Both RLL drivers pleased with the track layout.
GRAHAM RAHAL, No. 15 National Guard Dallara/Honda/Firestone: “I think we are starting to figure some things out with the National Guard car. We’re getting it into a better zone, and definitely more competitive. I’m proud of these guys for keeping their heads down and getting it done. There is still work to be done but its work to be done coming from sixth (in afternoon session) versus coming from the back which is a good change for us. Hopefully we can improve on Friday, hopefully it will stay dry and we’ll see what happens.
“It’s (track) fast. I think that’s what this place has over others. This is the fastest road course that we will go to this season. The top speed is 196, 197 mph which is pretty quick for these things on a road course. I’m pretty impressed. The facilities are phenomenal as you would expect; this is Indy. It’s IndyCar Country and I hope the fans come out and support this. It’s by far the closest field you have seen in IndyCar history this weekend. It’s very, very competitive.”
FAST FACTS: Will be his first Indy car race on the IMS road course. He raced in the IndyPro Series road race here in 2006 on a slightly different configuration. He won pole and led 21 laps en route to a second place finish during the US Grand Prix… His best qualifying position in the Indy 500 is fourth in 2009 with Newman/Haas/Lanigan Racing and best finish is third with Service Central Chip Ganassi Racing in 2011 after he led six laps… His Indy car highlights include a win (2008) and pole (2009) in St. Petersburg.
ORIOL SERVIA, No. 16 Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone: “Graham and I started the day with the same setup and had the exact same grip on the car but in the second practice, we tried two different solutions and I think Graham is happy with his and I wasn’t happy at all. It’s a benefit of having two cars. I’m pretty sure we will end up moving towards the solutions the National Guard team found.
(On changes to the track since the Open Test:) “They have done a good job finishing all of the small details. They painted the curbs and they look great. It’s funny how just a little bit of color and aesthetics change the whole feel. They’ve painted the curbs in three different color tones which look really nice. I’m sure the fans are going to like it and they will look great on TV.”
FAST FACTS: Will be his first race on the road course at IMS… Servia, 39, a native of Pals, Spain, has made 191 starts in CART, Champ Car and the IndyCar Series since his rookie season in 2000 prior to 2014. His Indy car highlights include one win (Montreal 2005) and one pole (Surfers Paradise, Australia 2005) as well as a total of 19 top-three, 51 top-five and 100 top-10 finishes. He competed for the team in the 2009 Indianapolis 500 and was in ninth place halfway through the race when a mechanical failure led to his retirement in 26th place… His best qualifying position in the Indy 500 is third and best finish is fifth – both with Newman/Haas Racing in 2011.
Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing