IRL: Indy 500: Post-race quotes


ROGER YASUKAWA (#12 Playa Del Racing Panoz/Honda/Firestone): "I think we all did a pretty good job. Obviously, we probably had the least track time out of all. During the first two stints, we struggled quite a bit with a loose car. We made some adjustments during the race. I think we were really fast at the end. If we would have started with the car we have right now, I think we would have been in the top 10. That is the way it is. I am glad to be in the show. I am glad to finish the race. There's nothing better than this." (About how the weather changed his strategy): "To be honest, Carb Day we were a little bit lost because all of the sudden it was really hot. We ended up having a lot of downforce. At the end, our car was actually running a lot better than Carb Day. I am happy with what we had."

FELIPE GIAFFONE (#14 ABC Supply Co./AJ Foyt Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone): "We'd been struggling so much. It was a really tough day. I thought that I actually crashed so many times today. I was actually on my way to the pits to put on new tires, and I got into the marbles trying to stay out of the way of the guys and brushed the wall. It's too bad; we were just having a really bad day."

EDDIE CHEEVER JR. (#51 Cheever Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone): "Very difficult car to drive the first 40 laps. It was very, very nervous. Then we made two adjustments, the track came to us, then the car was good. Just too slow in the straightaway. It was really good in the corners. Actually very fast in the corners. We could slingshot right out of the corners carrying a lot of speed. Tire wear was also good. Too bad we were not faster down the straights."

DARIO FRANCHITTI (#27 Klein Tools/Canadian Club Dallara/Honda/Firestone): "That last yellow kind of hurt us. Dan (Wheldon) got slowed up on the restart in Turn 4 and I hit him, and somebody hit me in the side so it was pretty physical on that last restart. I thought Marco and Michael were going to finish 1-2 for a minute. That would have been pretty cool." (It looked like you had a well-handling car all day): "It wasn't quick enough, but it was handling pretty well, when I wasn't stuck behind Ed Carpenter, who was a lap down, I was doing OK. He seemed to be in sequence with me, but a lap down. Everybody else gets a blue flag or warning, he gets nothing. Shouldn't be very surprised about that."

BRYAN HERTA (#7 XM Satellite Radio Dallara/Honda/Firestone): (How was your car the last 170 laps after you got it together?): "Yeah, it was a tough, tough day. Once we made some changes -- we made some big changes in the pits, unfortunately it took a lot of laps to do it -- then the car was a lot more competitive. It still wasn't fast enough, but at least we got to a position where we could run competitively out there. I want to thank my guys for hard work the whole month long."

SCOTT DIXON (#9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone): (About blocking penalty. What happened?): "I don't know, you know, you hold your position, I let him (Kanaan) by at the end, you know, he really had a run. You don't want to make it easy for them all the time. It happens to you, you get people to do it to you, it's just how they call it. It's so up and down"

PJ JONES (#98 CURB Records Special Panoz/Honda/Firestone): "We just struggled through (the race). We were so loose from the beginning. We had to come in and make a couple pit stops. It was either do that or wreck. After that, we could run up to 211 (mph). That was about all we could run. I had a lot of laps between 208 (mph) and 211. We thought: 'Let's not race anybody. Let's just run a race, get through it and finish.' I wish we could start the month right now. Now I have some laps, and I'm a lot better than I was before the race. I enjoyed it, but wish we were a little bit better. The team did a good job."

JAQUES LAZIER (#21 VIDEOPOKER.COM Panoz/Honda/Firestone): "We obviously had a really good car at the beginning of the race. We had a pretty good run. When there was a crash there, my spotter never told me there was a wing sitting on the track. I never saw it. I was behind another car. I kind of just touched down a little bit. He went by Helio's (Castroneves) left rear tire and hit my front wing. I guess it flew up in the stands. I hope everyone is OK with that one, because that scares me. We basically tore a hole about 2 feet in diameter in the undertray when that happened. It tore up the front wing. From there, it was just a battle. The car wasn't handling very well. These guys are fighters. If this team ever got a full-time sponsor and we were in every single race, then I'm telling you, this team would do very well. They just keep fighting and fighting. I am just very proud of everyone at Playa Del Racing. We could have given up. We kept fighting and we have a top 20 (finish). It is a pretty decent finish with what we had." (About if he learned anything from Friday's practice for today): "(The weather) was a bump, but at the same time we knew what we were going to have. I think at the very beginning there we had an awesome car. I think we would have been able to run up into the top 10. We tore the big hole, and ever since then the car was just evil from there on out. It was very inconsistent. It would push, then go loose and everything in between. We just fought with it and got it working pretty decently there at the end. Like I said, it was a very good effort for Playa Del Racing. It is something we can hang out heads very high about, be proud and keep our chins up. One of these days we'll get a full-time effort and be really strong."

DAN WHELDON (#10 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone): "Well, you know, it's the Indianapolis 500, and boy I hate to admit it, but I guess it's what makes the race so exciting. We seem to dominate, and I think Target Chip Ganassi Racing and Honda did a fantastic job. It's disappointing we got a puncture and had to pit off-sequence. It's just tough. I had a very good car. It's very good in traffic. It was good all day long, and we didn't win. (Did the heat bother you?): "No, no we had a good car. It was very comfortable and very good in traffic, so it wasn't a problem. It was just incredibly disappointing to lose the race like that."

MAX PAPIS (#52 Cheever Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone): "We had an awesome race. We ran top 10 all race long. We were very unfortunate the last 50 laps. Al Unser Jr. lost debris from his car, and it went straight underneath my car, massive hole in the undertray. It was very hairy in the last five laps because I had the leader right in front of me, I hope I stayed out of the way and did the best job I could do to let the race unfold by itself."

DANICA PATRICK (#16 Rahal Letterman Racing Team Argent Panoz/Honda/Firestone): "All in all, I'm not mad that we're eighth. I am mad that we're eighth. I guess I'm mad that we're eighth because we were running further up than that, and I think that if fuel strategy had bit some other people like it bit me last year, we could have ended up fourth or fifth" (This seemed like a better race for you than last year.) "You're right, you're right. So I should be happy, right? Because I didn't stall, I didn't spin, I didn't do anything stupid. I got loose at (Turn) 1 because I got too low and got up on the curb and almost lost it. But that's all, that's all I did wrong today, so I should be happy with myself, but I guess I'm just frustrated with what could have happened. We did a great job, and it's nice to be up front a little bit." (That yellow really caught you out there.) "That's why I'm so mad because we were fifth, and then we pitted and we were down to eighth, then all of a sudden Sharp is behind me for position, and I thought, 'Dang it, cut me a break!' But I guess I used them all up last year." (About the day?) "We really did take this car that was 20th at some points during the month, put it 10th on the grid and finished eighth. We knew we were behind the 8-ball all month. We didn't have the fastest car, but we brought it home and we brought it home all right. We took a car that wasn't fast enough to be a winner, and we hustled it around the track and finished, and that's half the battle at Indy."

VITOR MEIRA (#4 Panther Dallara/Honda/Firestone): "I think it is as good as we could have done. I think the most important thing is that we took 100 percent of what we had now. It's another top 10 for a team that's only 3 months old. The engineer is a great engineer; he's new for us. I'm new to the car and Panther Racing, and Panther Racing is new to me. It's a lot to sort it out out. We only had three months. I think it's a good result for having these considerations." (Talk about all the work that goes into this race): "It's 16, 17 years of racing. For some, even 30 years of racing. That's how much work is in it. The '500,' even this year, it seems to get bigger and bigger as we go. This year was amazing. I got overwhelmed when we crossed the tunnel here and I saw the crowd and everybody cheering. It's a big deal, and it's really good to be here." (Were you aware of what was going on the last laps in regards to the lead changes?): "I had no idea. I was trying to hang onto my life, man."

TOWNSEND BELL (#90 Rock & Republic Dallara/Honda/Firestone): (About heat): "I felt great. I was surprised how quickly the race went. By the time we were at Lap 150, I was like, 'Man, that wasn't too hard.' Then we had a stupid pit stop problem where the guy sent me, and we weren't quite unplugged and ripped the fuel hose off. We had to do a drive-through penalty. I was coming to serve that. (Sam) Hornish was going to serve a drive-through (penalty) at the same time. We came together, and I braked a little too late. He was about middle of the track, so I went to the inside, but the cone at the sign was there. I didn't want to hit Sam, and I thought it would be a lot better to nick the cone. I hit the cone, and it bent my suspension. I couldn't believe that we bent our suspension on a rubber cone at 60 miles per hour. It was my mistake and such a stupid way to end. Overall, we had a good car. We showed we were quick, and it was pretty cool."

KOSUKE MATSUURA (#55 Panasonic ARTA Dallara/Honda/Firestone): "It was a really tough race. After 10 laps, my tires really lost grip, and the car was loose the whole race, 200 laps. I couldn't do anything." (How did you hold up through the heat?): "It was never an issue, my conditioning is fine and it held up through the race. Even right now I feel fine physically, I'm just so disappointed."

ED CARPENTER (#20 Vision Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone): "I'm happy. It was a hard day, really. The first pit stop, I some how hit the ignition switch to shut it off, and we lost some ground. The second pit, the car just went really loose. We had to come back in and pit early, and we lost more ground. Then we kind of battled back. We were on a good pit strategy. We had a top-10 finish, and then that last yellow took us out. We had to pit, and the other guys made it on fuel. We had a better than 11th-place car. This was a good day. It was a hard day, but it was better than the finish I had last year. With the heat, it was slick. You could see a lot of guys sliding around out there. It was the same for everybody. It was just one of those things that, toward the end of a run on tires, cars started to change. It wasn't that bad. The last few stints, my car was really good, but like I said, we got hung out on that last yellow and didn't have enough time to make it up."

SCOTT SHARP (#8 Delphi Dallara/Honda/Firestone): "It was a tough day out there for the Delphi team. We really felt, going into the race, that we had one of the best cars out there. In traffic, we worked out hard, and I was running right up behind guys all day long and I did that a lot in practice, so the only thing that changed is obviously the conditions. So with hot temperatures, hot track temperatures, high humidity, all that threw us off a bit. I was just incredibly tight, early on, behind guys so bad that I had to lift off big just to not wreck. With that lack of pace, I eventually went a lap down. We got the car better. We ended up being really quick at times and I ran right with the leaders, but when I was getting the leader, we'd still be pretty tight, so it seems we were maybe not adjusted enough for the conditions. The tires looked really good. I think we had a good mechanical package on the car, but some how we were just really tight all day. We didn't expect that and it was good to finish in the top 10, and we'll have to find out what we did wrong and get them next time."

TONY KANAAN (#11 Team 7-Eleven Dallara/Honda/Firestone): "It doesn't matter. Everybody is going to see who won, and it was Sam Hornish, so congratulations to him. For sure, inside myself, I am 100 percent comfortable I gave everything I could. Now, if it was just under my control, I probably would have won it today, but a lot of things need to fall in place together so we will try it again and again and again, and one day, we'll get it."

BUDDY LAZIER (#5 Dreyer & Reinbold Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone): "We had a good race car today, but unfortunately didn't finish the race in the style that we wanted. We had to conserve fuel at the end, and had just enough with the yellow to bring the car home. It's not the way you want to go racing, but that was the hand we were dealt. We were still marginal even with the yellow in making it to the end. We came back and topped off at Lap 160 (under yellow), and that was just enough. Owen (Snyder) came in and helped us tremendously in finding more speed and getting a little more out of it at the end of the month. Our guys have worked really hard, and I've been really focused because I knew we could pull together a strong effort here."


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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Al Unser Jr. , Chip Ganassi , Ed Carpenter , Sam Hornis
Teams Panther Racing , Chip Ganassi Racing , Dreyer & Reinbold Racing