IRL: Pikes Peak: Kosuke Matsuura race report

Long Day for Matsuura in Honda Indy 225 Kosuke Matsuura finished 13th this afternoon in the Honda Indy 225 after struggling with understeer on the ...

Long Day for Matsuura in Honda Indy 225

Kosuke Matsuura finished 13th this afternoon in the Honda Indy 225 after struggling with understeer on the #55 Panasonic ARTA car throughout the 225-lap race at Pikes Peak International Raceway. Matsuura, unable to mount a challenge with the front-runners, settled in to the mid-pack early in the race. He endured a long day after going a lap down prior to his first pit stop.

Today's win by Dan Wheldon clinches Honda's second consecutive IndyCar Series Manufacturer's Championship.

Kosuke Matsuura, #55 Panasonic ARTA Panoz/Honda/Firestone: "I was happy we were able to finish the race today, but the car was not quick enough. It has been the same on a lot of the short ovals this year, but I think we did find something here and we were able to hang with a lot of guys out there today. I had a lot of push at the beginning. The car was not as bad as we expected on the second stint, but just not much speed. I think we need to work on finding a little bit more mechanical grip. The finish was disappointing because this was not my 100 percent of potential. We did our best today and the mechanics did a great job. I am really happy that Honda claimed the manufacturer's championship."

KOSUKE MATSUURA FAST FACTS: This was his second start at Pikes Peak and 29th IndyCar Series career start-- scored his fifth top-10 finish of the season in the last event at Kentucky-- recorded best finish to date this season of seventh at Texas-- best starting position to date this season was seventh at St. Petersburg-- currently sits 13th in the point standings-- is in his second season of IndyCar Series competition-- earned 2004 Bombardier Rookie of the Year honors-- named 2004 Bank One Rookie of the Year at the Indianapolis 500-- recorded his IndyCar Series career-best finish of fourth at Kentucky Speedway last season, and claimed his career-best starting position of second at Michigan in 2004-- 25 years old from Aichi, Japan-- finished third in the 2003 Formula Renault V6 Eurocup Championship with three wins and eight podiums-- finished second in German F3 competition in 2002 with two wins and six pole positions-- won the 2000 Japanese Formula Dream Championship with six wins and eight pole positions-- currently resides in Indianapolis, Indiana.

Adrian Fernandez, Co-Owner:
"It was a tough day. We just didn't have the handling on the cars today. It is always harder here at Pikes Peak because of the higher altitude and handling is everything. You could see a lot of cars going off and some cars being strong and more consistent. We just didn't have the cars today to be able to repeat what we did last weekend in Kentucky. We know it wasn't our day. Congratulations to Honda. They once again proved themselves to be just a fantastic company. They never give up and always give us the best opportunity to win."

-safr-

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Series INDYCAR