Pagenaud leads Schmidt Peterson 1-2 in Shell and Pennzoil Grand Prix of Houston race 2

IndyCar, IndyCar News/Releases, INDYCAR PR — By on June 29, 2014 9:23 pm

SEBASTIAN SAAVEDRA (No. 17 Automatic Fire Sprinklers KV AFS Racing Chevrolet): “To be honest it’s been a pretty rough weekend. It hurts more when you have an amazing car and just not able to use it. Yesterday was Ryan Briscoe and today was a mechanical issue on my out lap. We had to pit a few times to try and fix it and once we were back out there the Automatic Fire Sprinklers, Inc. – KV AFS Racing car was one of the quickest. Unfortunately, we were six laps down and could only advance through the field by other driver’s mistakes, which is not where you want to be. I’m very proud of all my boys. They keep doing an awesome job. Days like this happen and we just have to regroup and look forward to Pocono next week.”

SIMON PAGENAUD (No. 77 Schmidt Peterson Hamilton Racing Honda): “Helio (Castroneves) was super fast on the red tires. The hit was really strong straight away so that’s something I had to deal with straight away after Lap 12 to be honest. But I knew we had a fast car. I knew we would be okay. I had such fantastic traction and comfort in the car that I knew on blacks it would be all right and when we put the blacks on I could see Helio struggling and took my chance in Turn 4 with a really good pass, a good criss-cross opportunity and all was clean with Helio. I don’t know what happened to him. Disappointed we couldn’t run a fight to the end.” [On the Oculus Car] “What a beauty! First of all, I love the orange like this. The car looks really cool and in addition to that the package is incredible. It’s the classiest of the field this weekend, which is why I was so disappointed yesterday. But we kept it nice today and as a race driver when you have car like this my job is to win and I did my job today.”

WILL POWER (No. 12 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet): “I had a great car today; passed a lot of cars. We had a great first pit sequence with the Verizon Chevy. We were in position for a good day, considering where we qualified. We were going to maximize our points and we had a parts malfunction with two laps to go. It’s the same part that malfunctioned on two other cars at the Grand Prix of Indianapolis. I feel bad for all the sponsors. We fought really hard all day with nothing to show for it. We have a nice lead in the points but we need to get back on track a little bit at Pocono.”

JUAN PABLO MONTOYA (No. 2 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet): “That was a fun day. The No. 2 Verizon Chevy was really good. It was good on both the ‘red’ tires and ‘black’ tires. We were in position there at the end. The racing was really hard right there. That was a good learning experience for me and I’ll know how hard I can race the next time I’m in that situation. Very good points day for us. Now we go to Pocono where I have a lot of experience.”

JAMES HINCHCLIFFE (No. 27 United Fiber & Data Honda): “We clearly can’t drive when half of the race is run under yellow. I’m embarrassed almost to have been in that race with the amount of cautions there were. We had an engine problem and were running in the back… but I just can’t believe how many cautions there were in the end. It was good for us. All those accidents were moving us up, because obviously we can’t make any progress with a damaged car. But, I’m just gutted. It’s such a long day out there when you’re not really in the race. I think the United Fiber & Data car was competitive up until we had the problem. We’ll just move on to the next one.’

MARCO ANDRETTI (No. 25 Snapple Honda): “The Snapple car was good today. We showed we were a contender for the win, but things didn’t end in our favor. I need to get better at getting up to speed on cold tires – which is usually my strong point, so we need to figure that out. We got caught up with other cars at the end and were forced from fifth to 11th and just couldn’t get back up to the front before the checkered.”

CARLOS MUNOZ (No. 34 Cinsay HVM Honda): “It’s a really disappointing day after the great race we had yesterday. Today I was just pushing hard, trying hard. I was in a good position, for sure. I was fifth at that point (making contact), but this is racing. It was my mistake. I just lost the car, and now I’ll focus on next week for Pocono.”

JOSEF NEWGARDEN (No. 67 Strike/Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing Honda): “Just a tough day. Nothing seemed to really go our way except for the first part of that race. I think we were doing a good job on strategy. We had great calls and good pit stops. The guys were solid on everything in the first part of the race. But just all day long if you look at the little things, we got bit by silly stuff. There was an incident in qualifying that I didn’t agree with that sent us to the back. We tried a bit of an aggressive strategy but then we had a failure in the pits (wheel gun failure) so it’s just a shame to not be able to put anything together while having good pace.”

JACK HAWKSWORTH (No. 98 Integrity Energee Drink Honda): “Just a fantastic day really. We’ve been starting up front so many times this year and it’s not happened on Race Day. Today, we had a terrible qualifying and we end up on the podium. The guys did a great job on pit wall. We were quick at the right time. We were able to pass cars at the right time and I’m so delighted and so proud of Bryan Herta Autosport. They really deserve this. It’s been rough this year. We’ve been so fast on occasions and it’s just not quite happened. We haven’t been able to put it together and today we were able to do it.”

RYAN HUNTER-REAY (No. 28 DHL Honda):”We fought issues with the drive train all day, so to be able to salvage points and bring home a sixth-place finish was big for us. At this point in the season every point counts and we want to do everything we can to close in on the championship.”

JUSTIN WILSON (No. 19 Dale Coyne Racing Honda): “It was a frustrating end to my day. I think we were the first guys to pit, no, Aleshin came in two laps before us so on our lap we were the first ones. I thought we were good and I thought it was going to work out. We struggled a bit on restarts so guys were all over the back of me. I knew that if I could hang on for a couple of laps I would get going and be quick again. Marco tried to come down the inside and it wasn’t really going to happen. He tried to get out of it and he just tapped me into the wall. He came down and apologized and said ‘I didn’t mean to do that.’ It is just racing. I know it was just a mistake and it is a shame but we kept going on when we were a lap down and we were trying to salvage any points we can.”

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