FIRESTONE FIREHAWK RACE REPORT
IZOD IndyCar Series - Kentucky Indy 300
Kentucky Speedway - Sparta, Ky.
Sunday, October 2, 2011 - Round 16 of 17
Sunday's Top Finishers: 1. Ed Carpenter; 2. Dario Franchitti; 3. Scott Dixon; 4. James Hinchcliffe; 5. Ryan Hunter-Reay.
Race Temperatures: Track ranged from 93°-101° F (34°-38° C) and ambient from 62°-65° F (17°-18° C).
Firestone Tire Performance Recap: Firestone Racing supplied a new tire specification this weekend and, while challenged by the cooler temperatures, the Firehawk radials held up sensationally well. That was proven at the beginning of the race, with the first 80 laps run under green-flag conditions at an average of 215 mph. And again at the end, when Ed Carpenter and Dario Franchitti battled tire-to-tire for the final 20 laps, with Carpenter edging across the finish line first by a mere 0.0098 of a second.
From race winner Ed Carpenter, #67 Dollar General/Sarah Fisher Racing Dallara/Honda/ Firestone: "This feels great. This is a great team, such a great group of people, it's been awesome to be a part of it and give this team its first win and my first win. It feels unbelievable. The tires were so durable today. We couldn't ask for a better tire than what Firestone gives us. All day long, the tires just kept getting better. Even yesterday in the cold temperatures, they were still sticking for us. They were awesome."
From Sarah Fisher, Owner, Sarah Fisher Racing: "I'm speechless. The guys have worked their tails off. I haven't been in the shop in three weeks (after having a baby) - maybe I should stay away. This win is a huge thing to add to our team. We couldn't have done it without all of the wonderful people we have on our team."
From Joe Barbieri, Manager, Firestone Racing: "As with most everyone in the IndyCar paddock, Firestone Racing is so happy for Ed Carpenter and Sarah Fisher Racing. They're a most deserving small team that demonstrated today what they can do. The Firestone tires showed what they could do all weekend, too. In spite of the cooler weather, the new Firehawk spec did its job and delivered the grip and durability that these drivers need to race at these speeds. To witness Ed and Dario race side by side those final laps without wavering illustrates just how much confidence they have in their Firestone tires to let them do so."
Firestone "Tire-ific" Move of the Race: This $10,000 prize is awarded after each IndyCar Series race to the driver best utilizing his or her Firestone tires to make a bold, dramatic move during the event. Nominees from today's race are: Townsend Bell, who moved up more spots (15) than anyone from start to finish, including advancing 12 positions in the first 16 laps; Ed Carpenter, for the final nail-biting pass to win at the checkered flag; and Dario Franchitti, for his crew's brilliant first pit stop to put him in front for 143 laps. Fans can vote this week at www.indycar.com to determine the winner.