Jakes and Rahal Finish 17th and 18th Respectively in Race 2 of the Shell and Pennzoil Grand Prix of Houston

Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing

Shell and Pennzoil Grand Prix of Houston – Reliant Park, Houston

IZOD IndyCar Series

RACENOTES/QUOTES – October 6, 2013



GRAHAM RAHAL, No. 15 blu eCigs Dallara/Honda/Firestone:  “On the first lap we got hit by Simona and that pretty much set the tone for the rest of the day.  It was going to be very hard to get a lap back on this track and unfor­tu­nately I spun and hurt the rear wing a little later. It’s a shame because the car was really, really fast. I’m not sure we had a 59.5 lap like some of the leaders — I haven’t seen their times — but we certainly could have run the 59’s. It’s a shame because the car was very good. I think if we had been up front, we prob­ably could have stayed there but unfor­tu­nately this is what we get for being where we are in the cham­pi­onship. But most of all, I hope Dario and all those guys are okay because that (crash) was scary.”

  • FAST FACTS: Qual­i­fying for Race 2 was cancelled this morning due to standing water on the course so the field was set by Entrant Points and Graham started the race 19th. It was his third Indy car race here and fourth overall.  Rahal was hit on the opening lap by Simona de Silve­stro who was penal­ized for “avoid­able contact” and had to pit for a new nose which put him a lap down. Later he had to pit for a new rear wing which dropped him another lap down. He finished in 18th place. His first Indy car race here was Round 3 of the Champ Car World Series on April 22, 2007 and he became the youngest driver to earn a Champ Car podium with his second place finish at the age of 18 years, 3 months and 18 days.  Rahal skipped his prom to compete in Houston and qual­i­fied sixth. His second place brought Newman/Haas/Lanigan Racing their first 1 – 2 finish since the 2005 Las   Vegas race with team­mate Bour­dais earning the win from a second place start.  He also competed in the 2006 Atlantics race where he started third and was in second place when he collided with Raphael Matos while attempting to take the lead with three laps to go and finished 15th… His best finish this season is second place in Long Beach and best start is 6th at Iowa… Rahal is ranked 17th in the point stand­ings with 304 points.

JAMES JAKES, No. 16 Acorn Stair­lifts Dallara/Honda/Firestone:  “It was a tough after­noon. We got up to fourth place but we strug­gled with the car all after­noon. We had to pit anyway and Bour­dais kind of lunged so I gave him the room and we lost a couple of spots there then we had to pit. After that, later we made the call to pit because the caution came out and the guys weren’t ready. I don’t think it was there fault but we lost a lap and that was that. It’s frus­trating but we will move on to Fontana.”

  • FAST FACTS: Qual­i­fying for Race 2 was cancelled this morning due to standing water on the course so the field was set by Entrant Points and James started the race 20th.  Once the race started, Jakes moved up as high as fourth but the timing of a stop under caution dropped him a lap down and he ulti­mately finished 17th.  In 31 Indy car starts with Dale Coyne Racing from 2011 – 2012, his best finish was eighth at Toronto and series-best start of eighth was at Motegi… His best start to date this season is 2nd at Detroit Dual 2 and best finish is also 2nd in Detroit’s Dual 2 … Jakes is ranked 19th in the point stand­ings with 285 points.

NEXT UP:  The series will take next weekend off and recon­vene for the MAV TV 500 at Auto Club Speedway October 19.  RLL has earned one win (Vasser 2002), four podiums and led 400 laps at the track.  Last year, Rahal qual­i­fied 11thwith Service Central Chip Ganassi Racing, started 18th after grid penal­ties were assessed and finished sixth. Jakes qual­i­fied 24th, started 12th after grid penal­ties were assessed and finished 12th with Dale Coyne Racing.

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