RAHAL LETTERMAN RACING CARRIES LATE-RACE MOTEGI SPEED TO KANSAS OVAL HILLIARD, Ohio - Rahal Letterman Racing and driver Ryan Hunter-Reay ( ...
RAHAL LETTERMAN RACING CARRIES LATE-RACE MOTEGI SPEED TO KANSAS OVAL
HILLIARD, Ohio - Rahal Letterman Racing and driver Ryan Hunter-Reay (#17 Ethanol Dallara/Honda/Firestone) had the fastest car on track at the end of last week's IndyCar Series event at Twin Ring Motegi, and the Floridian stood on the gas to climb to seventh place despite a late-race stop for fuel.
The strong result has the team eagerly anticipating this weekend's trip to Kansas Speedway, where RLR and RHR look forward to bettering the seventh-place runs that they have had on the season's first two ovals (Motegi and Homestead).
"We have raced very well at both Homestead and Motegi, actually stronger than our results, so I am really looking forward to the superspeedway at Kansas where we can continue to build on some of the things we made progress on at Motegi," said Hunter-Reay. "This is another new track for me, but as we have shown week in and week out, we have been very competitive everywhere we go. Despite having never seen the Motegi track, and practice being reduced to a single day, we were as fast as the leaders for much of the race and ran as high as fourth towards the end of the race. "
Kansas Speedway would seem to be the perfect launching point for a Rahal Letterman Racing climb up the standings as the team has had a great deal of success on the blindingly-fast D-shaped oval. The squad stormed the starting grid in 2005 when Danica Patrick led a RLR qualifying sweep that netted the Ohio-based team the first three spots on the grid. Just one year earlier, Buddy Rice dominated the event, leading 83 laps from pole to win the race, outracing teammate Vitor Meira to the line in the second-closest finish in series history.
The race is also a very important one off the track for Hunter-Reay and Rahal Letterman Racing as the region is home to a number of Ethanol producers and corn growers. The IndyCar Series' exclusive fuel supplier, LifeLine Foods, is located in nearby St. Joseph, Missouri and the race-weekend crowd will feature a great number of fans that are there to see the blue-and-green Ethanol machine run for the win.
"The Kansas race is also a highlight on the schedule for me as it is one of a few 'home' races for Team Ethanol," told Hunter-Reay. "There will be lots of fans this weekend wearing our colors and I know everyone here at Rahal Letterman Racing appreciates that strong support. We are really fighting hard to give Ethanol the results they deserve and hopefully this will be a great weekend for us."
Hunter-Reay is currently tied with Marco Andretti for 12th in the IndyCar Series point standings after three races, but is just nine points out of seventh.
The RoadRunner Turbo 300 takes place Sunday afternoon, April 27 and can be seen live on ESPN2, beginning at 5:00 p.m. Eastern Time. Qualifying takes place Saturday at 3:10 p.m. Eastern Time and can be followed live on www.indycar.com