IPS: Texas: Race day notebook

FORT WORTH, Texas, Saturday, Oct. 11, 2003 - Thiago Medeiros won his first Menards Infiniti Pro Series race. The margin of victory was .0694 of a second, the fourth-closest finish in Menards Infiniti Pro Series history. The closest was .0170 in...

FORT WORTH, Texas, Saturday, Oct. 11, 2003 - Thiago Medeiros won his first Menards Infiniti Pro Series race.

The margin of victory was .0694 of a second, the fourth-closest finish in Menards Infiniti Pro Series history. The closest was .0170 in Sept. 2003 at Chicagoland when Mark Taylor defeated Ed Carpenter.


ARIE LUYENDYK JR. (No. 5 Dallara/Infiniti/Firestone):

"The car was great. I think on the last restart, it was to my disadvantage that I got such a good restart because they had time to catch up to me in the draft. Going down the backstretch, (Mark) Taylor was looking high, but I thought I still had room. Obviously, I wasn't clear, so it was my fault. It's a good thing he'd already wrapped up the championship so I didn't mess up his year. It's just a shame we couldn't have finished up front."

MARK TAYLOR (No. 4 Fulmar Panther Dallara/Infiniti/Firestone):

"It was exciting out there. We had a good car. The problem is that you just can't get past the car in front of you. The restart is a prime time to get past people, so I had a run on Arie and tried to get past on the outside. I just went on the outside to see if I could get past him. He just seemed to turn right, and I was where he wanted to be. We touched, it turned him around and you saw what happened. It's just a racing thing. Luckily, I've wrapped up the championship. It was an enjoyable race to that point. Things like that just happen."

ED CARPENTER (No. 14 Futaba/Delphi/A.J. Foyt Racing Dallara/Infiniti/Firestone):

"We started third and finished fourth. I was hoping for a better day. It was a disappointing race. It was pretty dangerous out there. A lot of people don't realize that the type of track we are racing on, you've got to hold your line. That's what happened with Arie (Luyendyk Jr.) and Mark Taylor. We're lucky that there was only one of those types of crashes in the race. People need to watch this race and take some lessons from it."

DANE CARTER (No. 41 Panther Racing Dallara/Infiniti/Firestone):

"We did pretty good. We stayed out of trouble. I was a little more hesitant at times when I shouldn't have been. But I was getting use to a new car and a new type of racing and new guys I'm racing with. I had a great time. I can't thank Panther Racing enough."

AARON FIKE (No. 91 RFMS/Hemelgarn Racing Dallara/Infiniti/Firestone):

"Well, I am a little mad right now. It's a little frustrating, that's all. I tried to pass on the outside. I had my teammate pushing me, and I don't know, it is, what it is."

JEFF SIMMONS (No. 20 Western Union Speed Team Dallara/Infiniti/Firestone):

"It was a great race. I'm really proud of everybody on the Western Union Speed Team, because we were really struggling for the first day and they stayed here until 11 o'clock last night changing stuff on the car to get us a good race car. We had a very good race car, a car that was capable of winning if things felt right for us. We definitely had a say in who won; we pushed the winner by. We fought back from 11th to make sure that we finished second in the points, too. We're really happy for everybody."

CORY WITHERILL (No. 92 WSA Healthcare Dallara/Infiniti/Firestone):

"We had a good car when we first started out. We were fastest two out of the three practice sessions. I definitely thought that we had a car to win, both myself and my teammate. I just kind of had to work from the back. He (Aaron Fike) started from the front row and was actually leading the race. Finally, I made my way up behind him. I guess he just started dicing with someone else, that kind of slowed him down and gave Thiago (Medeiros) the lead and Aaron kind of fell back from there. I kept on saying to myself that I wanted to wait until the last few laps. I was behind Aaron and I knew I had a faster car than him, but I didn't want to pull out too early. I kind of wish I had because I wouldn't have been held up or Thiago wouldn't have been able to get around us. The Hemelgarn-Johnson team and my whole crew did a great job the whole year. It's good to finish off on the podium with a third."

THIAGO MEDEIROS (No. 36 Genoa Racing Dallara/Infiniti/Firestone):

"It's almost a Christmas present. I'm very happy with the result. I have to say thanks to the crew, Genoa; Thomas Knapp my engineer, Angelo Ferro the team owner, my spotter John Martin, he gave me a lot of help. We just were trying to find a partner to run higher, because it's very hard to find a good car to overtake somebody if you have too much drag in the car, and that's what we were trying to do. I had a very good car. I could run high and low and everywhere I want."


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About this article
Series Indy Lights
Drivers Mark Taylor , Aaron Fike , John Martin , A.J. Foyt , Ed Carpenter , Thiago Medeiros
Teams Panther Racing