Matsuura Finishes Ninth in Solid Run at Richmond Kosuke Matsuura claimed his career best short-oval finish to date with a ninth-place result in the SunTrust Indy Challenge at Richmond International Raceway. Matsuura started 11th on the .75-mile...
Matsuura Finishes Ninth in Solid Run at Richmond
Kosuke Matsuura claimed his career best short-oval finish to date with a ninth-place result in the SunTrust Indy Challenge at Richmond International Raceway. Matsuura started 11th on the .75-mile bullring, and drove a solid race while battling a car that was good on its own but loose in traffic. This was Matsuura's fourth top-10 finish of the season.
Kosuke Matsuura, #55 Panasonic ARTA Panoz/Honda/Firestone:
"First of all, I was really happy to finish this race. This track is really tough. Tony Kanaan, Sam Hornish -- some of the top drivers -- crashed in this race. This was my first time to work with John Ward [race engineer]. I was pretty happy to work with him. He gave me a lot of motivation during the race. I had a couple of close calls on track, but we finished in the top 10 in ninth place and just one lap behind the leader. The next race at Kansas is my favorite track. I think we will have a good car there and I am looking forward to next weekend."
KOSUKE MATSUURA FAST FACTS: This was his second start at Richmond and 23rd IndyCar Series career start-- has made six career short-oval starts -- recorded his best finish to date of seventh in the last event at Texas-- claimed best starting position to date this season of seventh in St. Petersburg-- is in his second season of IndyCar Series competition-- earned 2004 Bombardier Rookie of the Year honors-- named 2004 Bank One Rookie of the Year at the Indianapolis 500-- recorded his IndyCar Series career-best finish of fourth at Kentucky Speedway last season, and claimed his career-best starting position of second at Michigan-- 25 years old from Aichi, Japan-- finished third in the 2003 Formula Renault V6 Eurocup Championship with three wins and eight podiums-- finished second in German F3 competition in 2002 with two wins and six pole positions-- won the 2000 Japanese Formula Dream Championship with six wins and eight pole positions-- currently resides in Indianapolis, Indiana.
Adrian Fernandez, Co-Owner:
"For me tonight, I was trying to see the driver's perspective. I was not trying to call the race. John [Ward], Simon [Hodgson, team manager] and the guys are more experienced in that. I was trying to give my point of view for Kosuke. At the beginning, we were losing too many positions on the restarts because Kosuke was not comfortable with the car. We made changes and it was better, but I don't think we had the car for him to be more competitive. It was a tough race, but I think Kosuke drove smart. He kept it cool and kept it on the track."