Carpenter claims victory in Firestone 600 at Texas Motor Speedway

IndyCar, IndyCar News/Releases, INDYCAR PR — By on June 8, 2014 9:33 am

GRAHAM RAHAL (No. 15 National Guard Honda): “It was a long race and the National Guard team fought hard tonight. There were long stretches of green. We tried really hard to get the car better and better during the race and we did improve but we’ve got to get more competitive. I think we had some quick lap times out there but we’re still a little ways off. To finish 12th feels relatively good but we expect a lot better for this team and myself. To finish tonight says a lot; it’s a tough place. Grip and maintaining the tires is a premium here and we struggled a little bit tonight but we’ll keep working hard and move forward. We have a lot of oval testing coming up during the break before Houston which is a good thing; we can work hard with it. I think our street course package is good so without a doubt I feel pretty confident that we can have really good races in Houston and be competitive.”

SIMON PAGENAUD (No. 77 Schmidt Peterson Hamilton Racing Honda): “We had a great call from the team at the end of the race for that last restart. They gave me a car that suited me very well tonight, which helped me feel comfortable the whole race. Our pit stops were very good, and the whole Schmidt Peterson Motorsports team is showing really well right now. Honda did a great job too, giving us a lot of speed in our engine. It was so exciting at the end, I think the fans must have really enjoyed it.We had such a good night. The car was easy to drive. The No. 77 car was very consistent, which makes your life a lot easier on an oval. I was in full attack mode with the strong Honda engine all night. The pit strategy at the end really gave us the push we needed to move up to fourth. I was a little confused when I was told to pit with two laps left, but I followed the orders and it truly paid off. Fresh tires at the end of a race is what you want. That split second choice enabled us to gain two spots on the final laps, and I had a blast.”

RYAN BRISCOE (No. 8 NTT DATA Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet): “It was another hard-fought race for NTT DATA Racing and the No. 8 NTT DATA Chevrolet. We started in 13th, so it feels good to end in the top 10 in seventh. We’re still not where we want to be at the checkered flag, but we’re getting closer. We have a couple of weeks off until Houston and we’ll be able to get some good testing time in next week at Iowa and Milwaukee. I’m looking forward to the double-header.”

CHARLIE KIMBALL (No. 83 Novo Nordisk Ganassi Racing Chevrolet): “Overall it was a pretty good night for the No. 83 NovoLog FlexPen Chevrolet. The Novo Nordisk Chip Ganassi Racing crew did a great job in the pits and it’s great to see all four Chip Ganassi Racing cars in the top eight. This is honestly probably one of the hardest mental races that I’ve ever competed in. The car slides around so much at the end of a stint and you go from driving at 213 mph laps to 190 mph laps. We’ll take another top 10 finish and stick with our streak of every time we see a checkered flag, we end in the top 10.”

SCOTT DIXON (No. 9 Target Chip Ganassi Chevrolet): “It’s good to get some points here in the Target car at Texas. We hadn’t been strong the last two races here so it was a relief to finish I guess. Not the result we wanted but we’ll take it and go on to the next race in Houston.”

TONY KANAAN (No. 10 Suave for Men Chevrolet): “We had a good car, I think, and were able to challenge for the lead early on. The Suave For Men team did a great job tonight. We ran strong but that’s not enough for this team. We had to change the steering wheel near the end but made that time back up on track. The racing was exciting tonight and we are definitely improving.”

SEBASTIAN SAAVEDRA (No. 17 Automatic Fire Sprinklers KV AFS Racing Chevrolet): “It was quite a long race out there, but I’m so proud of the whole Automatic Fire Sprinklers, Inc – KV AFS Racing guys. It’s been a long weekend for us as we never had a strong car but we never gave up the fight. We should have had a top-10 finish, but I made a mistake hitting the outside rear tire in Will Power’s pit box and received a drive through penalty very late in the race, which cost me some places. Overall it wasn’t the position we wanted but hopefully we will learn from here and apply it to Houston in a couple of weeks time.”

JAMES HINCHCLIFFE (No. 27 United Fiber & Data Honda): “It’s shocking – right from the word ‘go,’ I was hanging on for dear life. I don’t know what happened. The United Fiber & Data Honda was so good in final practice last night, and from the drop of the green, we were struggling. There were times when the car was so loose, we were, like I said, just hanging on. Rough day for the team all around; I feel bad for all the guys as they put in a lot of hard work. We’ll take a look at it and just try to rebound in a couple weeks.”

MARCO ANDRETTI (No. 25 Snapple Honda): “I’m sad for the crew. I wanted nothing more than to deliver a win on their home turf. This one’s frustrating and it’s going to really hurt for the championship, too.”

CARLOS MUNOZ (No. 34 Cinsay HVM Honda): “When I made that mistake (spinning in pit lane), I just braked to get down to the speed limit, and I just lost the car completely. There was nothing I could do, and before that we were running really good, really fast. Even after that happened, the Cinsay car was still really good, and I think we could have finished in the top positions. I’m just a little disappointed with that mistake, but it’s experience for next time. Now we’ll move on – we have testing next week, and I’ll try to think about that instead.”

JOSEF NEWGARDEN (No. 67 Strike/Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing Honda): “Tough race. There were a lot of green laps in a row which is typical with (Verizon) IndyCar (Series) right now because there’s not a lot of mistakes out there. People keep going for a long time so that’s difficult when you’re trying to sort out the car because you don’t have a lot of yellows to work with. For us we were alright we just suffered with the rear. We weren’t quite as strong with the rear as we thought we were and that was what we were chasing all night.”


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