Sato Retired From the GoPro Indy GP of Sonoma After Engine Failure and Finished 27th

Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing
GoPro Indy Grand Prix of Sonoma – Sonoma Raceway
IZOD IndyCar Series
RACE NOTES/QUOTES – Sunday, August 26, 2012
TAKUMA SATO, No. 15 Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone:  “It was a diffi­cult weekend. The team worked so hard to find a good balance under speed. We made some good progress over the weekend but it was never fast enough to be what we wanted and in the end, unfor­tu­nately, we had engine failure so it was a very short race. It was a shame because we made some setup changes after the morning warm-up that I felt were posi­tive changes.  I’m looking forward to returning to Balti­more. We should be compet­i­tive as we were in other street course races this year.”

  • FAST FACTS: This was Sato’s third race at Sonoma. He was on Lap 2 when he lost power and retired in 27th place.  He qual­i­fied 16th and finished 18th in 2011 and qual­i­fied 17th and finished 18th in 2010.  Both with KV Racing Tech­nology… His best road/street course qual­i­fying is pole at Edmonton in 2011 and his best finish is second in Edmonton this year… Sato led two street races this season (St. Pete & Long Beach) and at Indi­anapolis Motor Speedway where he nearly won with a last lap pass. Has led 58 laps to date in 2012… In 34 starts in 2010 – 2011, has 17 career top-10 starting spots including four top-five starts and two poles (Edmonton and Iowa 2011). He has earned eight top-10 finishes including three top-five spots (fourth at Mid-Ohio, fifth at Texas and St. Peters­burg in 2011).  Led a total of 61 laps from 2010-11.

TOM ANDERSON, Managing Director Motor­sport Oper­a­tions: “Unfor­tu­nately it was a very disap­pointing weekend. We had a diffi­cult test here and were unable to put a finger on the handling char­ac­ter­is­tics needed here to match the new 2012 car and Fire­stone tires and were a bit off all weekend.  Unfor­tu­nately when things are running down­hill they run way down­hill. This is going to compound our problem here with load-in being Wednesday at noon in Balti­more so there is a little extra work for the guys tonight to finish up with an engine change so we can get this engine back to Honda and we can inves­ti­gate an un-characteristic problem here on this motor. This engine change is going to cost us a 10-grid penalty in Balti­more. We have been extremely strong on street courses this season and are looking forward to Balti­more and hope that we can qualify extremely well to over­come that 10-grid penalty and be a factor in the race.”
NEXT UP:  The Grand Prix of Balti­more will take place next weekend.  The race will be tele­vised live on NBC Sports Network at 2:00 p.m. ET Sunday, September 2.