Birmingham Open Test
SERVIA AND HINCHCLIFFE FIFTH AND SEVENTH QUICK ON THE SECOND AND FINAL DAY OF THE IZOD INDYCAR SERIES OPEN TEST AT BARBER MOTORSPORTS PARK
Oriol Servia, No. 02 Dallara/Honda/Firestone: “I’m so happy! Obviously its great to be in the top-five but I’m just so happy. When you are running in the top-five there is a reason. I felt good in the car, with the team. I was a blast when I looked at the scoring board an hour before the end and we were one and two. That’s the way Newman/Haas has always been and that’s the way it has to be and it just felt great that we got there with two days of testing. There is still a lot to come from myself and the car. We progressed big stages to get where we are and there is still more. I feel very happy; everybody is super motivated. James was super helpful all day yesterday and today with him knowing the track and I really hope we can be teammates. The two cars worked together really well and we made a lot of progress together. I’m very happy with the team and myself. When you are a year out of the car, of course you still think you can drive but it is just so great knowing it is true.”
· FAST FACTS: Servia, a native of Catalonia, Spain, has made 15 starts for NHR which include his first Indy car win (Montreal 2005) and pole (Surfers Paradise, Australia 2005) as well as a total of seven top-three, 11 top-five and 13 top-10 finishes. In 2005, Servia replaced NHR driver Bruno Junqueira, who suffered a season-ending injury at the Indy 500 on May 29, and then went on to finish second to teammate Sebastien Bourdais in the point standings after 11 events with the team. Servia returned to NHR in 2009 for four races with a season-best finish of fourth at Twin Ring Motegi.
James Hinchcliffe, No. 06 Dallara/Honda/Firestone: “We made more progress today which was great. I was personally a little surprised with the pace we had yesterday; I wasn’t quite expecting it. I woke up this morning hoping it wasn’t some sort of flash in the pan. Luckily we ran quick this morning; I think we were fourth quick behind the Penske boys and this afternoon the focus was going to be a little more on some longer runs. We did one new tire run which was good and put us right at the top for that time of day. And then I had a little moment on track again which ruined another set of tires so it compromised the strategy a little bit for the rest of the day. That was it for new tire runs. We went back out to get some long runs in for the first race. We know we can run quick on a set of sticker tires so we need to see what we can do over a stint.”
· FAST FACTS: Toronto native James Hinchcliffe, 24, finished second in the 2010 Firestone Indy Lights season standings after wins in Long Beach, Edmonton and Chicagoland and poles in St. Petersburg, Long Beach, Watkins Glen and Edmonton. In total he earned eight podium finishes in 13 races. Hinchcliffe progressed through the ranks of the Rotax (2002), F2000 (2003), Formula BMW (2004), Star Mazda (2005), and Atlantic series (2006-2008) before joining the Firestone Indy Lights series in 2009. He also competed in a season of A1GP competition (2007)…He tested with NHR for two days at Sebring in December and another two days in January. It was his first time in an Indy car.