INDYCAR SERIES Q&A - May 6, 2009 An Interview with Ryan Briscoe IndyCar Series driver Ryan Briscoe participated in a Q&A session this week, discussing the upcoming races at Indianapolis, Milwaukee and more. Below are select quotes from...
INDYCAR SERIES Q&A - May 6, 2009
An Interview with Ryan Briscoe
IndyCar Series driver Ryan Briscoe participated in a Q&A session this week, discussing the upcoming races at Indianapolis, Milwaukee and more. Below are select quotes from her interview followed by "Five Questions with Ryan Briscoe."
* 27-year-old competing in his third full season in the IndyCar Series
* Drives the No. 6 Team Penske entry
* Ranks second in points on the strength of a victory at St. Petersburg and fourth-place finish at Kansas
* Has 39 career starts, recording three victories, four poles, nine top-five finishes and 19 top-10s
* Earned his first career pole at Infineon as a rookie in 2005
* Finished fifth in points in 2008, earning wins at Milwaukee and Mid-Ohio
* Has competed in three Indianapolis 500s, recording two top-10 finishes, including a fifth in 2007.
* Qualified third for the Indianapolis 500 last year, and finished 23rd after contact with Danica Patrick on pit lane.
Q.For just about every race you can ask a driver about that weekend and you can hear him say, 'If we can't win it, we need to get a good points finish for the championship.' I don't know that I've ever really heard anyone say that about the Indy 500. Is the focus on Indy solely on winning the race?
RYAN BRISCOE: Well, yeah. I can pretty much say we've put the championship on hold for a few weeks here. We're just focused on trying to get the big trophy here this month. You can pretty surely say it's bigger than the championship, this race. You don't really get remembered for coming second at the Indy 500. Definitely a lot of focus on trying to win this race.
But, being my fourth start here, it's really the first time, though, coming into it where I feel as though I've sort of got the confidence and the experience where I can actually have a legitimate shot at it. Just really excited that we're carrying good momentum coming into the race this month.
Q.What's the game plan as you come into the month? You have a couple days, obviously qualifying and pole day on Saturday. What is the game plan as you approach the month?
RYAN BRISCOE: It gets going pretty quickly. The first week is all about getting the balance into the car, getting it tuned in, and then by the end of the week feeling confident enough to start trimming out and getting ready for qualifying. Saturday we're already going for pole. Most importantly, if you can't get the pole, you need to try to at least get qualified on that first day so you can start working on race preparation.
But, it all happens really quickly, and there's not a lot of time to be messing around or running into trouble. So we need to be smart about the running and hopefully just keep things simple and keep things running smoothly, get ourselves in a good position to have a good day on Saturday for qualifying.
Q.What are some of the keys that it takes to put in a good run and get up front or even win the pole?
RYAN BRISCOE: You need to be able to trim this thing out as much as possible. It's hard. You need to get a good balance to begin with, and then step by step just keep trimming it out a little bit at a time until really the car starts sliding around too much where you can't stay flat.
But the conditions change. The wind at Indianapolis has such an effect on the car's performance and balance, you just really got to keep an eye on that. I think that's where having the experience of a team like Penske behind me, that's where they can help so much, with just keeping things on track. With Rick Mears, as well, he's always been a great help here, where he just keeps you focused on the right things.
Five Questions with Ryan Briscoe:
1. Wedding planning - hands on or off?
"Medium. I'm involved and know what's going on, but really most of it's Nicole."
2. What song is playing most often on your ipod
"That's a tough one. I'm always just on shuffle, and whatever just comes on from dance to rock or pop, whatever."
3. What was your first job?
"Working in my dad's dealership detailing cars."
4. What is your favorite movie?
"Probably Zoolander is what I enjoy watching most when I'm traveling."
5. Peanut butter or vegemite?
"I don't know. I love my peanut butter. I love my vegemite, as well."
The 2009 IndyCar Series season continues May 24 with the Indianapolis 500 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The race will be telecast live in High Definition at 1 p.m. (EDT) by ABC. The race will air live on the IMS Radio Network, XM channel 145 and Sirius channel 211. The radio broadcast also will be carried on www.indycar.com. The 2009 Firestone Indy Lights season continues May 22 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The race will be telecast May 22 by VERSUS as part of its Carb Day coverage from 11 a.m. - 4 p.m. (EDT).