Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing
Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course
Verizon IndyCar Series
PRACTICE NOTES/QUOTES – July 27, 2018
RAHAL AND SATO SET THE THIRD AND 16TH FASTEST TIMES IN PRACTICE FOR THE HONDA INDY 200 AT MID-OHIO RESPECTIVELY
1) Ryan Hunter-Reay 1:05.1950 / 124.684 mph
3) Graham Rahal 1:05.4141 / 124.267 mph
16) Takuma Sato 1:06.1101 / 122.959 mph
GRAHAM RAHAL, No. 15 Fifth Third Bank Dallara/Honda/Firestone: “It was a good day. In the end I think we got the Fifth Third Bank car pretty close. We still have some work to do over night to try to figure out what this car wants on the red (alternate) tires and all of that stuff but so far it’s been a pretty strong day. We will get with Takuma tonight, look over the data, and see what we need to keep making progress. It just makes life so much easier to qualify well. The year that we won, yeah we struggled in qualifying and got blocked and started 13th but it turned out to be ‘Lucky 13’ but that’s no fun. This year we have not done a good job of just starting in the front and having a normal day. It would be a nice thing to have happen. There have been a lot of circumstances that have bit us this year and there have been times that there have been opportunities that we haven’t taken advantage of. We want to have a good weekend and put it all together.”
FAST FACTS: The 2018 Honda Indy 200 will mark Rahal’s 11th Indy car race here. His best start is fourth in 2009 and his best finish is his win here in 2015. He has finished in the top-five the past four years. A complete list of results is available upon request… At the age of 16 in 2005, he became the youngest to claim the SCCA National Formula Atlantic championship at the SCCA National Championship Runoffs here by a dominant 43-seconds. He also competed in the Star Mazda race here in 2005 (S/F 4/9) and tested a Grand Am car here in 2007… His highest start of the season is fifth at Long Beach and his highest finish is second in St. Pete… Has SIX IndyCar Series wins (2008 – St. Pete street course; 2015 – Fontana Super Speedway, Mid-Ohio road course; 2016 – Texas Super Speedway; 2017 Detroit Race 1, Detroit Race 2) and THREE poles (2009 – St. Pete street course, Kansas oval; 2017 – Detroit Race 1 street) and his highest series season-ending standing is fourth place in 2015… Rahal is ranked eighth in series point standings with a total of 313.
TAKUMA SATO, No. 30 Mi-Jack / Panasonic Dallara/Honda/Firestone: “The day started pretty good. There were several red flag interruptions in the first practice but the car worked pretty well and I think we were competitive. We tried some setup changes in the second practice session that I thought were initially good but it looks like we needed to shift in another direction for the red tire. We might not have had the ultimate speed we wanted today but we made good progress.”
FAST FACTS: Will be his 9th race here. In his eight previous races, his best start is third – in 2010 with KVRT and in 2017 with Andretti Autosport. He has two top-five finishes and three top-10’s. In 2011 he finished fourth with KVRT and he finished fifth last year after starting third… His highest start of the season is fifth at St. Pete and his highest finish is third at Iowa… Has TWO IndyCar Series wins (2013 – Long Beach street course, 2017 – Indy 500 oval) and SEVEN poles (2011 Iowa oval, Edmonton street; 2013 Houston Race 1 street; 2014 St. Pete street, Detroit Race 2 street; 2017 Detroit Race 2, Pocono oval)… He is ranked 12th in series point standings with 245.
RAHAL LETTERMAN LANIGAN RACING AT MID-OHIO … The Honda Indy 200 will mark the 21st Indy car event for Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing (RLL) here. The team also competed in the Atlantic Series race in 2003 with Danica Patrick and has competed in ALMS races here in 2007 and from 2009-2012. The team has one win (G. Rahal 2015), four podiums (3rd: B. Rahal 1997, 1998; G. Rahal 2017) and the highest start is pole (Herta 1997). Another front row start came in 1999 (Herta; 2nd). Prior to the 2018 event, the team prepared a total of 30 Indy car entries for drivers Bobby Rahal (1992-98), Mike Groff (1994), Raul Boesel (1995), Bryan Herta (1996-99), Max Papis (1999-2001), Jimmy Vasser (2002), Michel Jourdain Jr. (2002-03) Ryan Hunter-Reay (2007-2008), Takuma Sato (2012), Graham Rahal (2013-2017) and James Jakes (2013). The team has earned FOUR podiums (1st – G. Rahal; 3rd – B. Rahal 1997, 1998, G. Rahal 2017), 13 top-five’s and 17 top-10 finishes at the track. The No. 15 Fifth Third Bank entry for Graham Rahal and No. 30 Mi-Jack / Panasonic entry for Takuma Sato will bring the Indy car total to 32 entries in 2018.
NEXT UP: Practice 3 will take place tomorrow from 10:00 – 10:45 a.m. ET and qualifying will be 1:35 – 2:50. NBCSN will broadcast qualifying at 1:30 p.m. ET Saturday. Timing and Scoring information and live streaming video is available for all sessions from www.indycar.com and includes live commentary by the INDYCAR Radio Network. The Honda Indy 200 will be televised live on CNBC beginning at 3:00 PM ET Sunday, July 29.