"One thing I learned tonight is that night racing is really difficult for me. I'm really having a tough time acclimating myself. But that by no means was my major problem this evening. At the start of the race the car was handling really well,...
"One thing I learned tonight is that night racing is really difficult for me. I'm really having a tough time acclimating myself. But that by no means was my major problem this evening. At the start of the race the car was handling really well, but as the race went on it just kept on getting looser and looser. We worked on it during each pit stop and tried to improve the handling. With about 90 laps to go, my Marlboro Team Penske crew did a fantastic job in the pits and I was able to get out first and then take the lead when the #34 car (Rendon) went in to pit. There were a couple of yellows after that and I was doing OK,but when it went green for the final time (on lap 196) my car was so loose that I was struggling just to keep it on the track. I had a few really big moments out there -- pretty much in every area of the circuit. Sam (Hornish) was strong off of four and he had a good run going with two laps to go. At that point, there was nothing I could do short of throwing him into the grass, but I consider myself a fair guy and a professional athlete and that is certainly nothing I would do. It was sad to lose the race in the last two laps but Sam did a great job and we'll take second. We were able to tighten up the points race (de Ferran is three points behind teammate and Series leader Castroneves) and now we're focused on Kansas."
-- Gil de Ferran, 2000 & 2001 National Champion
-- #6 Marlboro Team Penske Dallara/Chevrolet
-- 2nd place finish; most laps led (168 of 225)
-- 2nd place in the IRL point standing (277)
"It was a tough night for the #3 Marlboro Team Penske crew. I was taking it easy at the beginning of the race trying to keep up with Gil (de Ferran). I saw traffic ahead and thought I might have a chance to pass him but I wasn't pushing too hard. The car had a little understeer and wiggle coming out of turn two but nothing too bad. I thought all was under control, but I guess not, because all of the sudden I was coming out of turn two backwards and ended up making contact with the inside wall (lap 8). It was a little weird actually because I really don't know what happened. The Team did a fantastic job putting the car together and getting me back out in the race. They had to take the entire rear end from the spare car; they had to change the right front suspension; the front wing; and the underwing. It is a real testament to the Team that they could make all of the changes and we were able to run competitively and safely at the end of the race. It's quite a relief that we were able to score valuable points and maintain the lead in the Championship (Castroneves has 280 points; three points ahead of de Ferran). Now we need to come back strong in Kansas."
-- Helio Castroneves, 2001 and 2002 Indianapolis 500 Winner
-- #3 Marlboro Team Penske Dallara/Chevrolet
-- Finished 17th
-- First place in the Championship point standings with 280 points