IRL: Chicagoland: Kosuke Matsuura race report

Matsuura Closes the Season 11th at Chicagoland The 2006 IndyCar Series season came to a close today with the PEAK Antifreeze Indy 300 at Chicagoland Speedway. After claiming his career-best starting position at the 1.5-mile oval of eighth, ...

Matsuura Closes the Season 11th at Chicagoland

The 2006 IndyCar Series season came to a close today with the PEAK Antifreeze Indy 300 at Chicagoland Speedway. After claiming his career-best starting position at the 1.5-mile oval of eighth, Kosuke Matsuura made a strong start and was running as high as fourth in the opening stages. After losing touch with the lead group of four cars, Matsuura found himself embroiled in a large pack midfield and consistently battled in and out of the top 10. He ended the day with an 11th -place result.

Matsuura captured six top-nine finishes this season with a best result of sixth at Homestead. He is 13th in the final championship standings.

With their result today, Sam Hornish Jr. and Marlboro Team Penske are the 2006 IndyCar Series champions.

Kosuke Matsuura, #55 Panasonic ARTA Dallara/Honda/Firestone:
"It was a tough race. I had a really good start and came up to the front cars. At that point, my car was really good, maybe a little tight but the handling was okay. Each pit stop we put more front wing because I had a slight understeer in the traffic by then and the car lost a little bit of speed. The last stint, we gained a little more speed but it was too late. I think I did my best today and the team did a great job like they have all season. I would like to thank all of the sponsors at Super Aguri Fernandez Racing for giving me a great opportunity this year. I also want to thank Aguri [Suzuki] who I have been with nine years. A big thanks to Aguri, Adrian [Fernandez] and all the sponsors. I want to continue next season with this team and these guys and find some more things and get some more good results."

Chris Finch, Race Engineer:
"It was a pretty good race for us. The car seemed well-balanced and we just made minor tire pressure adjustments and front wing. Kosuke didn't say a lot on the radio. We just tried to push forward and continue working on our race craft. It was a good year. We worked really hard with the Dallara being our first year with it. We learned a lot and there have been several races, like this one, where we showed a lot of potential in qualifying and didn't put the final package together for the race. The crew did a fantastic job all year and work really well together. We'll go into the off-season working really hard for next year. On behalf of everyone here, we would like to thank everyone involved with the Super Aguri Fernandez Racing team -- Aguri Suzuki and everyone at Super Aguri, Panasonic, Autobacs, ANA -- and, of course, everyone at Honda and Firestone."

-credit: fernandez racing

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Kosuke Matsuura , Aguri Suzuki , Sam Hornish Jr.
Teams Team Penske