IRL: Kentucky: Post-race quotes

SCOTT SHARP (No. 8 Delphi Dallara/Chevrolet/Firestone): "We came in this morning with our heads down, and we kept working. We were quick this morning, and my team's been great all day. I just said to the big man upstairs, 'Whatever your will, I'm...

SCOTT SHARP (No. 8 Delphi Dallara/Chevrolet/Firestone): "We came in this morning with our heads down, and we kept working. We were quick this morning, and my team's been great all day. I just said to the big man upstairs, 'Whatever your will, I'm just going to push hard all day.' It came well for us. We couldn't get our fuel-trip position right, and I ran a few laps really lean because I was in the right spot, but it was jumping all over the place. And then my weightjacker broke. I couldn't adjust the car. It was a little tight. The run before was better for us, but we'll take it coming from 21st. We needed the points. We needed a good kick in the arm. The guys have been working hard. It just hasn't been going our way. Maybe this is the start of a good finish. I can't say enough about my guys. They just did a fabulous job. It's one of those days where, after yesterday, heads were low, and I was low and really screwed up in qualifying. We should have pitted and didn't, then hung in there all day. The car was good."

AL UNSER JR. (No. 7 Corteco/Bryant Dallara/Chevrolet/Firestone): "We had a terrific car all day. I'm a little disappointed with the fact that Eliseo (Salazar) tried to hit me, but we just go forward from here. My team did a great job. I can't thank everyone at Kelley Racing and Corteco/Bryant enough. It was a great day for the No. 7 car."

WILL LANGHORNE (No. 55 Grill 2 Go/Sam Schmidt Motorsports Indy Car Dallara/Chevrolet/Firestone): "We met our objectives today. We raced green to checkered and stayed in the lead lap for most of the race. The car got loose toward the end of the race, but I got some valuable seat time. It's never easy entering a new series, especially midseason, but Grill 2 Go and Sam Schmidt gave us an opportunity, and the Treadway-Hubbard crew really got a lot out of the car. We're looking forward to Chicago and Texas."

TONY RENNA (No. 78 Kruse Special Dallara/Chevrolet/Firestone): "First of all, I'm thinking of Bernie Hallinsky and Rusty Hurford now and my crew. It was a long race for me, but it was another top-10 finish, with a solid seventh-place finish."

ELISEO SALAZAR (No. 11 A.J Foyt Racing/Harrah's Dallara/Chevrolet/Firestone): "We were up to top 10. We got greedy on the last restart. We were fighting with (Eddie) Cheever, and I got sideways. It was the biggest save of my career. We slipped back the 14th, then we lost two laps because we pitted, and then the yellow came out. The car was good, not brilliant, but we were looking at a top 10."

EDDIE CHEEVER JR. (No. 51 Red Bull Cheever Racing Dallara/Infiniti/Firestone): "I had a very difficult car for the first 80 miles. It changed very little. We thought we had a cut tire and came in for our final pit stop eight laps early. Then the yellow came out, and that really messed us up for that last run. This is a hard track for us. We had three completely different setups, and both the other Red Bull cars had problems. Tomas (Scheckter) had a blistered tire and crashed while Buddy (Rice) cut one. We go away from here with another broken car. I am glad Tomas is OK and that Buddy made it to the end of the race."

BUDDY RICE (No. 53 Red Bull Cheever Racing Dallara/Infiniti/Firestone): "We had a pretty decent car. Then we got a puncture and that big slide. That put us a lot further behind than we wanted to be. We were trying to stay right there out of the top five until the end and then make a charge. The puncture put us too far back. It was too hard to charge through everybody. Other than that, I think we had a good car. We'll see what happens for the next race."

LAURENT REDON (No. 34 Mi-Jack Dallara/Infiniti/Firestone): "We had a pretty good car, then we started to have problems with the rear-wheel bearing. The rear-right tire wasn't fixed right, and that created problems with the wheel bearing. This is one of the nicest facilities I've seen here in America. I can't wait to come back."

BILLY BOAT (No. 98 CURB Records Dallara/Infiniti/Firestone): "We had a great race car. We led the race. We were in the hunt. Of course, then we cut a tire down, blew that tire out and were lucky to recover. Unfortunately, after that, we lost fifth and sixth gear in our transmission, and we weren't able to compete at that point. The guys did a great job in the pits. We're getting better every week. In the first pit stop, we came in third and went out leading the race. We're going to continue to work hard. We've got a good team, a great group of guys. We just need to get a little bit of luck, and the only way you get that is to keep showing up every week. We'll go to St. Louis and look for better finishes."

JEFF WARD (No. 9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing G Force/Chevrolet/Firestone): "It was a long day. We had a decent car, but had tire blister problems. We came in early in the first pit stop and got a lap down, and then the yellow came out, so that killed us. Cautions hurt us all day."

GEORGE MACK (No. 31 310 Racing G Force/Chevrolet/Firestone): "The track changed a lot. You never really know what to expect. Every few laps, it's different. Some laps it was greasy, some laps it wasn't. The wind was a factor sometimes, sometimes it wasn't. I fought the car the whole race. The Speedway motor ran well, very consistent, didn't have any engine problems. Just didn't have a fast car today. All the drivers did a great job mixing it up, keeping it clean."

GIL de FERRAN (No. 6 Marlboro Team Penske Dallara/Chevrolet/Firestone): "The Marlboro Team Penske car was good at the start. However, as the race went on, we built up some understeer as the left-front tire became blistered. I was dropping back in the field when the No. 20 car came by me on the outside. My right-front tire touched his left-rear tire, and it broke my right-front top wishbone. I came into the pits, and we repaired the suspension. Unfortunately, we didn't have time to go to the setup pad, so the car wasn't particularly well balanced after that. We spent the rest of the day biding our time so we could run as many laps as possible in order to earn points in the championship. As far as the championship is concerned, we're on the up and up. We've been racing well at each track we've been to, and it just wasn't our day today. Overall, the points race is still wide open, and it looks like it'll go right down to the final lap in Texas."

HELIO CASTRONEVES (No. 3 Marlboro Team Penske Dallara/Chevrolet/Firestone): "It was a tough day, but we learned a lot out there. Kentucky is one circuit where it looks like some of the other tracks we run on, but it is definitely unique. The Marlboro Team Penske crew did a great job on pit stops today, which helped us gain valuable track position. At the beginning of the race, the car wasn't consistent, so we made changes during the first two pit stops, which improved the handling. My third stint was the best the car was all day. At the end of the race, the car picked up understeer, but we were able to hang on and finish fifth, which is good for the championship. The points race is getting tighter and tighter. It looks more like the championship is going to come down to four of us; me, my teammate, Gil (de Ferran), Sam (Hornish) and Felipe (Giaffone). It will probably be decided on the last lap of the last race in Texas, which should be very exciting."

VITOR MEIRA (No. 2 Menards/Johns Manville/Pittsburgh Paints Dallara/Chevrolet/ Firestone): "I'm just proud to finish and to be with this team, really proud. To get here to the IRL and to run with all those hot dogs like Buddy Lazier, Helio Castroneves, all of them, it's very special. I still have a lot to learn yet, but I'm so happy to be here. The car was just great. I had a little problem of pushing early in the race, but we fixed that, and I was going very good. Unfortunately, we were a little unlucky with a pit stop just before a yellow. We were running I think in ninth at the time. Overall, I'm very pleased. It was a good day for me to learn and understand this racing and these cars."

ROBBIE BUHL (No. 24 Team Purex/Aventis/Dreyer & Reinbold Racing G Force/ Infiniti/Firestone): "We finished. With both of us in the top 10, hopefully this gives us the momentum shift that we've been looking for. We know we can win races. Now we just have to prove it."

SARAH FISHER (No. 23 Team Smart Blade/Dreyer & Reinbold Racing G Force/Infiniti/ Firestone): "I found something out today: leading a race without passing cars gets boring. Your vision gets blurry, and there isn't a lot of excitement when there is no passing going on. We maintained our lead from the start until the first stop, which was slow and put us back a bit. The car was pushing from the beginning, and we kept tuning it until the last stop when I asked for one more half-turn of front wing, which made us loose. I had a great time racing today, especially with Alex Barron. We passed each other back and forth several times and then battled it out for a long stint. I got some more good racing laps in today and some more good experience."

TOMAS SCHECKTER (No. 52 Red Bull Cheever Racing Dallara/Infiniti/Firestone): "My right-rear tire went. I didn't know. It just felt a little bit laggy, and I called in thinking it was an engine problem. (Airton) Dare called it in before the accident, but unfortunately I didn't get the message in time. Another Kansas run, I suppose. The car was good for the race. It was unfortunate. It is something we need to sort out."

-irl-

Be part of something big

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Buddy Lazier , Helio Castroneves , Alex Barron , Sam Schmidt , Chip Ganassi
Teams Team Penske , Chip Ganassi Racing , Dreyer & Reinbold Racing