Kanaan Brings Team 7-Eleven Car Home in Third Place at Bridgestone Indy Japan 300 MOTEGI, Japan (April 22, 2006) - Team 7-Eleven driver Tony Kanaan overcame what looked to be a race-altering pit stop to battle back and take a much-deserved ...
Kanaan Brings Team 7-Eleven Car Home in Third Place at Bridgestone Indy Japan 300
MOTEGI, Japan (April 22, 2006) - Team 7-Eleven driver Tony Kanaan overcame what looked to be a race-altering pit stop to battle back and take a much-deserved third-place finish at the Indy Racing League® IndyCar® Series Bridgestone Indy Japan 300 Saturday afternoon.
Starting from fifth place, Kanaan kept the #11 Team 7-Eleven Dallara/Honda/Firestone among the top-three throughout the initial 110 laps of the race. Fate intervened on lap 126 when Kanaan was forced to make a green flag pit stop to make a precautionary tire change, dropping him into 13th place, two laps off the lead. From that point on the Team 7-Eleven car was one of the quickest cars on the track. That, combined with opportune caution periods, allowed Kanaan to rejoin those on the lead lap and move into third place.
Helio Castroneves earned his second-consecutive victory of the season with Dan Wheldon second, Sam Hornish Jr. fourth and Buddy Rice fifth.
Through three events, Kanaan stands fifth in the driver point standings with 89 points, three behind fourth-place Scott Dixon and just five points shy of Sam Hornish Jr. in third place.
Next up for Kanaan and the entire IndyCar Series is the 90th running of the Indianapolis 500 on Sunday, May 28. The event will be televised live by ABC Sports, beginning at 1 p.m. (EDT). It can also be heard live by XM Satellite Radio subscribers by tuning into Extreme XM, channel 145.
Tony Kanaan, #11 Team 7-Eleven Dallara/Honda/Firestone:
"I can't say it was a bad day finishing third, but it was a tough day. The team radioed that I might be losing air pressure in one of the rear tires and they asked how the car felt. I told them the car felt fine, but my head was beginning to get concerned, so we made the pit stop just to be safe. The Team 7-Eleven car was fast, but I don't know if we could have caught Helio, or not. We'll take our third here and maybe we can win the next one."
Kim Green, President, Andretti Green Racing:
"I think Team 7-Eleven had a good car today, but we're not happy unless it's a winning car. It wasn't quite the normal package we think we should be able to get on this team, so we'll keep working at it. We had a slow puncture at one point and had to come in and make an extra pit stop and that hurt a little bit. Tony did a great job getting back to the front and we had great pit stops from everybody. We'll take this third and hopefully take a 'first' at the next one."