Thoughts on Richmond with TCGR Managing Director Mike Hull: "Richmond represents IndyCar short track, Saturday night racing for a very large and loyal fan base. Just like Texas earlier this year, racing under the lights is beyond description.
Thoughts on Richmond with TCGR Managing Director Mike Hull: "Richmond represents IndyCar short track, Saturday night racing for a very large and loyal fan base. Just like Texas earlier this year, racing under the lights is beyond description. Although Versus does a good job to capture it, if you ever have the opportunity, first person makes it worth the trip. It's very gratifying to get the set up right for a place like Richmond, and TCGR has been on both sides which simply means that when you're good as a team, it doesn't get any better. When you're off, it's a long night, so we'd prefer for Dario and Scott to be well engaged right from the start. It's tough due to the fact that we practice during the day, and race as the lights are engaged. A tip to how quickly the track will change is the twilight qualifying session, as you can easily see through the sixty-five minutes how much the track changes from the first driver to the last one. Depending upon the draw, speed is enhanced to the end and that's why Richmond's grid is more mixed than most. The race downforce level that's chosen is critical. The grip level changes over two hours more at Richmond from start to finish than any other short track or night race that we do, so our guys spend an enormous amount of time together as a team to compare the 9 and 10 cars, and then use the information to pick the starting set-up for the race. It's fun, and exciting with great satisfaction to be there at the end."
CGR Double: Last weekend the team won two races in the same weekend: Dario Franchitti at Iowa Speedway and Scott Pruett/Memo Rojas at Mid-Ohio in the Grand-Am race. In total, Chip Ganassi Racing Teams, Inc. has 109 race wins over open wheel, stock car and sports car racing (1990-Present).
Scott Dixon and the No. 9 Target Team
RIR Rewind: Last year at RIR, Dixon and Dan Wheldon started fourth and sixth and survived 102 caution laps to finish third and fourth, respectively in the 300-lap SunTrust Indy Challenge at Richmond. Dixon's podium finish for the No.9 team was the seventh consecutive top-five finish and eighth top-five finish of the season. Wheldon had a strong run but an electrical gremlin shut down the No.10 Target car on the final lap as he coasted to the finish line.
Former RIR Winner: Dixon won the 2003 event at RIR from pole en route to his first IRL champiosnhip. The race was shortened to 206 laps due to rain, with Dixon leading all 206 laps of the event.
Points: 3rd in points with 226, -15 to leader Ryan Briscoe.
Dario Franchitti and the No. 10 Target Team
Former RIR Winner: Franchitti led 242 of the 250 laps to win the 2007 RIR race. He won that race from pole driving for Andretti Green Racing, and finished with the two Target cars in tow (second-Dixon and third -Wheldon). Franchitti was also the points leader following the 2007 race (+65) over Dixon.
Points: 2nd in points with 238, -3 to leader Ryan Briscoe.
Honda's Best: Last weekend's win at Iowa was the 20th for Franchitti in North American open-wheel racing, 10 each in IndyCar and CART competition, and all with Honda power. Dario continues to be Honda's most successful driver in Indy-style racing, with former TCGR driver Alex Zanardi next on the Honda all-time list with 15 victories.