Vitor Meira: No. 14 ABC Supply Dallara/Honda/Firestone * Vitor Meira on IZOD IndyCar Series new car for 2012: "I think it is great to have Dallara as a partner, I can speak directly about their safety, feedback and technology. I've been driving...
Vitor Meira: No. 14 ABC Supply Dallara/Honda/Firestone
* Vitor Meira on IZOD IndyCar Series new car for 2012: "I think it is great to have Dallara as a partner, I can speak directly about their safety, feedback and technology. I've been driving Dallaras since 1999 in Formula 3 so I'm glad this happened, I'm glad they're involved. I'm glad the concept is similar to what they issued in the press release. From what I hear and what I know, it's going in the right direction. I'm really excited--really exciting times for the IZOD IndyCar Series. I'm glad to be part of this historic time for t he series. Not only do we have the new engine coming out, we have the new car now, we have the Centennial Era for the Speedway. So it's really exciting times."
* A.J. Foyt on IndyCar Car Series new car for 2012: "I appreciate the fact that they are trying to cut costs because that is a problem in racing, the costs are way up and the purses are the same as they were 10 years ago. It's great to see IRL really working on bringing the prices down. It will be interesting to see how many manufacturers will build bodies for the Indycar Safety Cell."
* Team Director Larry Foyt on 2012 IndyCar Series race car: "From what I've seen, I like it. With all the factors that the ICONIC committee had to consider, they came up with the best solution with the right things in mind. Obviously safety's the most important and the Dallara car has been a very safe car. There have been some big accidents and guys have sustained minimal injuries from those big accidents so I think it was good to stick with Dallara there and I like the other manufacturers coming in which I think adds a lot to the series. I think it will be interesting to see what the other manufacturers come up with for the aero kits. I like it. I'm not a fan of a spec-looking car with everything looking the same so I think this approach will bring a different and more interesting look to the series. There will be a little more competition and that's good. The other big issue that we're facing these days is the budget so I'm glad they're addressing that."
* Vitor Meira will make his first visit to Toronto this weekend: "I have never been to Toronto--only Edmonton--but I've heard nice things about Toronto. I'm looking forward to seeing the city."
* Meira on adapting to a new course: "It's not the ideal situation because it's good to know where the bumps are, where the turns are, how hard you can push here or there. I choose to look at the good side which is I have enough experience in the Indy cars that I don't think it will take me long to get the track down to where we start understanding the car. Not only that, the track is on the shorter side, it's the shortest street course (lap times) that we have, so we're going to have a lot of practice time and we'll get a lot done in a shorter period of time. It makes it easier--a long track takes much longer to get down, a short track you can get memorized--not the track itself but what to do every corner-- pretty easily."
* Meira on practice sessions: "It is better to have the practice session broken up into three one-hour sessions over two days the way they have it now because we can sit down and go through what needs to be done between each session. And myself, I can go through the data and think about what to do the next session so it's definitely better to have it broken down--not only during the day but to the next day as well. And a street course changes a lot so you have to know in advance how things are going to be. A street course changes a lot because it doesn't have any rubber at all on the surface, so the more the cars run, the more rubber it gets. It gets grippier and faster. You need to change the car accordingly because if you have a good car with the track not rubbered, that car will not be a good car in qualifying when the track is rubbered. Normally the more rubbered the track gets, the more push you get, so you have to counteract that."
* Last year Ryan Hunter-Reay subbed for Meira who was still recovering from his injuries at Indy. In the IZOD IndyCar Series' first visit to the street circuit, Hunter-Reay started 12th and finished seventh. A former CART and Champ Car racer, Hunter-Reay had raced at the circuit three times prior to last year. The Foyt team's best finish in Toronto during its run in the CART Series was sixth with Robby Gordon in 1993.
* Meira is currently 13th in the IZOD IndyCar Series standings. His best finish to date -- 3rd -- came in the streets of Sao Paulo, Brazil while his best start is 6th which he earned at Kansas.