Vitor Meira: ABC Supply No. 14 Dallara/Honda/Firestone * Vitor Meira on the key to Kentucky: "The car needs to be good in traffic but most of all it needs to be good over the bumps. The track surface at Kentucky keeps changing every year and new...
Vitor Meira: ABC Supply No. 14 Dallara/Honda/Firestone
* Vitor Meira on the key to Kentucky: "The car needs to be good in traffic but most of all it needs to be good over the bumps. The track surface at Kentucky keeps changing every year and new bumps appear. They fix it, they shave it, but still new bumps appear--it is a very 'live' track. A setup that was good last year doesn't mean it will be good for sure this year because it might be bumpy or it might not--it depends on how much work they've done on the track. It's a track that keeps changing every year and we have to make sure the car is good over the bumps."
* Meira made his IndyCar debut at Kentucky in 2002. He remembers: "I have very, very good memories of Kentucky. It was my first oval track race. The learning curve was just so steep and I had so much to learn. It was the first time I raced on an oval, the first time I did pit stops, my first time for wheel-to-wheel racing, so I had a lot to learn. We had 25 cars and I ended up finishing 13th which was good and the reason is, I learned a lot. I remembered in the last 50 laps passing Raul Boesel! I used to watch him when I was in go karts and he was in Formula 1 and Indy cars so it was a cool feeling and from that point on, things took off." [For the record, Boesel passed Meira back as Boesel finished 11th that day].
* The IZOD IndyCar Series will run its 200th race this weekend. Meira on the changes he's witnessed: "I've seen so many changes and most of the changes are for the better. We saw cars with self-manufactured engines, instead of having factories involved, each team would do their own engines. We saw very different cars and very close racing. Then the racing stretched out and it wasn't as close anymore. It went from just ovals to street and road courses, and now at least half the series is street and road courses so it changed a lot. But what changed the most is what is making IndyCar what it is today: the level of competition. Before on an oval, we would have 25 cars but the field would be within two seconds or so and cars would be lapped right and left. That doesn't happen anymore. The competitiveness is so big and it's so professional out there that I think that is the greatest change in IndyCar since I started. I feel we're gaining sponsorships, crowds and momentum in a tough economy, so as long as we keep doing what we're doing when the economy gets better, we'll have a bright future."