HUNTER-REAY CHARGES INTO THE TOP TEN SUNDAY TO LEAD ANDRETTI AUTOSPORT DRIVERS AT INFINEON RACEWAY
SONOMA, Calif. (Aug. 28, 2011) - The demanding Infineon Raceway 2.3-mile road circuit proved to be a challenging track Sunday for the Andretti Autosport drivers. But all of them reached the finish line in the sun-drenched event.
Recent New Hampshire winner Ryan Hunter-Reay piloted the No. 28 Team DHL/Circle K/Sun Drop Citrus Soda machine from his 19th starting position to record an impressive top-ten finish in the 75-lap Indy Grand Prix of Sonoma. Hunter-Reay battled his way through a tough field in some dramatic wheel-to-wheel action to notch 10th position. It was the Florida driver's sixth consecutive top-ten as he now fights for a top-ten placing in the final IZOD IndyCar Series point standings.
Hunter-Reay was one of two drivers to pass nine cars in Sunday's Northern California race, the most passes in the feature event.
Mike Conway, the Long Beach winner in the No. 27 Team @FollowAndretti car, finished 16th after a late pit stop for tires. Conway, who qualified seventh Saturday, ran consistently in the top seven through the first half of the race before the late stop relegated him to the 16th spot.
Danica Patrick fought a sliding car most of the day in the No. 7 GoDaddy.com entry to finish 21st. Patrick's Go Daddy squad attempted a different race strategy by pitting early in the contest and racing out of the leaders' plan pit sequence.
Marco Andretti, the Iowa champion in the No. 26 Team All Natural Snapple car, started 14th and raced competitively Sunday before a broken front wing late in the race forced an additional pit stop. Andretti ended up 24th in the race.
There is no break for the IZOD IndyCar Series as the campaign travels across country to the inaugural Baltimore Grand Prix next Sunday, Sept. 4. The new Grand Prix course in the inner harbor of Baltimore remains in good shape following a tough two days of weather from Hurricane Irene. Practice runs begin this Friday with qualifying set for Saturday. The first-ever Baltimore Grand Prix will be televised live on Sept. 4 on Versus TV at 2 p.m. EDT.Text
MARCO ANDRETTI, #26 TEAM ALL NATURAL SNAPPLE CAR
Finished the race in 24th
"It was a disappointing day for the Snapple team. We just didn't have the car we needed in order to gain track position. Near the end we had to come to replace the nose, which put us back even further. From here, we'll move on and look forward to Baltimore."
MIKE CONWAY, #27 TEAM @FOLLOWANDRETTI CAR
Recorded a 16th place finish
"The tires just really went off quickly today. I was just trying to keep the thing on the track most of the day. It wasn't easy as I was just trying to keep my position. At the end, we came in for new tires and attempted to make something of it. I was driving hard and passing people. On the final lap, I tried the outside in turn two and (Sebastian) Saavedra pushed me off the track and I held my ground. He spun around and punctured my tire. That was how the day ended. Not a good finish for us."
RYAN HUNTER-REAY, #28 TEAM DHL/CIRCLE K/SUN DROP CITRUS SODA CAR
Ended the race in 10th place
"It was one of those days that we just had to hang in there. We came from 19th to 10th and just passed the cars on track. We didn't get any help from attrition at all. It was one of those days that we had to hang in there. We just had to race as best we could and get around people. It was a tough weekend. Now, Team DHL/Circle K/Sun Drop will move to the Baltimore street course and look for a strong rebound. We have been good on the street courses this year. It should be fun in the first race at Baltimore."
DANICA PATRICK, #7 TEAM GoDaddy.com CAR
Finished the race in 21st
"During the beginning of the race, the car was incredibly loose which made it very uncomfortable. We came in for our second pit stop, changed the tires and took some front wing out, which really helped the car. It's not the result that we wanted for the GoDaddy.com car, but hopefully we'll come back and make up for it at Baltimore."