Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing
Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach
Verizon IndyCar Series
NOTES/QUOTES – Friday, April 13, 2018
SATO SIXTH FASTEST IN PRACTICE FOR THE TOYOTA GRAND PRIX OF LONG BEACH; RAHAL 11TH
1) Scott Dixon 1:08.4112 / 103.562 mph (Time from Practice 1; 5th in Practice 2)
6) Takuma Sato 1:08.9295 / 102.783 mph (Time from Practice 1; 4th in Practice 2) 11) Graham Rahal 1:09.2349 / 102.330 mph (Time from Practice 1; 8th in Practice 2)
GRAHAM RAHAL, No. 15 Total Dallara/Honda/Firestone: “It was an okay day. I think the Total Honda was good right off the bat on blacks (Firestone primary tires) comparatively. When we went to reds I think we lost the handling a little bit. We also had a really poor out lap. We were trying to get a big gap (on track ahead). We went out too early and I didn’t even get to get any temperature in them and I think the reds are only spectacular on one lap and we just missed it. Unfortunately that was that. Saturday is a new day so hopefully we can improve the Total Honda slightly and go from there. We have some work to do to catch some of the guys up front but overall it was a good day. The car is not bad, but it’s not quite good enough but we will keep working away to try our best to get a car capable of winning here. It was a textbook Long Beach Grand Prix day; great weather and a great crowd.”
TAKUMA SATO, No. 30 Mi-Jack / Panasonic Dallara/Honda/Firestone: “We made good progress today. It was productive day until the end of the session. We have more work to do because the lap time is not representative of what we feel we can get out of it. We made good progress from the first session and hopefully we will continue that tomorrow.”
3 POLES, 6 PODIUMS FOR RLL IN 18 INDY CAR RACES AT LONG BEACH: This marks the 19th time for Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing (RLL) to compete in the main event. In total, the team has won three poles (Herta 1998, Vasser 2002, Jourdain, Jr. 2003); made five front row starts including an all-Team Rahal front row in 1998 (2nd – Rahal 1998, Brack 2001); earned their best finish of second place four times (Rahal 1992-1993, Vasser 2002, G. Rahal 2013) and earned six podiums here (2nd – Rahal 1992-1993, Vasser 2002 & G. Rahal 2013; 3rd – Herta 1998-1999). Although the team didn’t compete in Indy car races here from 2004-2011 while they fielded a fulltime entry in the Indy Racing League (2004-2008), they did compete in the 2003 and 2004 Atlantic races with Danica Patrick and in the 2007 American Le Mans Series (ALMS) race. In 2009, the team returned to the streets of Long Beach in the GTLM class of the ALMS with BMW Team RLL and has finished on the podium each year but 2016 and 2017 although they started from pole in 2016 and led in 2017 before an electrical issue forced them to fall back. Despite not finishing on the podium the past two years, Long Beach is the most successful venue for the team on the current IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship schedule. The team has won the race three times (2011, 2013 and 2015), has eight podium finishes and started from pole five out of nine years.
NEXT UP: Practice will take place Saturday morning from 10:45-11:30 a.m. PT and qualifying will take place from 3:30-4:45 PM PT. NBCSN will begin coverage of qualifying at 6:30 p.m. ET Saturday. Timing and Scoring information and live streaming video is available for all sessions from www.indycar.com. The Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach will be televised live on NBCSN beginning at 4:00 p.m. ET Sunday, April 15.
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