Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing
Chevrolet Dual in Detroit – Dual 1
Verizon IndyCar Series
RACE NOTES/QUOTES – May 31, 2014
RAHAL LED 10 LAPS AND CHALLENGED EVENTUAL WINNER POWER FOR THE VICTORY IN RACE 1 OF THE CHEVROLET INDY DUAL IN DETROIT AND FINISHED SECOND
GRAHAM RAHAL, No. 15 National Guard Dallara/Honda/Firestone: “I thought I was going to finally get the monkey off my back today. I knew I had a car that was as quick as him (Will Power). I knew I had one opportunity and that was on the restart and he blocked me, which I would have done too, so I don’t blame him. On the last run we put on a charge, we caught him and then started to fade a little bit. I wasn’t sure what was going on but then all of a sudden it came to us and this National Guard car went right to the front. I’ve got to tell you, these National Guard guys did a phenomenal job. I said after Indy that this team was made up of champions and that it was going to come in time. Where were going to win one, we’re going to do it I can promise you that. One of these days we’re going to get that monkey off of our backs. I was focused on the task at hand and I knew I was one of the few guys who could drive by a lot of people today. So when I saw myself in 13th place after a bad run on the reds, I thought ‘This isn’t over. I can still pass these guys.’ And sure enough we went to the front. This is where our season started, right here today.”
- FAST FACTS: He started his fifth race here from ninth place, led 10 laps and earned his best finish of the season of second place to Will Power in Dual 1 in Detroit… He qualified 14th for Dual 1 in Detroit in 2013 but started 23rd due to an unapproved engine change at Indy. He gained three spots on the opening lap and another two on the first restart on Lap 4. The team elected for an alternate strategy and the timing of the caution flags worked in the team’s favor and Rahal was able to climb 14 spots to finish ninth. He qualified 15th for Dual 2 in Detroit and finished ninth… In 2012, he qualified seventh with Service Central Chip Ganassi Racing but had a 10-grid penalty for an unapproved engine change and started 17th. He was eighth when he made his final stop on Lap 45/60 but during the red flag stop to repair the track, a clutch problem surfaced and he was unable to continue and retired in 19thplace. In 2008 he drove for Newman/Haas/Lanigan Racing and progressed to the Firestone Fast Six in qualifying for the first time in his series career and qualified sixth. The team chose the same pit strategy as then race leader Dixon which almost worked but a late race fourth caution botched the plan and he had to stop for a splash of fuel with three laps to go and dropped to 13th.
1 WIN, 2 FRONT ROW STARTS & 4 PODIUMS ON BELLE ISLE FOR RLL RACING: The 2014 entry will mark the 15th year for the team in the event as well as the 16th and 17th races. The team’s highest start of second place and highest finish of first in the event came in the inaugural running on Belle Isle in 1992 by Bobby Rahal. The team also started second in 2013 with James Jakes (Dual 2). In total, the team has earned FOUR podiums (Graham Rahal 2014, James Jakes 2013, Max Papis 2000 – 2nd), four top-five finishes and 12 top-10’s here (chart on back page). Prior to 2014, the team prepared a total of 23 entries for drivers such as Bobby Rahal (1992 – 1998), Mike Groff (1993 – 94), Raul Boesel (1995), Bryan Herta (1996 – 99), Max Papis (1999 – 2001), Kenny Brack (2000 – 01), Ryan Hunter-Reay (2007 – 08), Takuma Sato (2012) Graham Rahal (2013) and James Jakes (2013). The No. 15 National Guard entry for Graham Rahal will bring that total to 24 in2014.
NEXT UP: Qualifying for Dual 2 will take place tomorrow morning from 10:00 – 10:30 a.m. ET. Timing and Scoring information is available for all sessions from www.indycar.com. The Chevrolet Dual in Detroit – Race 2 — will air on ABC on Sunday at 3:30 p.m. ET.
PHOTO AND VIDEO AVAILABLE: Media members who register on the IndyCar Series media site have access to photography as well as video. Register for access to photos at: /www.indycarmedia.com/pages/ApplyforAccess