. He qualified 15th for Dual 2 in Detroit and finished ninth… In 2012, he qualified seventh with Service Central Chip Ganassi Racing but had a 10-grid penalty for an unapproved engine change and started 17th. He was eighth when he made his final stop on Lap 45/60 but during the red flag stop to repair the track, a clutch problem surfaced and he was unable to continue and retired in 19th place. In 2008 he drove for Newman/Haas/ Lanigan Racing and progressed to the Firestone Fast Six in qualifying for the first time in his series career and qualified sixth. The team chose the same pit strategy as then race leader Dixon which almost worked but a late race fourth caution botched the plan and he had to stop for a splash of fuel with three laps to go and dropped to 13th… He is currently ranked fifth in series point standings with a total of 211. He trails fourth place Helio Castroneves by 23 points (234), third place Scott Dixon by 30 (241) and second place Will Power by 70 (281) after Round 7 of 16.

RAHAL LETTERMAN LANIGAN RACING AT DETROIT … This will be RLL’s 16th year to compete at the Raceway at Belle Isle Park and the team’s 18th and 19th races. The team’s highest start of second place came in the inaugural running on Belle Isle in 1992 by Bobby Rahal and in 2013 by James Jakes in Dual 2. Bobby Rahal brought the team its highest finish with a win in 1992, Jakes added a third podium for the team in 2013 with his second place finish and Graham Rahal added a fourth with his second place finish in Dual 1 last year. In total, the team has earned four podiums (G. Rahal 2014, Jakes 2013 & Max Papis 2000 – 2nd), five top-five finishes and 13 top-10’s here (chart available). Prior to 2015, the team prepared a total of 24 entries for drivers such as Bobby Rahal (1992-1998), Mike Groff (1993-94), Raul Boesel (1995), Bryan Herta (1996-99), Max Papis (1999-2001), Kenny Brack (2000-01), Ryan Hunter-Reay (2007-08) Takuma Sato (2012), Graham Rahal (2013-2014) and James Jakes (2013).

NEXT UP: Qualifying for Dual 2 will take place tomorrow from 11:25-11:55 a.m. ET and the 70 lap Dual 2 will take the Green Flag at 3:50 PM. Timing and Scoring information and live streaming video is available for all sessions from www.indycar.com and includes live commentary by the INDYCAR Radio Network. Dual 2 of the Chevrolet Dual in Detroit, Dual 2 will be televised live on ABC beginning at 3:30 PM ET Sunday, May 31.

RAHAL QUALIFIED 13TH FOR DUAL 1 OF THE CHEVROLET DUAL IN DETROIT

Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing
Chevrolet Dual in Detroit Presented by Quicken Loans
Verizon IndyCar Series
QUALIFYING NOTES/QUOTES – May 29, 2015

RAHAL QUALIFIED 13TH FOR DUAL 1 OF THE CHEVROLET DUAL IN DETROIT

1) Will Power 1:16.0941 / 111.178 mph (Group 1, Round 3)
13) Graham Rahal 1:18.2239 / 108.151 mph (Group 1, Round 1)

GRAHAM RAHAL, No. 15 Steak ‘n Shake Dallara/Honda/Firestone: “I’m pretty disappointed with qualifying. The team has been doing such a great job and we’ve been so competitive everywhere and when we got on track this morning, the car just felt like it was off and that carried through to qualifying. We’re going to have to make some changes for the morning practice but hopefully we can make the right changes, head in the right direction and have a good day tomorrow. Starting 13th isn’t the worst thing we’ve ever done but it’s certainly not the best. We’ve got a lot of work ahead of us. Hopefully we can get the Steak ‘n Shake car up there. It would be slippery for sure in the rain here but it’s the same for everybody. I would feel pretty good about it if it rained. I feel like I could make up some positions but we’re just going to have to see what tomorrow brings.”

FAST FACTS: Will be his seventh and eighth races here. In 2014 he qualified 9th for Dual 1 in Detroit, led 10 laps, challenged for the win and finished second. He started 14th in Dual 2 after the team elected to qualify on primary tires to save a set of red alternate tires for the race – a strategy that didn’t pay off. On the opening lap, Will Power, who was later penalized with a drive through penalty for avoidable contact, squeezed Josef Newgarden in Turn 4 and the two made contact. Rahal was behind the two and had nowhere to go and hit Newgarden before Justin Wilson ran into the rear of the No. 15 entry which resulted in gear problems. By the time the team replaced the front nose and repaired the gear sensor, he returned to the track seven laps down. He ultimately retired in 21st place after he brushed the wall and damaged his suspension after completing 43 of 70 laps… He qualified 14th for Dual 1 in Detroit in 2013 but started 23rd due to an unapproved engine change at Indy. He gained three spots on the opening lap and another two on the first restart on Lap 4. The team elected for an alternate strategy and the timing of the caution flags worked in the team’s favor and Rahal was able to climb 14 spots to finish ninth. He qualified 15th for Dual 2 in Detroit and finished ninth… In 2012, he qualified seventh with Service Central Chip Ganassi Racing but had a 10-grid penalty for an unapproved engine change and started 17th. He was eighth when he made his final stop on Lap 45/60 but during the red flag stop to repair the track, a clutch problem surfaced and he was unable to continue and retired in 19th place. In 2008 he drove for Newman/Haas/Lanigan Racing and progressed to the Firestone Fast Six in qualifying for the first time in his series career and qualified sixth. The team chose the same pit strategy as then race leader Dixon which almost worked but a late race fourth caution botched the plan and he had to stop for a splash of fuel with three laps to go and dropped to 13th… He is currently ranked fifth in series standings with a total of 204. He trails fourth place Helio Castroneves by two points (206), third place Scott Dixon by seven (211) and second place Will Power by 43 (247) after Round 6 of 16.

RAHAL LETTERMAN LANIGAN RACING AT DETROIT … This will be RLL’s 16th year to compete at the Raceway at Belle Isle Park and the team’s 18th and 19th races. The team’s highest start of second place came in the inaugural running on Belle Isle in 1992 by Bobby Rahal and in 2013 by James Jakes in Dual 2. Bobby Rahal brought the team its highest finish with a win in 1992, Jakes added a third podium for the team in 2013 with his second place finish and Graham Rahal added a fourth with his second place finish in Dual 1 last year. In total, the team has earned four podiums (G. Rahal 2014, Jakes 2013 & Max Papis 2000 – 2nd), five top-five finishes and 13 top-10’s here (chart available). Prior to 2015, the team prepared a total of 24 entries for drivers such as Bobby Rahal (1992-1998), Mike Groff (1993-94), Raul Boesel (1995), Bryan Herta (1996-99), Max Papis (1999-2001), Kenny Brack (2000-01), Ryan Hunter-Reay (2007-08) Takuma Sato (2012), Graham Rahal (2013-2014) and James Jakes (2013). The No. 15 Steak ‘n Shake entry for Graham Rahal will bring that total to 25 in 2015.

NEXT UP: Practice 2 will take place tomorrow from 8:55-9:25 a.m. ET and the 70 lap Dual 1 will take the Green Flag at 3:50 PM. Timing and Scoring information and live streaming video is available for all sessions from www.indycar.com and includes live commentary by the INDYCAR Radio Network. The Chevrolet Dual in Detroit, Dual 1 will be televised live on ABC beginning at 3:30 PM ET Saturday, May 30.

Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing Pre-Race Notes Chevrolet Dual in Detroit

Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing Pre-Race Notes Chevrolet Dual in Detroit – Raceway at Belle Isle Park
Round 7 and 8 of 16 in the 2015 Verizon IndyCar Series
 

DATE:                                     May 29 – May 31, 2015
QUALIFYING BROADCAST:                None; LIVE on www.indycar.com (timing & scoring with audio commentary)
RACE BROADCAST:              Live on Saturday, May 30 and Sunday, May 31 – both at 3:30 p.m.  ET on ABC
RADIO BROADCAST:            The race will air on the Advance Auto Parts INDYCAR Radio Network, Sirius 212, XM 209 andwww.indycar.com
TRACK LAYOUT:                   2.35-mile, 14-turn temporary street course
RACE LENGTH:                      70 laps / 164.5 miles (each race)
2015 WINNER(S):                                Will Power (Dual 1) and Helio Castroneves (Dual 2)
2015 POLESITTER(S):           Helio Castroneves (1:17.5362; Dual 1) and Takuma Sato (1:16.1371; Dual 2)
 
RAHAL’S BEST ROAD/
STREET START/FINISH:        Pole at St. Pete (street) 2009 / 1st at St. Pete in 2008
RAHAL’S BEST DETROIT
START/FINISH:                     6th in 2008 with NHLR / 2nd in Dual 1 in 2014 with RLL; will be his 7th & 8th starts here
 
RLL’S BEST START/
FINISH AT DETROIT:            2nd – Bobby Rahal (1992) & Jakes (2013) / 1st – Bobby Rahal (1992 inaugural Belle Isle event)

NEWS & NOTES:
 

PODIUM FINISHES THE PAST TWO YEARS AT BELLE ISLE FOR RLL
The Chevrolet Indy Duel in Detroit will mark the Verizon IndyCar Series’ sixth visit to Detroit, and it’s fourth since 2008. The Motor City hosted Indy car racing from 1989-91 in Downtown Detroit. The race moved to Belle Isle Park from 1992-2001 and 2007-2008 and returned in 2012.  The 2015 event will mark the 16th year for Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing (RLL) to compete at the Raceway at Belle Isle Park and the team’s 18th and 19th races.

The team’s highest start of second place came in the inaugural running on Belle Isle in 1992 by Bobby Rahal and in 2013 by James Jakes in Dual 2. Bobby Rahal brought the team its highest finish with a win in 1992, Jakes added a third podium for the team in 2013 with his second place finish and Graham Rahal added a fourth with his second place finish in Dual 1 last year. In total, the team has earned four podiums (G. Rahal 2014, Jakes 2013 & Max Papis 2000 – 2nd), five top-five finishes and 13 top-10’s here (chart available). Prior to 2015, the team prepared a total of 24 entries for drivers such as Bobby Rahal (1992-1998), Mike Groff (1993-94), Raul Boesel (1995), Bryan Herta (1996-99), Max Papis (1999-2001), Kenny Brack (2000-01), Ryan Hunter-Reay (2007-08) Takuma Sato (2012), Graham Rahal (2013-2014) and James Jakes (2013).  The No. 15 Steak ‘n Shake entry for Graham Rahal will bring that total to 25 in 2015.

Last year in Detroit, Rahal qualified ninth for Dual 1, led 10 laps, challenged for the win and finished second to Will Power, who said Rahal was so fast that had he been able to pass, there was no way the Australian would have been able to get back by. Rahal started 14th in Dual 2 after the team elected to qualify on primary tires to save a set of red alternate tires for the race – a strategy that didn’t pay off later. On the opening lap, Power, who was later penalized with a drive through penalty for avoidable contact, squeezed Josef Newgarden in Turn 4 and the two made contact. Rahal was behind the two and had nowhere to go and hit Newgarden before Justin Wilson ran into the rear of the No. 15 entry which resulted in gear problems. By the time the team replaced the front nose and repaired the gear sensor, he returned to the track seven laps down. He ultimately retired in 21st place after he brushed the wall and damaged hissuspension after completing 43 of 70 laps.

GRAHAM ON EXPECATIONS AT DETROIT AFTER 2014 SECOND PLACE FINISH

“I feel really good about Detroit. I felt that if we could continue to stay close in points after Indy we would have a pretty good opportunity ahead of us with as strong as we were in Detroit last year. Detroit is a very similar place to St. Pete and obviously with it being a doubleheader, it’s a huge weekend for the championship. We are right on Helio’s heels in fifth place in the point standings and just a couple of points behind Dixon. We will just keep working hard and we’ll be there in the hunt. This race is a one of attrition a lot of times because it’s a pretty bumpy track. I heard Roger (Penske) has done a lot of great work up there to make the track conditions a little bit better. You have to be smart, patient and let it come to you. I think we did that pretty well last year and this year we’re going to have to do even better.”

GRAHAM AND THE TOP FIVE IN THE POINT STANDINGS

Rahal has run in the top five in six races this season with the exception of Long Beach and has led the race five times for a total of 26 laps. A penalty in St. Pete for avoidable contact while trying to pass a damaged race car and a shortened race due to weather in NOLA potentially limited his points take-home in those events but he is currently ranked fifth in series standings with a total of 204. He trails fourth place Helio Castroneves by two points (206), third place Scott Dixon by seven (211) and second place Will Power by 43 (247) after Round 6 of 16.

GRAHAM RAHAL IN DETROIT

The event will be Graham’s seventh and eighth races here. In 2014 he qualified ninth for Dual 1 in Detroit, led 10 laps, challenged for the win and finished second to Will Power, who said Rahal was so fast that had he been able to pass, there was no way the Australian would have been able to get back by. He started 14th in Dual 2 after the team elected to qualify on primary tires to save a set of red alternate tires for the race – a strategy that didn’t pay off. On the opening lap, Will Power, who was later penalized with a drive through penalty for avoidable contact, squeezed Josef Newgarden in Turn 4 and the two made contact. Rahal was behind the two and had nowhere to go and hit Newgarden before Justin Wilson ran into the rear of the No. 15 entry which resulted in gear problems. By the time the team replaced the front nose and repaired the gear sensor, he returned to the track seven laps down. He ultimately retired in 21st place after he brushed the wall and damaged his suspension after completing 43 of 70 laps. He qualified 14th for Dual 1 in Detroit in 2013 but started 23rd due to an unapproved engine change at Indy.  He gained three spots on the opening lap and another two on the first restart on Lap 4. The team elected for an alternate strategy and the timing of the caution flags worked in the team’s favor and Rahal was able to climb 14 spots to finish ninth.  He qualified 15th for Dual 2 in Detroit and finished ninth.  In 2012, he qualified seventh with Service Central Chip Ganassi Racing but had a 10-grid penalty for an unapproved engine change and started 17th.  He was eighth when he made his final stop on Lap 45/60 but during the red flag stop to repair the track, a clutch problem surfaced and he was unable to continue and retired in 19th place. In 2008 he drove for Newman/Haas/Lanigan Racing and progressed to the Firestone Fast Six in qualifying for the first time in his series career and qualified sixth.  The team chose the same pit strategy as then race leader Dixon which almost worked but a late race fourth caution botched the plan and he had to stop for a splash of fuel with three laps to go and dropped to 13th.

BOBBY RAHAL IN DETROIT

Bobby Rahal competed in downtown Detroit from 1989-1991 with two second place finishes to his credit.  When the series moved to Belle Isle, he won the inaugural event in 1992 and went on to compete there through 1998.  In total, he competed in Detroit 10 times (three downtown, seven on Belle Isle) with one win (1992), three podiums (2nd – 1990, 1991), four top five finishes and five top-10’s. A chart is available upon request.

Rahal Finished Fifth in the Indy 500; Servia was 15th When Carpenter Attempted a Pass That Led to Contact and a 29th Place Finish

Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing
Indianapolis 500 – Indianapolis Motor Speedway
Verizon IndyCar Series
RACE NOTES/QUOTES – Sunday, May 24, 2015

RAHAL FINISHED FIFTH IN THE INDY 500; SERVIA WAS 15TH WHEN CARPENTER ATTEMPTED A PASS THAT LED TO CONTACT AND A 29TH PLACE FINISH

GRAHAM RAHAL, No. 15 Steak ‘n Shake Dallara/Honda/Firestone: “I’m proud of this Steak ‘n Shake team. We pushed as hard as we could. I keep saying to the guys that the biggest thing is to keep coming home in the points. If we can be the top finishing Honda and gain some points then we’ve had a successful day. Obviously the three guys we are trying to keep up with in the championship all finished ahead of us but still I feel very good about it. I’m very proud this organization for turning our results around. Coming off the last two years here, I can’t tell you how good this feels. With 15 laps to go, to have to charge up from ninth was pretty tricky. Overall I thought the racing was pretty good.”

FAST FACTS: Rahal started 17th and ran in the top-10 most of the race. He was ninth with 16 laps to go and moved up to a fifth place finish… Was his eighth Indy 500 and fourth with RLL. 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 four of his seven previous races here… He is fifth in series point standings with a total of 204 and is only two points out of fourth (Castroneves, 206) and seven out of third (Dixon, 211).

ORIOL SERVIA, No. 32 Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone: “I think Ed got a little optimistic. I think he did to me what Hinchcliffe did to him last year. Funny enough we talked about what happened the other day. He had a run on me but it was coming too late. I don’t know if he thought I was going to lift or something. I’m sure I’m going to get a phone call once he sees a replay. It’s a shame; I think we are both smart racers and we usually don’t do those things. The race is over, the one we really wanted to win. The car felt very good. I was just being really patient because the race was only half way and I felt really strong. The team kept asking about the car and I didn’t want to change anything because it felt so good. I just wanted to be there at the end, at the last pit stop. It’s unfortunate. I think he was struggling all day and frustrated. I’m very upset they didn’t send the sweepers earlier. When Clausen crashed, he crashed because there were so many marbles up there and I was on the radio saying ‘They need to clean if they want some racing.’ And they didn’t clean them so that’s another reason I was not going to stay high; the marbles were huge. I knew if I stayed high we were crashing and Carpenter knows that. Anyway, I’m thinking of next year already.”

FAST FACTS: Retired in 29th place after Ed Carpenter attempted an inside pass while Servia was 15th and took both drivers out of the race after 112 of 200 laps… Was his seventh Indy 500 and third with RLL. His best finish here is fourth in 2012 with Dreyer & Reinbold Racing and best start was third in 2011 with Newman/Haas Racing.

NEXT UP: The Chevrolet Dual in Detroit doubleheader is next weekend, May 30 and 31. Both races will be broadcast on ABC. Rahal finished second in Dual 1 last year.

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RLLR – CARB DAY NOTES/QUOTES – Friday, May 22, 2015

Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing
Indianapolis 500 – Indianapolis Motor Speedway
Verizon IndyCar Series
CARB DAY NOTES/QUOTES – Friday, May 22, 2015
 

RAHAL AND SERVIA COMPLETED FINAL CARB DAY PRACTICE IN PREPARATION FOR SUNDAY’S INDY 500
 

1)         Will Power                 229.020 mph  46 laps
13)       Oriol Servia               226.212 mph  41 laps
22)       Graham Rahal           225.288 mph  45 laps
GRAHAM RAHAL, No. 15 Steak ‘n Shake Dallara/Honda/Firestone:  “I think the Steak ‘n Shake car is very consistent.  I felt extremely good about it off the bat but I think we just need to find a little bit more ultimate pace.  It’s going to be a battle but we’ll be okay. We’ve got to look at the drag numbers to figure out the downforce level we want to be at but we feel like we were in the zone and it was off the ultimate pace a little bit.”

FAST FACTS: He will start 17th in his eighth Indy 500 and fourth with RLL. 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 four of his seven previous races here… He is tied for fourth in series point standings with Scott Dixon with a total of 144 and is only 27 points out of first place (Juan Pablo Montoya, 177).

ORIOL SERVIA, No. 32 Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone:  “I feel I have the car that has felt the best in all of my 500’s so far so I’m pretty happy. The last practice is the one that you really want to feel how the car is compared to the others and in traffic. And it’s hard to judge who is on what tires, at what point but I think we have something to play with definitely. There are two or three guys that I feel are definitely in their own class – Power, Dixon and Kanaan – but again it’s a 500 mile race and you have to make sure you are in contention at the end and I’m pretty happy.”

FAST FACTS: He will start 13th in his seventh Indy 500 and third with RLL. His best finish here is fourth in 2012 with Dreyer & Reinbold Racing and best start in 2011 with Newman/Haas Racing.

NEXT UP: The 99th running of the Indianapolis 500 will take the Green Flag at 12:12 p.m. ET on Sunday, May 24. ABC will broadcast the event from 11-3:30 p.m. ET.

Final Practice Before Car Day Ended Due to a Crash But Was Later Reinstated; Servia Ran In First Practice and Rahal Ran in the Second

Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing
Indianapolis 500 – Indianapolis Motor Speedway
Verizon IndyCar Series
PRACTICE NOTES/QUOTES – Monday, May 18, 2015
FINAL PRACTICE BEFORE CARB DAY ENDED EARLY DUE TO A CRASH BUT WAS LATER REINSTATED: SERVIA RAN IN FIRST PRACTICE AND RAHAL RAN IN THE SECOND

PRACTICE 9
1) Simon Pagenaud 225.260 mph 12 laps
5) Oriol Servia 224.356 mph 24 laps

PRACTICE 10
1) Sage Karam 227.831 mph 72 laps
22) Graham Rahal 222.941 mph 54 laps

GRAHAM RAHAL, No. 15 Steak ‘n Shake Dallara/Honda/Firestone: “As a driver, a crash like James (Hinchcliffe) had is just something you never want to see. I hope he makes a quick recovery. We had a clutch issue and didn’t get on track before the initial session was stopped when he crashed. Then when we got back out, the conditions were tricky. The car was sliding around a lot but we got a little better there at the end of the session. It’s going to be a tough race. We just need to wait and see what the weather conditions will be like on race day.”

FAST FACTS: Will be his eighth Indy 500 and fourth with RLL. 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 four of his seven previous races here… He is tied for fourth in series point standings with Scott Dixon with a total of 144 and is only 27 points out of first place (Juan Pablo Montoya, 177).

ORIOL SERVIA, No. 32 Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone: “The car was honestly almost too good. It was one of those days that the conditions were ideal and race day it’s probably not going to be like that. It will be a lot hotter on race day but the car felt really strong. We didn’t get many laps in but I am very, very happy. I’m looking forward to Carb Day and race day for the Indy 500. It’s not good when something breaks and when somebody gets hurt. I hope James (Hinchcliffe) has a quick recovery.”

FAST FACTS: Will be his seventh Indy 500 and third with RLL. His best finish here is fourth in 2012 with Dreyer & Reinbold Racing and best start in 2011 with Newman/Haas Racing.

NEXT UP: Carb Day practice will take place Friday from 11:00-12:00.

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