Jason Line Starts Countdown with Big Win at zMAX Dragway

Jason Line Starts Countdown with Big Win at zMAX Dragway 

Mooresville, N.C., September 16, 2012 – Summit Racing driver Jason Line started his Full Throttle championship defense in impressive fashion, capturing the Pro Stock title at Sunday’s NHRA Nationals in Concord, N.C., the start of which were delayed by over five hours due to morning rain.  Starting from the second position, Line defeated Frank Gugliotta, Larry Morgan and Warren Johnson in the early rounds before squaring off against current points leader Allen Johnson in the final.

Although Line was able to gain the upper hand at the start with a strong .013 reaction time, both drivers soon found themselves fighting to maintain control on the very tricky surface. Fortunately, Line was able to regain traction first, crossing the finish line in 7.518-seconds with a top speed of 200.20 mph to outdistance Johnson’s 11.800-second, 78.71 mph pass.  It was Line’s second win of the season, 29th of his career, first in his new Chevrolet Camaro and first at zMAX Dragway.

“This was a big win for the Summit Racing team, and we couldn’t have started the Countdown in better fashion,” said Line.  We haven’t had one for a while, so it feels pretty good.  It’s tough when you get conditions like this and although the track had been pretty good for most of the day, you had to make sure to stay in the groove or else you could be in trouble. However, it was a completely different story in the final.

“We ran out of sequence because of the weather, and ended up following the fuel cars, which can be a tough situation and you have to deal with it the best you can.  Obviously it’s easy for me to say since things worked out well for us, but we made the best of a not-so-great situation.

“I shouldn’t say this but Allen (Johnson) hardly ever pedals when he shakes, so all I knew was that I was getting back in it as long as I didn’t see him, and I never did.  I may have destroyed the clutch in the process, but we won the race.  Best of all, I was able to get my first win here at zMAX Dragway, which is huge.”

It should have come as no surprise that Line was one of dominant cars on race day, as he had been equally strong during qualifying, posting the quickest time in two of the four sessions on Friday and Saturday in securing the second starting position.  He continued that trend on Sunday, posting the quickest elapsed time in every round, starting with a 6.576-second pass in his opening round victory over a red-lighting Frank Gugliotta. After defeating Larry Morgan in the second round, Line squared off against all-time Pro Stock wins leader Warren Johnson in the the semifinals, with the winner advancing to the money round.

Once again, it was a wire-to-wire victory for Line, who gained the advantage at the start and never looked back, posting the quickest elapsed time of the day at 6.554-seconds with a top speed of 211.39 mph to advance to the 62nd final round of his career, sixth of the season and second at zMAX Dragway.

“My Summit Racing crew gave me a Camaro that was bad to the bone today,” said Line.  “It was simply phenomenal.  We had struggled in the past few months, but we went down the race track on almost every run with no issues, and we were able to take advantage of it and come home with a huge win.”

Line also took time after the win to thank those whose support makes days like today possible.

“Naturally, we could not do this without the support of several great people and companies,” said Line.  “Of course, it all starts with Ken and Judy Black, who were here with us this weekend to share in this victory.  Also at the very top of the list is Summit Racing Equipment, and their many employees, who we are so proud to represent.  In addition, we want to thank Chevrolet, Maxima Oils, Cometic Gaskets, Mac Tools, PAC Valve Springs, CP Carillo, K&N Filters, Speed Dawg Shift Knobs, Wiley-X and everyone else whose involvement with our race team makes days like today possible.  We are glad to bring them this win.”

Finally, despite the big win, Line was quick to caution that the Countdown had just begun, and with numerous quality teams lurking in the standings, he assured all those in attendance that this fight was far from over, especially considering the tough schedule teams will faces over the next few weeks.

“This next month will be very tough on our Summit guys with three more races in as many weeks, especially considering the carnage we’ve created lately,” said Line.  “Every one of them does a terrific job, and we have more bullets that we can use, so we’ll be okay.  This is going to be a tough fight for the championship, so for us to start the way we did today was huge, because you have so many quality cars in the Countdown.  The drivers have to drive well and the crew chiefs need to do a perfect job on every run, which is a lot to ask of anybody, but I think we’re up to the task.  We’ll enjoy this win tonight and a little during the week, but tomorrow we’ll be back at work getting ready for Dallas.”

Honda Racing–Starworks Wins Again for HPD in Sao Paulo

Starworks Wins Again for HPD in Sao Paulo

The American Starworks team once again led the way for Honda Performance Development Saturday in FIA World Endurance Championship competition, taking the P2 class victory in its HPD ARX-03b at the Six Hours of Sao Paulo in Brazil, after a long mid-race battle with the Morgan Nissan of OAK Racing.

In P1, the contest between private teams once again featured the HPD ARX-03a of the British Strakka Racing organization against a pair of Lola Toyotas fielded by the Swiss Rebellion Racing team, while a second ARX-03a run by JRM Motorsports had its most promising run of the season.

The Starworks HPD started from the pole in the strong, 11-car P2 field after an outstanding performance on Friday by Stephane Sarrazin, but the #35 OAK Racing Morgan produced a formidable challenge, as the teams traded the lead throughout the first four hours. The Oreca Nissan of ADR-Delta Racing also figured during the contest’s opening hour, but then fell off the pace with mechanical issues that resulted in a long pit stop.

Two hours into the race, Ryan Dalziel in the HPD and Alex Brundle in the OAK Morgan put on a thrilling battle for the P2 lead, trading places several times and running side-by-side up the long Sao Paulo front straight for three consecutive laps before Dalziel finally established an advantage. Once in front, Dalziel and teammates Sarrazin and Enzo Potolicchio extended their lead over them remaining two hours to a three-lap margin at the finish, helped by a mechanical problem with the #35 OAK Morgan and a pair of pit-lane speeding penalties for the sister #24 car. It was the third P2 win of the season for Starworks, on the heels of previous triumphs at the 12 Hours of Sebring and 24 Hours of Le Mans, and extended its class points lead after five of eight races.

In the “privateer” portion of the P1 contest, late-race contact between the Nick Leventis in the Strakka HPD and the #13 Rebellion Racing Lola of Harald Primat while fighting for second place sent both cars That set the stage for yet another come-from-behind charge from Strakka as, first Leventis, then Jonny Kane began to close the 40-second gap to the #13 Rebellion car. The margin was halved after the last round of pit stops, and Kane was relentless in his pursuit, finally catching and passing the Lola at the start of the final lap to finish second among the private P1 entries and fifth overall.

Fielding a second HPD ARX-03a, JRM produced its best effort of the season, qualifying strongly and featuring in the early race fight with Rebellion and Strakka, but an off-course excursion and extended pit stop at the two-hour mark dropped JRM to an unrepresentative seventh-place finish.

Having finished its 2012 European and American rounds, the World Endurance Championship now heads to the Bahrain International Circuit on the Arabian Peninsula on Saturday, September 29, for the 6 Hours of Bahrain.
Ryan Dalziel (#44 Starworks HPD ARX-03b) started 1st, finished 1st in P2, 3rd class win of 2012: “I
think the Starworks HPD was the car to have this weekend! It’s a great package, but we have great people, too. We turned up here and found that we were competitive straight away – we have an extremely fast and reliable car. Most places seem to come down to tire wear, and we’re extremely conservative on what we do to the car to make sure we can double-stint [the tires] consistently. A lot of other cars seem to be falling off in their second stints and I think we’ve been strong at that all year.

Today was definitely won by strategy, hard work, and a well-prepared car.” Steve Eriksen (Vice President, Honda Performance Development) on Saturday’s WEC race in Brazil:
“Another fine effort from Starworks was rewarded with another P2 win, further cementing its reputation as one of the top teams in the series this season, with three wins in five races – including the ‘big two’ at LeMans and Sebring. We’re pleased to see the points lead extended, and of course, its pole position in qualifying. It was quite an accomplishment for an American team in this quality P2 field. In P1, it was encouraging to see JRM continuing to improve and start the race in such a strong fashion, and Strakka produced yet another thrilling finish. It seems to be becoming a habit for them! Now, it’s on to Bahrain
and the races in Japan and China. We’re looking forward to them.”

Honda Racing–HPD Teams Sweep VIR

HPD Teams Sweep VIR
Both Honda Performance Development teams in the American Le Mans Series closed in on their respective championships Saturday with victories at Virginia International Raceway. Muscle Milk Pickett Racing won the VIR 240 overall and LMP1 for its sixth victory of the season with drivers Klaus Graf and Lucas Luhr; while the Level 5 Motorsports duo of Christophe Bouchut and Scott Tucker followed up its overall win two weeks ago on the streets of Baltimore with an LMP2 class win in Virginia.

It was a perfect race weekend for Muscle Milk Pickett, as the team set a new outright VIR lap record with its HPD ARX-03a in securing the pole on Friday, with Graf at the wheel around the challenging 17-turn, 3.27-mile road course located in the hill country of southern Virginia. Saturday’s race saw the Muscle Milk pair lead from start to finish, avoiding issues with slower traffic and including a new race lap record by Luhr, to pull away to a dominating three-lap victory over the Lola-Mazda of Dyson Racing. The team once again claimed the Michelin Green X Challenge, its fourth MGXC award of the year.

The victory also moved the Muscle Milk Pickett team one step closer to the LMP1 championship. Unofficially, the team needs only to complete at least 70 per cent of the race distance at next month’s Petit Le Mans season finale to secure the championship.
In LMP2, it was another exciting race-long battle between the pair of HPD ARX-03bs, against the fast Morgan-Nissan of Conquest Racing, with all three cars leading the race at different points – and all three involved in contact with other cars during the course of the four-hour contest.

At the end, Level 5’s superior pit strategy appeared to make the difference, as the #055 HPD of Christophe Bouchut exited the pits for the final time with a narrow margin over the Morgan of David Heinemeier-Hansson. That proved decisive, as Bouchut skillfully worked his way through the slower GT field to pull away to a 28-second victory and the fifth win of 2012 for Bouchut and team owner/driver Scott Tucker.

The team’s second HPD, driven by Tucker, Ricardo Gonzalez and Luis Diaz, finished third in LMP2 on track, but was later excluded from the results when it failed the post-race “stall test”, as the engine did not shut off when the air intake was sealed. With one race remaining in the 2012 season, HPD and its partner teams and drivers continue to lead their
respective driver, team and manufacturer championships in both LMP1 and LMP2. The American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patron concludes Saturday, October 20 with the Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta, near Gainesville, Georgia.

Klaus Graf (#6 Muscle Milk Pickett Racing HPD ARX-03a) started 1st, finished 1st, the team’s sixth race win of 2012; also won the Michelin Green X Challenge for fast, clean and efficient performance for the 4th time this year: “It was a difficult race to manage from a traffic standpoint. There are certain places [here] where you just can’t get around another car without taking too much risk. So I pushed hard, but at the same time I was conservative with the moves I made in traffic. For us, we had a trouble-free race, which is what we really came here to do. It was a perfect race for Muscle Milk Racing. Now we go back to the shop and prepare [for Petit Le Mans], where [finishing 70 per cent of the race] is not the easiest thing to do. It will be a big team effort.”

Steve Eriksen (Vice President, Honda Performance Development) on Saturday’s race at Virginia International Raceway: “Congratulations to everyone at both Muscle Milk Pickett Racing and Level 5 Motorsports for a near perfect weekend at Virginia International Raceway. It takes a great deal of hard work with long hours of preparation and planning to produce a ‘clean sweep’ weekend like this one, so this is a great reward for the efforts of everyone at HPD and our partner teams. In addition to their dominating weekend, Muscle Milk also won the Michelin Green X Challenge for the fourth time this year, and it is the sixth Green X award for an HPD team in 2012, an accomplishment of which all of us at HPD
can be proud. Now, the championships in LMP1 and LMP2 once again come down to the always challenging Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta, where HPD certainly has had more than its share of ‘exciting moments’ over the years. But we all look forward to the challenge, and to successfully defending our string of prototype titles.”

RCR Post Race Report NNS Chicagoland Speedway and NCWTS Iowa Speedway

RCR Post Race Report 
NNS Chicagoland Speedway and NCWTS Iowa Speedway  
NASCAR Nationwide Series
Dollar General 300 powered by Coca-Cola 
Chicagoland Speedway
September 15, 2012
Race Highlights:
Richard Childress Racing teammates finished third (Austin Dillon), fifth (Paul Menard) and eighth (Elliott Sadler).
Sadler is in the second position in the NASCAR Nationwide Series driver championship point standings, nine points behind leader Ricky Stenhouse Jr., while Dillon ranks third in the standings, trailing the leader by 34 points.
The No. 2 Chevrolet team is third in the Nationwide Series owner championship point standings, 13 points shy of the No. 18 team’s lead, with the No. 3 team fourth in the standings and the No. 33 team sixth.
Dillon leads the Sunoco Rookie of the Year standings over Cole Whitt.
According to NASCAR’s Loop Data Statistics, Menard was ranked the seventh-Fastest Driver Early in a Run (168.466 mph), Late in a Run (168.078 mph) and on Restarts (165.090 mph). He also maintained the eighth-best Average Running Position (7.645), Driver Rating (103) and Green Flag Speed (167.236 mph).
Dillon and Menard spent 100 percent of the contested Laps in the Top 15, while Sadler turned 199 of the 200 laps (99.5 percent) in the top 15.
The RCR drivers turned 51 of the Fastest Laps Run with Dillon contributing 38, Sadler with 11 and Menard with two.
Dillon was the Fastest Driver Late In a Run with an average speed of 167.599 mph according to NASCAR’s Post-Race Loop Data Statistics. Dillon ranked second in Average Running Position (2.582), Laps Led (52) and Speed in Traffic (168.412 mph). He was third-Fastest on Restarts (166.161 mph), averaged a Green Flag Speed of 168.400 mph and earned a Driver Rating of 127.1 ranking him third in both categories.
Sadler notched the second position in Quality Passes, third in Fastest Drivers Late in a Run and fourth in Speed in Traffic.
Stenhouse, Jr. claimed the victory at Chicagoland Speedway, followed to the line by Kyle Busch, Dillon, Brad Keselowski and Menard.
The next scheduled Nationwide Series race is the Kentucky 300 at Kentucky Speedway on Saturday, September 22. The 27th race of the 2012 season is scheduled to be televised live on ESPN beginning at 3:30 p.m. Eastern Time and broadcast live on the Performance Racing Network and SiriusXM NASCAR Radio. 

Chevy Racing–Ed Carpenter Captures Win in IndyCar Season Finale at Auto Club Speedway; Brings Home 11th Win for Chevrolet IndyCar V6 of the Season

Ed Carpenter Captures Win in IndyCar Season Finale at Auto Club Speedway; Brings Home 11th Win for Chevrolet IndyCar V6 of the Season
FONTANA, Calif (September 15, 2012) – Ed Carpenter let the competition know early in the weekend of the IZOD IndyCar Series season finale at Auto Club Speedway that he was going to be a force to be reckoned with in the MAVTV 500. And the first-year team owner/driver did just that with a gritty performance that delivered his first victory of the 2012 season.
“Congratulations to Ed Carpenter, and the No. 20 Chevrolet team on their exciting victory tonight at Auto Club Speedway,” said Chris Berube, Chevrolet Racing Program Manager, IZOD IndyCar Series.  “Wow, what a race!  It was a nail-biter throughout the entire 250 laps.  We couldn’t be more proud of the effort of our Chevrolet IndyCar V6 teams throughout the entire IZOD IndyCar Series season.”
Carpenter started his No. 20 Fuzzy’s Premium Ultra Vodka Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet fifth in the 26-car field, and worked his way to the lead on lap 66 of the 250-lap/500-mile race.  He was credited with leading eight times for a race-high total of 62 laps.
But it was Carpenter’s last-lap pass of former Series’ champion Dario Franchitti that secured the win. It is his second IZOD IndyCar Series victory, the first coming in the 2011 season-ending race at Kentucky Speedway where he also bested Franchitti on the last lap.
A fourth place finish netted Ryan Hunter-Reay, No. 28 Team DHL/Sun Drop Citrus Soda Andretti Autosport Chevrolet, the title of 2012 IZOD IndyCar Series Champion, as well as capturing the Oval Championship. The double championships are his first in the IZOD IndyCar Series.
Hunter-Reay entered tonight’s race with a 17 point deficit to Will Power, No. 12 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet, in the battle for the title. After Power received substantial damage in a single car on-track incident on lap 56, Hunter-Reay had to finish fifth or better to secure the crown. When the checkered flag flew, Hunter-Reay scored a fourth-place finish, and captured the Championship by three points over Power.
Berube concluded by saying: “And, congratulations to Ryan Hunter-Reay and the No. 28 Andretti Autosport Chevrolet team on winning the 2012 IZOD IndyCar Series’ Driver’s Championship as well as the A.J. Foyt Oval Track Championship! They fought hard to win the crown, and will be a great champion for the IZOD IndyCar Series, and for Chevrolet.”
Giving Team Chevy five of the top-10 finishers in tonight’s race were: Helio Castroneves, No. 3 Auto Club of Southern California Team Penske Chevrolet – fifth; Marco Andretti, No. 26 Team RC Cola Andretti Autosport Chevrolet – eighth, and Katherine Legge, No. 6 TrueCar Dragon Racing Chevrolet – ninth.
Completing the top-five finishers were Dario Franchitti (Honda) – second, and Scott Dixon (Honda) – third.
Chevrolet, in its first season back in IndyCar competition, captured the Series’ Manufacturers’ Championship with 11 victories in 15 races. In addition to Hunter-Reay’s two titles, Power captured the Road Course Championship for the third consecutive year.

Honda Racing–Franchitti Finishes Second in California Season Finale

Franchitti Finishes Second in California Season Finale
A thrilling conclusion to Saturday night’s MAVTV 500 saw a closing-lap duel between Target Chip Ganassi Racing’s Dario Franchitti and Ed Carpenter end just after Carpenter claimed the lead, as Takuma Sato crashed and yellow flags froze the field through the final corners on the 250th – and final – lap of the IZOD IndyCar Series season-ending event at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California.

Franchitti and Carpenter traded the lead several times over the last six laps, a repeat of their closing-lap battle for victory at Kentucky Speedway last year – a race also won by Carpenter in a photo finish.

In addition to Franchitti, his Target Chip Ganassi Racing teammate Scott Dixon, Takuma Sato and Alex Tagliani all had extended runs at the front of the 26-car starting field. As the race approached Lap 200, Honda-powered drivers were running first through fourth, led by Dixon; and at the Lap 125 mid-point in the 500-mile run, Tagliani, Sato and Franchitti were 1-2-3 for Honda.

A crash by Tony Kanaan on Lap 240 set up the wild finish. Race officials briefly halted the race to clear the track and then restarted on Lap 244 with a six-lap dash to the checkers. When the green flag waved for the final time, Franchitti was in front, with Carpenter and Ryan Hunter-Reay – who needed to finish fifth or better to claim the IZOD IndyCar Series drivers’ championship – rounding out the top three. Sato, in fourth, Dixon and a charging Helio Castroneves rounded out the potential race winners. Franchitti and Carpenter quickly pulled out an advantage of several car lengths over the rest of the frontrunners,
who staged their own equally fierce battle for third through sixth. At the start of the final lap,
Carpenter made one final pass on Franchitti as the pair exited Turn 2 and, just an instant later, Sato spun and crashed without injury to end the race. As a result, Dixon grabbed third, while fourth place was just enough for Hunter-Reay to edge Will Power for the series title.

Ryan Hunter-Reay Wins IZOD IndyCar Series Championship with Chevrolet IndyCar V6 Power

Ryan Hunter-Reay Wins IZOD IndyCar Series Championship with Chevrolet IndyCar V6 Power
FONTANA, Calif (September 15, 2012) – With a fourth place finish in the MAVTV 500 season finale at Auto Club Speedway, Ryan Hunter-Reay is the 2012 IZOD IndyCar Series driver’s champion.  Piloting the No. 28 Team DHL/Sun Drop Citrus Soda Andretti Autosport Chevrolet, Hunter-Reay took the crown with six podium, and nine top-10 finishes that included a Series’-high four wins in the 15-race schedule.
“Congratulations to Ryan Hunter-Reay and the No. 28 Andretti Autosport Chevrolet team on winning the coveted 2012 IZOD IndyCar Series driver’s championship,” said Jim Campbell, U.S. Vice President of Performance Vehicles and Motorsports. “Everyone at Chevrolet is very proud of Ryan and his team for securing their first driver’s crown with Chevrolet IndyCar V6 power. This championship caps off an exciting first year back in IndyCar competition for Chevrolet. We are looking forward to competing next season, and beyond.”
His finish tonight also clinched the Oval Championship commemorated with the A.J. Foyt Oval Championship trophy. On his way to the prestigious title, Hunter-Reay won two of the five oval track races and posted a top-five finish tonight in the season ending race.
The Championship is a culmination of Hunter-Reay’s ninth season in IndyCar, and his third season with Andretti Autosport. He is the first American driver since 2006 (Sam Hornish Jr.) to win the IndyCar title.
In addition to Hunter-Reay’s championship effort, Chevrolet won the Series’ Manufacturers title with 11 wins in the 15-race season in its first year back in IndyCar competition. Chevrolet competed previously in Indy-style competition as an engine manufacturer in 1986-93 and 2002-05 with V-8 engines, winning 105 races. The wins powered Chevrolet to six driver champions, and included seven Indianapolis 500 victories.

Chevy Racing–MAVTV 500

SEPTEMBER 15, 2012
ED CARPENTER, NO. 20 FUZZY’S ULTRA PREMIUM VODKA ED CARPENTER RACING CHEVROLET, RACE WINNER: BEING A TEAM OWNER/DRIVER: “This feels great for a brand new team that just started in November.”
ON OVALS: “I probably should have won Indy (Indianapolis 500) but I kind of messed up a little bit. We have been trying to win ovals all year and finally got it done tonight. Good way to end the year.”
PASSING DARIO FRANCHITTI FOR WIN: “I got a good start, I thought that maybe that was going to be my last chance to get by him and then he just kept protecting the bottom and I started working the top where I would run all night through one and two and kept building momentum, and building momentum and finally got close enough to get a draft and get a run around him on the front stretch.”
RYAN HUNTER-REAY, NO. 28 TEAM DHL/SUN DROP CITRUS SODA ANDRETTI AUTOSPORT CHEVROLET, FINISHED 3RD: 2012 IZOD INDYCAR SERIES CHAMPION: HOW IN THE WORLD DID YOU GET THAT DONE? “I have no idea, that was a team effort right there.  We were struggling all weekend and I didn’t want to let anyone know about it.  We were really in the woods and this hasn’t sunk in yet.  I just drove 500 miles like it was for my life. I cannot believe we are IndyCar champions, but to IndyCar, Sundrop, Chevrolet, DHL, and everyone, you have mad my dreams come true.”
SO THIS RESTART ON THE FINAL RUN, THIS ISNT WHAT YOU WANTED TO SEE, RIGHT?  “Yeah, absolutely, I just wanted to get set back into a rhythm as it was a little bit better but I knew after that red flag I was just sitting there and thinking the tires would take another heat cycle and that we would slide around a bit more.  Everybody raced tough, but they raced clean and my God…….I don’t know about the race but we just kept making it better and better and they did a great job with the radio and the guys did a great job in the pits.  This hasn’t sunk in yet as I am just full of adrenaline. “
HOW ABOUT THE WRECK WITH WILL, HOW CLOSE WAS IT? “You know, I don’t know, he (Will Power) was right next to me and I saw him lose it.  I feel like it was pretty close but I have no idea, you tell me.”
IT WAS CLOSE RIGHT?  “Yes, it was close and he was joking around that he would take me out if it was too close so……..”
TWO YEARS AGO YOU WERE OUT THERE DRIVING A SHOW CAR SO I GUESS YOU DIDN’T THINK THIS MOMENT WAS POSSIBLE? “Not really, and now we have put the hard work in and have the right group of people in surrounding us and Will Power has done a great job of supporting us so I don’t want to overshadow that.”
MICHAEL ANDRETTI, CHAMPIONSHIP TEAM OWNER OF NO. 28 TEAM DHL/SUN DROP CITRUS SODA ANDRETTI AUTOSPORT CHEVROLET:  “This is an incredible day. It wasn’t going so good right at the start there – we were struggling a little bit – and then we saw Will (Power) have his unfortunate accident and we knew it was open from there. We needed to get the job done and it was a lot of hard work. Ryan did a helluva job, and the whole team did – getting the car better and better throughout the race. We had enough there at the end to get it done. I’m just so proud of everybody here with the DHL/Sun Drop team…. There’s a lot more to come. This team is still getting better and better and I think we’re going to be even stronger next year.”
WILL POWER, NO. 12 VERIZON TEAM PENSKE CHEVROLET, SIDELINED AS A RESULT OF SINGLE CAR ON-TRACK INCIDENT ON LAP 56, CREW REPAIRED THE CAR, HE RETURNED TO THE TRACK FOR 12 LAPS OF COMPETITION: ON WHAT HAPPENED? “I just caught a seam. I had a bit of understeer, so I went a half a lane down and caught a seam. It absolutely took me by surprise. It is the last thing I thought would happen running down there on that seam. Depressing to lose the championship again that way.”
HOW DO YOU FEEL? “It’s a season, and you can’t make mistakes like this. The whole season, this is just another race.  It’s depressing to lose the championship again that way. It’s the season; you can’t make mistakes like that. I had understeer all night, I was having to lift, half a lane lower than I was before and caught a seam, and yeah. Man, I don’t know what to say, it’s depressing. I was surprised, I had been pushing all day and just went a little bit different than what I had, and nothing I can say. It’s just depressing. My team was pushing me to get around him (Ryan Hunter-Reay), and it was just a mistake. Just a mistake.”
HOW DO YOU LOOK AHEAD TO THIS? “There is a very slim chance. I don’t even want to watch the rest of race; it’s just going to be so…  I don’t know what say. I don’t know what emotion to feel right now, I’m so disappointed. I just thought (when it happened), another championship gone. That is basically what I said to myself. I am so disappointed for Verizon and all the guys, just to make a mistake like that is just…just bad. It never comes easy, man. It never comes easy.”
WILL POWER – POST RACE QUOTES – FINISHED 24TH: HOW HELPLESS DID YOU FEEL WATCHING THE RACE UNFOLD? “There were definitely times where it looked hopeful, but full credit to my guys for getting the car out to do those 12 laps. It gave us a couple of points. At the end of the day (Ryan) Hunter-Reay is definitely a deserving champion. A real fighter. Probably as far as all-around drivers go, one of the best in the Series because he wins at each discipline. As I look back on the season again, once again the ovals…three crashes on three of the ovals this year, that is massive hits in the points. Three years winning the Road Course Championship quite convincingly, it’s very obvious where I lack.”
TALK ABOUT THE EFFORT BY YOUR TEAM TO GET YOUR CAR BACK IN THE RACE: “You see how hard those boys worked. That was a great effort considering how hard we hit the wall, and to be back out probably 45 minutes later. Full credit to them. To lose another championship, three years in a row, man, I feel because all the guys have been with my car for the last three years. They put in a tremendous effort. I feel bad for Penske Racing.”
DID YOU THINK AT SOME POINTS IN THE RACE IT MIGHT COME TOGETHER? “I did. I was. You never give up hope. I was thinking anything is possible in IndyCar. Anything can happen.”
WILL THE OVALS BE THE FOCUS ON HOW TO IMPROVE THE 12 CAR PROGRAM NEXT YEAR? “It is interesting because we are not slow. I just can’t put my finger on why. It’s not like we’re slow. Or the same thing happens every time. I just don’t know why on the ovals I am jinxed. We get involved in someone’s accident. I don’t know what you do. Where do you look to be better at that? You become massively conservative, or you become really aggressive. It’s hard.”
HELIO CASTRONEVES, NO. 3 AUTO CLUB OF SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA TEAM PENSKE CHEVROLET, FINISHED 6th: “Man, I thought we had a winner tonight in the No. 3 Auto Club machine. We had a great car and just needed some help here and there to finish up front. The Auto Club guys really did a great job in making adjustments and we thought we could get by some people on the final restart with the new tires. I am disappointed we did not get the championship for Team Penske, but in the end it is a top-five finish and that is a good place to be.”
MARCO ANDRETTI, NO. 26 TEAM RC COLA ANDRETTI AUTOSPORT CHEVROLET, FINISHED 8th: “It’s a good thing we were prepared for war tonight. That’s what we had. It was just fight, fight, fight. We were fast, but we had some clutch issues that caused us to stall a couple of times in the pits, so we would drop back and then have to claw our way back up there. I wish we could have had a better result after starting on the pole, but we tried our hardest.
“Congratulations to Ryan (Hunter-Reay) on the champions
hip, they deserve it, and the whole Andretti Autosport team worked really well together this year, and winning the championship is a great reward for everyone in the company.”
KATHERINE LEGGE, NO. 6 TRUECAR DRAGON RACING CHEVROLET, FINISHED 9TH:  ON HER RACE: “The team did an awesome job, I had one of the fastest cars out there. It was my lack of experience, and my mistakes in the pits that cost us a top-six, top-eight. It really could have been very good, but I made three big mistakes. But to get ninth, we’ll take that to move on to next year. 500 miles doesn’t seem that much longer. You get in the zone, and get focused. When the red flag and you come in and start to heat up, that is when it is like ‘oh, I still have eight laps to go’. It kind of sinks in. It was fun.”
JR HILDEBRAND, NO. 4 NATIONAL GUARD/PANTHER RACING CHEVROLET, FINISHED 11th: “Obviously we got off to a killer start and the National Guard Chevy was really good those first couple stints. On the restart I was running high and had to pedal it while Ed (Carpenter) stayed flat and drove straight through. I felt like I had the pace to get back by him, but just by the nature of the two lines we were running I was getting a lot of dirty air on the exit of the corners. I knewthat if I could keep the pressure on him I could get back by, I could see that he was struggling a little but, but I was the one that ended up getting caught out. Massively frustrating deal. I felt we had a car that was going to finish in the Top Five and I felt like we had a shot at winning this deal. I’m super frustrated for the team, cause we definitely rolled the dice with a couple things for this race and we had a chance to run up front all day. Once I got stuck a little further back, the car was still good in traffic, but then everybody else moved up on that top line. We got a couple of our laps back, but obviously not enough to get back on the lead lap there by the end.”
JAMES HINCHCLIFFE, NO. 27 TEAM GODADDY.COM ANDRETTI AUTOSPORT CHEVROLET, FINISHED 13th:   “This is one of those times when we’re all hoping that we get back to the shop and find that something was broken on the car. We had such a strong first stint, we moved up to seventh, and the guys were great in the pits and then it just fell off the wagon.  As soon as the sun went down, I’m not sure if it was just the set-up or a problem, but either way a very tough day for the Go Daddy guys. They deserve better than that. I really wanted the season to end on a high note, so for us it’s a bittersweet day. With Ryan taking the championship, it’s huge for the team, and big congrats to him and everybody on the team for working so hard all year. We’re thrilled for him.”
RYAN BRISCOE, NO. 2 IZOD TEAM PENSKE CHEVROLET, FINISHED 17th: “It was a disappointing result, the No.2 IZOD car was running really well at the start of the race. But at the end of the second stint there with Will’s crash in turn two we ran over his wing and I think it might have damaged our diffuser and we just struggled from then on throughout the night. I’m just proud of the guys, they did what they needed to do and it just didn’t go our way tonight.”
TONY KANAAN, NO. 11 GEICO/MOUSER ELECTRONICS KV RACING TECHNOLOGY CHEVROLET, FINISHED 18th:  “I was trying to go for it.  I had nothing to lose.  I was trying to win the Oval championship.  I got caught in the middle of traffic and just lost it.  It’s a shame.  We had a strong car when I was in front.   It is what it is.  Let’s move on and get ready for next year.”
ORIOL SERVIA, NO. 22 PANTHER/DREYER AND REINBOLD RACING CHEVROLET, FINISHED 19TH:  ON HIS RACE: “At the end…we struggled a little bit with the car at the beginning of the weekend. But in the race, I really liked my car. But we had something strange happen, we were having all this debris getting the radiator. We didn’t want to blow our beautiful engine, so we had to keep stopping because it was getting over heated. Our race was over then. We had to stop every 10-15 laps to clean the radiator. Strange. We had a couple of strange things this year. Filter, fuel and things that usually don’t happen. A few more DNFs than we want. We had a great season, especially since we got the Chevy power behind us, definitely.  Good season. We want much more, but we had some strong runs. Hopefully we can come back next year stronger.”
SEBASTIAN SAAVEDRA, NO. 17 AFS RACING ANDRETTI AUTOSPORT CHEVROLET, FINISHED 21st: “I had a blast, to be honest, and I think we need to focus on the positive side of this race. It was an unfortunate situation where the tire temperatures just took us out. We were doing an amazing race. We had a top-five car, but you know at the end I’m very happy to race with my teammates up-front there. And for (Ryan) Hunter-Reay, to be a part of team  that wins the championship, to be a part of that process, and just so proud of them and big congrats to Hunter-Reay. This is the beginning of something big. We’ll keep focused for next year and bring that No. 17 car back.”
RUBENS BARRICHELLO, NO. 8 BMC/EMBRASE KV RACING TECHNOLOGY CHEVROLET, FINISHED 22nd: “I enjoyed myself a lot out there.  I had a good car at the beginning and it was all going really well, but unfortunately it ended literally in fumes.  I enjoyed being back on ovals and at Fontana.  I need to thank my crew for their hard work this year a look forward to next year.”
EJ VISO, NO. 5 CITGO/PDVSA KV RACING TECHNOLOGY CHEVROLET, FINISHED 25TH:  “This was one of the most frustrating weekends of my career.  Starting with testing on Wednesday I had a car that was extremely difficult to drive because it lacked grip.  I believed at the time it was because the track was very slick especially with the downforce levels we were running.  Today I had the same feeling in the car, but I was really looking forward to the last race of the season.  I was focused and I thought we had a chance to make it into the top-six.  However, in the race I had to stop because I was lacking both front and rear grip.  We aren’t sure what caused it, but we definitely need to investigate that.”
About Chevrolet

Dyson Racing–Double Podium

Double Podium

ALTON, VA September 15, 2012 – Chris Dyson, Guy Smith and Johnny Mowlem finished second overall and second in P1 at the first ever American Le Mans Series race here at Virginia International Raceway. Michael Marsal and Mark Peterson made it a double P1 podium for Dyson Racing with their third place P1 finish after four hours of racing at the American Le Mans Series VIR 240.

The #16 Mazda-powered ModSpace/Thetford car qualified second and ran second for 92 laps of the 135 lap race. Chris Dyson started the car and drove the first 45 minute stint. Johnny Mowlem did a yeoman’s middle stint of over two hours and handed it over Guy Smith who took the checkered flag.

Dyson commented that “at the end of the day we did not have the pace today to really contend so our strategy was to execute and make sure we got both cars home in the points, which we accomplished. We introduced the Flybrid KERS hybrid system this weekend and our first impressions are very favorable. It is in its early days yet, and we will continue to optimize it for the Petit (Le Mans).”

The #20 Dyson Racing entry had a more eventful race. It spun at the first turn on the first lap and eventually retired towards race end with a heat-damaged wiring harness. It completed more than 70% of the race and earned third place P1 points. Mark Patterson started the race. “The front two cars went side by side into the first turn,” said Patterson. “I did not want to run into them and affect the championship race. The brakes and tires were cold and I spun around slowly and with the close quarters at the beginning of a race, a couple of cars made contact with us.” Patterson brought the car in and the crew replaced the front nose and rear clip and resumed with a solid double stint. Mark’s co-driver Michael Marsal commended the team on getting the car back out quickly. Marsal added “it was a pretty decent race car when I got into it after Mark’s first two hours in the car and I just wanted to do well for the team and get back as much time I could. Mark drove a very fast stint and my hats off to him for his first time in the car.”

The 2012 ALMS season ends in five weeks’ time at the ten-hour, thousand miles, Petit Le Mans. “The championship is still to be decided and anything can happen,” noted Guy Smith. “We are the current champions and we will take the fight to the Muscle Milk team at Petit.” Chris Dyson added, “We kept the championship alive today and we will go to Petit and continue on with relentless execution, and push for a strong finish to the year.”

Line’s Strong Performance Earns Second Starting Position in Charlotte

 Line’s Strong Performance Earns Second Starting Position in Charlotte
Event:  Fifth annual NHRA Nationals

Location: zMAX Dragway, Concord, N.C.

Day/Date: Saturday, September 15, 2012

Reigning NHRA Full Throttle Champion Jason Line completed a very consistent and productive qualifying effort on Saturday, capturing the second starting position for Sunday’s final eliminations of the 5th annual NHRA Nationals in Concord, N.C. In each of the four sessions at zMAX Dragway, Line’s Summit Racing Chevrolet Camaro was among the best of the “Factory Hot Rods”, including being the quickest in the first and final runs, allowing him to amass nine valuable bonus points, worth almost a half of an elimination round win.

Despite this solid performance, Line believed further improvement was not only possible but necessary as he looked to score his first career win at the “Bellagio of Drag Strips.”

“We made four runs in qualifying with this Summit Racing Camaro, which not only produced solid elapsed times but also allowed us to earn several bonus points, which can make a difference in the Countdown,” said Line. “However, even though we have made progress with these cars we still have some work to do to get to the level of performance we need. For example, as nice as those runs might have seemed from the outside, I would not consider any of them to be a good clean run.  We’re getting closer, but we’re not there.

“We also have some work to do with Greg’s (teammate Anderson) car, especially after he blew the motor in tonight’s final session.  Still, if we all do our jobs correctly, and that includes the driver, I believe we will have two cars capable of winning the race.  However, there will be several other teams equally capable of winning, so it will be up to us to do a better job of execution.  The most important thing is that we get off to strong start in the Countdown, and there is no better way to do that than by taking home the Wally, which is what we plan to do.”

Anderson Qualifies Third in Charlotte the Hard Way

Anderson Qualifies Third in Charlotte the Hard Way

Event:  Fifth annual NHRA Nationals

Location: zMAX Dragway, Concord, N.C.

Day/Date: Saturday, September 15, 2012

The second day of qualifying at the 5th annual NHRA Nationals proved to be quite the experience for Greg Anderson and his Summit Racing team.  With temperatures in the Concord, N.C. area rising and the third qualifying session not scheduled to begin until after noon, there was little chance of challenging for the pole position.  However, Saturday’s runs still proved valuable, as they would provide tuning information which could be used for Sunday’s final eliminations.

After opening with two solid runs on the first day, Anderson came back with a competitive 6.585-second, 211.30 mph on his first attempt on Saturday.  However he was not as fortunate on in the final qualifying session, as smoke erupted from under his car almost immediately due to a rare engine failure, forcing him to shut off early and coast across the line.  Fortunately, his 6.560-second time from Friday night remained his run of record, earning him the third starting position and a first-round encounter with Shane Gray.

“I’m sure we made a few highlight reels with our engine issues in the fourth session, which is never a good thing,” said Anderson. “At KB Racing, we take pride in our engines, and when we lose one like that it’s extremely disappointing.  We have plenty of them, so we will certainly regroup. We’ll put another one in tomorrow and go race, seeing if we can do a better job than we did today.

‘These Summit Racing Camaros are acting like they want to run, but we’re just not getting clean starts. We’re going to keep digging until we get it right in low gear.  Once we do that, I think we can run with any car out there.  It’s just a matter of doing it. Obviously we have a lot of thinking to do overnight, but we have a chance, which all you can ask for.  We’ll come out swinging tomorrow morning, hoping we made the correct changes and run well.

“We’ll forget about the engine blow up for tonight because there’s nothing we can do about it.  When we get back to the shop on Monday, we’ll shed a tear or two and figure out what we need to do better so it doesn’t happen again.  But for right now, we’ll just put another engine in and try and get the chassis set-up right.”

Schatz Takes Advantage in Traffic for 10th World of Outlaws Triumph

Schatz Takes Advantage in Traffic for 10th World of Outlaws Triumph
The 6th annual Arnold Motor Supply Shootout win gives him a 101-point title lead
SPENCER, Iowa – Sept. 14, 2012 – Sometimes a little luck goes a long way.
For Donny Schatz, everything is going the right way. Schatz overcame a poor qualifying performance to capitalize in traffic on Friday at Clay County Fair Speedway, where he claimed his third trophy at the 6th annual Arnold Motor Supply Shootout.

It was his 10th World of Outlaws Sprint Car Series feature victory of the season and eighth consecutive top five, which helped extend his championship points advantage to a season-high 101 points.

“I hope it’s not the peak,” he said. “We’ve got a lot of racing left this year. There’s a long way to go. There’s a lot of season left and we’re doing really good right now, so we want to keep ourself on a roll.”

Schatz, who won the event in 2007 and 2008, began the night by qualifying 18th. He missed the inversion in the heat race, but caught a couple of breaks after starting on the inside of the third row.

Terry McCarl, who started one row in front of Schatz, was involved in an opening-lap crash. That moved Schatz up one row and after polesitter Scott Winters was called for starting too early, Schatz again advanced one row to take the green flag on the pole.

He finished second in his heat race, which gave him a spot in the dash. Schatz passed three cars in the dash and continued to move forward at the start of the feature.

Schatz quickly advanced into the top five while Lucas Wolfe jumped to the early lead from the pole. Craig Dollansky, who entered the event 72 points behind Schatz in the championship chase, had the quickest car early and he rode the cushion to the lead as he exited turn four on the sixth lap.

Traffic came into the equation two laps later and Wolfe was able to maneuver to the lead while Dollansky was slowed on the bottom in turn four. However, Dollansky regained the top spot on the ensuing lap and was in control until traffic claimed its first victim.

Jody Rosenboom spun in turn four on lap 17 as Dollansky was about to put him a lap down. Dollansky swerved to the top and tried to sneak between Rosenboom’s stalling car and the wall, but he ended up smashed between.

Dollansky gave up the lead during the caution as he headed to the work area to fix the damage. Wolfe inherited the lead and following a failed restart when Kerry Madsen flipped off the track in turn two, Schatz advanced past Jason Sides for the runner-up position on lap 19.

Wolfe reached traffic on lap 25 and while Schatz closed the gap, Wolfe maintained the lead as he picked off a handful of cars. But on lap 29, traffic took its second victim. Wolfe was trapped on the bottom behind Chuck McGillivray and Davey Heskin, who were both already a lap down and were battling for 19    th place.

“I just made a mistake going to the bottom and followed two lapped cars that were having their own race,” Wolfe said. “They both kind of missed the bottom and slowed down just enough that I had to wait on them in the corner.

“It was disappointing to lose so close to the end. Obviously it’s hard enough to get in that position and make it the whole night there, to lose it on the last two laps. But it’s hard to complain when Schatz beats you. They’ve been on a roll lately.”

Schatz took advantage and pulled even as they exited turn two. His momentum carried him into the lead in turn three and Wolfe was unable to close within a car length on the final lap.

“He got caught in the wrong part of the race track and I was in the right,” said Schatz, who has recorded seven wins and 17 top fives in the last 19 points races. “I managed to squeak on by there and didn’t have much race left from there.”

Steve Kinser made a late rally to round out the podium, earning his 25th top five of the season.

“I found me a little different spot than everybody else was running,” he said. “Actually it was just through the middle. I just started momentuming the middle and got pretty fast actually.”

Sides finished fourth and Cody Darrah drove from 11th to fifth. Joey Saldana charged from 14th to sixth, Jac Haudenschild placed seventh and Chad Kemenah earned the KSE Hard Charger Award for advancing from 20th to eighth. Justin Henderson ended ninth and Kaley Gharst rounded out the top 10.

Rookie Newgarden Stars in Qualifying at Fontana

Rookie Newgarden Stars in Qualifying at Fontana

After missing one race due to injury, IZOD IndyCar Series rookie Josef Newgarden led the Hondapowered
field Friday at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California, posting the fourth-fastest speed in
qualifying for Saturday night’s season-ending MAVTV 500.

Newgarden’s qualifying run was his best of 2012, and comes after breaking a finger in a crash with
Sebastien Bourdais at the GoPro Indy Grand Prix in Sonoma, California, last month. As a result of the
injury, Newgarden missed the Grand Prix of Baltimore two weeks ago, but was cleared to drive his Sarah
Fisher Hartman Racing Honda Dallara earlier this week.

Scott Dixon and Alex Tagliani qualified just behind Newgarden, in fifth and sixth, respectively; while
Graham Rahal qualified 11th in his Service Central Chip Ganassi Racing Honda Dallara. Saturday night’s
season-ending MAVTV 500 starts at 5:30 p.m. EDT, with live television coverage on the NBC Sports

Josef Newgarden (#67 Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing Honda) 4th quickest in qualifying, best
qualifying performance of 2012: “We were pretty flat out [during the qualifying run], and maybe we
could have trimmed out the car a little bit more. We weren’t sure about the temperature, and didn’t want
to risk too much. Coming into the race, we talked a lot about how I want a car that’s going to be
comfortable, reliable and consistent for the entire race. That’s what we’re working on, we want to have a
good race car that can run a lot of laps. If we have that, then we can run and compete up front.”

Line Starts Strong at zMAX, Sits Second on Friday

 Line Starts Strong at zMAX, Sits Second on Friday
Event:  Fifth annual NHRA Nationals

Location: zMAX Dragway, Concord, N.C.

Day/Date: Friday, September 14, 2012

The first day of qualifying for the 5th annual NHRA Nationals in Concord, N.C. proved to be a very productive one for Jason Line and the Summit Racing team.  Having spent numerous days testing over the last few weeks, the team arrived at their home track confident that they had started to get a better handle on their race car.  However, they also knew that the true proof of their labor would come when they ran against their competition at a national event.

Fortunately, any doubts were quickly allayed, as Line blasted out of the box in the first session at zMAX Dragway with a 6.570-second, 211.63 mph pass, best in the Pro Stock category.  He then came back with an even better run in the afternoon session at 6.554-seconds, 211.13 mph to slot second with two attempts remaining on Saturday.  Naturally disappointed at not remaining atop the leaderboard, the two-time champion believed the battle was still not over.

“It’s a good way to start our weekend,” said Line. “The last few months have not been kind to us, and we haven’t gotten many of the bonus qualifying points.  I earned five of the little points today, which I haven’t done in quite some time, and just as important, those were five points someone else didn’t get.

“It’s a good starting spot, and I feel like we have a little bit better handle on a baseline, which is something we’ve struggled with for a while, which is quite encouraging.  Do I feel like we can go faster? I certainly think so, but I’m sure our competitors will say that as well.  I think we have a shot at the pole in the morning, but as tight as the competition is right now, four other cars do as well.  We certainly have our work cut out for us, and it will come down to whoever makes the best run.  It’s going to be a dogfight.”

Third on Friday in Charlotte, Anderson Pleased with Opening Day Performance

 Third on Friday in Charlotte, Anderson Pleased with Opening Day Performance 

Event:  Fifth annual NHRA Nationals

Location: zMAX Dragway, Concord, N.C.

Day/Date: Friday, September 14, 2012

After testing his Summit Racing Camaro extensively at various tracks over the last few weeks, Greg Anderson was extremely anxious to get the 5th annual NHRA Nationals in Concord, N.C. underway on Friday to see how the progress they seemed to have made during that time would stack up against their competition. They did not have to wait long, as Anderson posted a 6.574-second elapsed time and 211.36 mph top speed, fourth-quickest among the 18 attempting to qualify.

However, Anderson and the KB Racing crew were far from done, as they came back in the evening session at zMAX Dragway and covered the quarter-mile in 6.560-seconds with a top speed of 211.66 mph to sit third midway through the qualifying procedure.  Although pleased with his opening-day performance, the three-time Charlotte winner admitted there was still room for improvement.

“Overall, it wasn’t a bad day,” said Anderson. “We really didn’t make what we would consider clean runs today, and we still ran pretty well, which shows the potential of these Summit Racing Camaros.  We can run right with them and even grab the pole if we make clean runs, which is something new for us as we continue to develop these race cars.  We’ve gained some performance with these cars, now we just need to match them to the race conditions.

“I think there is a lot of room left, which is good news, especially since both our cars are in the top three.  We feel pretty good, but we still need to do a better job of executing, getting the round pegs in the round holes and the square pegs in the square holes.  When we do that we should be in really good shape.  Tomorrow’s another day and I still think we can qualify 1-2 if we do a good job, so we’ll see what we can do.”

Chevy Racing–MAVTV 500 Qualifying Interviews

Marco Andretti Wins the Pole at Auto Club Speedway; Ryan Briscoe Makes it Chevrolet Front Row for Final Race of 2012 Season
FONTANA, Calif. (September 14, 2012) – Marco Andretti, No. 26 Team RC Cola Andretti Autosport Chevrolet, won the pole for the MAVTV 500, and will lead the 26-car field to the green flag in Saturday night’s IZOD IndyCar Series season finale at Auto Club Speedway.  Andretti’s two-lap cumulative time of 1:06.6455 with an average speed of 216.069 m.p.h. captured the 10th pole of the season for Chevrolet. It is the first pole position this season for Andretti, and his first at the Fontana, California track.
Ryan Briscoe, No. 2 IZOD Team Penske Chevrolet, turned in the second quickest average speed to make it an all-Chevrolet IndyCar V6 front row.  It is the fifth top-two qualifying effort of the season for Briscoe.
Championship contenders Will Power, No. 12 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet, and Ryan Hunter-Reay, No. 28 Team DHL/Sun Drop Citrus Soda Andretti Autosport Chevrolet, qualified third and 17th respectively, but each will be assessed a 10 grid position penalty for unapproved engine changes prior to the start of the 250-lap/500-mile race on the 2.0-mile track.
In total, seven Team Chevy drivers were in the top-10 of the final qualifying order. In addition to Andretti, Briscoe and Power, Chevrolet IndyCar V6 powered drivers Tony Kanaan, JR Hildebrand, Ed Carpenter and Helio Castroneves landed in the top-10 at the end of the qualifying session.
Josef Newgarden (Honda) and Scott Dixon(Honda) completed the top-five in today’s qualifying.
The MAVTV 500 IndyCar season finale is scheduled to start at 5:45 p.m. PT (8:45 p.m. ET) Saturday night with live television coverage on NBC Sports Network.
The live radio coverage will air on the IMS Radio Network on SiriusXM (XM 94 and Sirius 212). In addition, IndyCar live timing and scoring with the radio broadcast can be found at

Dyson Racing–Prototype Sports Cars in Their Natural Habitat

Prototype Sports Cars in Their Natural Habitat
ALTON, VA September 14, 2012 – Guy Smith was a front-row qualifier today for the inaugural American Le Mans Series VIR 240. The #16 Mazda-powered ModSpace/Thetford entry will start in second place for the four-hour race here in the pastoral hills of northern Virginia.
Chris Dyson qualified third in the #20 Dyson Racing entry driven by Michael Marsal and Mark Patterson this weekend. “I will start the 16 car and will only get points in that car, but with this being a four-hour race, I will be in reserve if needed on our sister car,” explained Dyson. “I have to say it is like getting back with an old friend. I have not driven last year’s car in over eight months, but credit goes to Vince Wood and the guys who have done a really good job of
Click for More evolving the set up. Mike and Mark should have a great run tomorrow as they have been remarkably fast and consistent all weekend.”
“The driver in me would have liked to been on pole, but we have a car that is comfortable to drive and will be benign on this high speed course tomorrow,” said Smith. “We will make sure we have a clean race, execute on the pits stops and driver changes and think in terms of the championship.” Dyson Racing is the reigning ALMS Champions. After eight races with two to go, the team is nine points out of first in the driver’s championship and five out in the team championship. Dyson drivers occupy second through sixth in the championship tally.
Joining Dyson Racing this weekend for the first time is Mark Patterson in the #20 car. “I have raced here probably a dozen times in cars ranging from Star Mazda to Daytona Prototypes,” noted Patterson. “But this is the first time in a P1 car. What an experience! It literally changes the track. It is a fast track, 170 mph on the back straight, but the car is good with good speed in the tough stuff.” Michael Marsal will be co-driving with Patterson tomorrow. He won his first P1 victory two weekends ago in Baltimore and has finished on the podium in all his races for Dyson Racing. “I have never had more fun driving a race car than this weekend,” added Marsal.
Returning to the Dyson line-up is Johnny Mowlem who will share driver duties with Dyson and Smith in the 16 car. “This is an amazing track. It is very fast and the speed differential between us and the slower cars through the Hurry Ups at the top of the hill is phenomenal – it is almost like an arcade game out there,” commented Mowlem. “We are pulling close to four g’s going through that sequence of corners, the quickest set of corners I have ever driven. It is like the famous Eau Rouge corner on Belgium’s F1 track but having an extra Eau Rouge right after it.”
Dyson Racing is running the Flybrid KERS hybrid system for the first time at VIR. Guy Smith noted that “it is in its early stages yet and we have just started developing the system. As a driver, it does not really feel any different than normal which is a compliment to the guys at Flybrid. I have not had to change my driving style or car set up to accommodate it, so that is good credit to them.”


SEPTEMBER 14, 2012
MARCO ANDRETTI, NO. 26 TEAM RC COLA ANDRETTI AUTOSPORT CHEVROLET, POLE WINNER: ON HIS QUALIFYING: “Pretty good. First lap 218 (m.p.h.). We were showing some in practice, but I didn’t want to stick it in the wall in practice. And, that is what you have to do, you have to risk sticking it in the wall to go flat (full throttle). I got it flat on the first lap, but the second lap, I had a big understeer, and then a snap. So there was a little on the table for the second lap, so that concerned me about the pole run.”
CONGRATULATIONS ON THE POLE, DOES THAT HELP GOING INTO THE FINAL RACE? “Yeah, thanks man. It means a lot. Just what we have been going through this year. Me in particular just been a very trying year for me and my career. It’s good for the confidence, but we still got to get a race car under us tonight which I think we can do. But credit to the whole RC team, but the whole Andretti Autosport is just taking a huge step up this year. And let the best man win tomorrow.”
ON YOUR SEASON: “Toughest part of my career. It is inspiring me to work harder outside the track and work harder in the car and still try to see what I need in the set up to get me quick, because I am not going to be quick on these tracks. And a little bit of leading luck will help.”
RYAN BRISCOE, NO. 2 IZOD TEAM PENSKE CHEVROLET, QUALIFIED 2ND: ON HIS QUALIFYING: “It was good. On my warm-up lap, I run the limiter up in turn three on that bump, so I went to the top gear which wasn’t ideal. It was sort of dragging around the track, but I didn’t hit the limiter. I went into qualifying saying there are two things I need to do. I need to be flat (full throttle), and I need to not be in the limiter. So I just went to the tall gear, and it was a bit sluggish. But the car was good. I was able to hold a pretty good line around the whole track. We just missed it. It is good. In a race like this, it doesn’t matter where you start, but the prestige of pole is always something. It would have been nice.”
WILL POWER, NO. 12 VERIZON TEAM PENSKE CHEVROLET, QUALIFIED 3RD:  ON QUALIFYING: “It was very unpredictable.  I was the first of my team’s cars, too.  Wind changes, the whole track changes.  I had totally different balance to what I had all weekend.  Yeah, I mean, man, I got hard limiter both laps down the back straight on a bump.  Yup, starting grid.  Sometimes I’m glad when I start on pole.  Every time, if I start on pole, it’s bad.  Start back in the pack, it’s great.  Hopefully that’s true here (laughter).  So, yeah, it is what it is.  It’s a 500-mile race.  It would have been nice to get the point.  Yeah, we’ll see tomorrow.  Just hang in there, just stay there and hopefully have a shot.”
ON STRATEGY FOR THE RACE: “We are focused on the things we can control. Things are out of your control in the race. We are going to do what we can, and see how it ends up.”
TONY KANAAN, NO. 11 GEICO/MOUSER ELECTRONICS KV RACING TECHNOLOGY CHEVROLET, QUALIFIED 7TH: “I had a decent qualifying run.  I am little concerned about the race.   In my opinion the car is a little sketchy on the downforce that we have chosen for the race, but I respect IndyCar’s decision on that and we will make the best out of it.”
JR HILDEBRAND, NO. 4 NATIONAL GUARD/PANTHER RACING CHEVROLET, QUALIFIED 8TH: ON QUALIFYING: “It was pretty good. We took a little bit of a different strategy here in qualifying. It was good for us to work on some things out there. The car was good. The biggest problem I had was with the bumps down the backstraight. Our gearing was a little high, and I just got stuck in the rev limiter for a long time because it was so bumpy. So that brought our speed down probably a little bit. But, with some of the grid penalties and that kind of stuff, we will move up so as far as for the starting grid tomorrow, we are looking pretty shiny right now.”
ON TONIGHT’S PRACTICE: “Those first couple of hours when the sun is going down is actually when it is going to be the toughest. As much as we don’t want to have to do it two days in a row like that, it’s good for us to get some practice for us to get some practice for Saturday’s race for those first couple of hours of the race, for sure.”
ED CARPENTER, NO. 20 FUZZY’S ULTRA PREMIUM VODKA ED CARPENTER RACING CHEVROLET, QUALIFIED 9TH: “After our warm-up lap of 214 (m.p.h.), I thought we might have a shot to beat Marco’s (Andretti) speed.  But we built a little too much understeer in the car and I had to lift in turn two. It is fun here though.  I‘m enjoying this track.  I thought it would be bumpier than back in 2005 when we were here before.  But it’s smooth than Kentucky.  The (chassis) package for this track is hard but I like it.  It’s a better package than what we ran at Texas.   If we were going to race in conditions like this with the speed, it wouldn’t be good.  But the track will cool off for Saturday night’s race.  I think the fans will be happy with the racing for the 500.  The track temperature was 140 degrees.  That is hot.  For the race, the track will cool down and produce a lot of grip for the cars.  This track is tricky for everyone up and down the pit lane.  Of all of the places we’ve run this year, I think there are more racing lanes here.  You will see guys run on the white stripe and others up against the wall in the race.  This will be my first 500-mile race other than Indy.  I was thinking about going and talking to some of the guys who raced 500 miles here before.  It’s different than Indy.  Indy is intense.  But you have a 5/8-mile straight to take a breath.  You don’t get that luxury here.  It will be a long night.”      
HELIO CASTRONEVES, NO. 3 AUTO CLUB OF SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA TEAM PENSKE CHEVROLET, QUALIFIED 10TH: ON QUALIFYING: “Qualifying did not go the way we expected. The speed we felt was a little bit better, especially what we had in practice. Conditions are very difficult for everybody; over 100 degrees.  When you have to do an average speed (two laps of qualifying) is becoming very difficult. What happened is the first lap was a tremendous push in turn one. I adjusted myself in the second lap, and we were able to gain two mile-an-hour from one lap to another. It is what it is. We have a great car. The Auto Club of Southern California car is actually very fast during race conditions. We are looking forward to tomorrow.”
ON TONIGHT’S PRACTICE TO GAIN MORE KNOWLEDGE ON RACE CONDITIONS: “We had a great run in the few days of testing, so we feel that we are in good shape. I have to say the Chevys are running really strong here. Hopefully the last race of the season, we get another win for Chevy.”
JAMES HINCHCLIFFE, NO. 27 TEAM GODADDY.COM ANDRETTI AUTOSPORT CHEVROLET, QUALIFIED 12TH: ON QUALIFYING: “It’s a scorcher out here today and it’s going to be a hot race, even at night. It’s very difficult track conditions with the track being this hot and we haven’t done a whole lot of qualifying-sim work. We’ve been working a lot on the race car which I think is going to be important. We need to make sure that Ryan (Hunter-Reay) has the best car – we all have the best cars that we can possibly have when we roll on the grid tomorrow. We have four cars to try and work on different setups and make sure that all of us, but especially the 28, are ready to go out there and do well and try to bring this title back home to Andretti Autosport.”
RUBENS BARRICHELLO, NO. 8 BMC/EMBRASE KV RACING TECHNOLOGY CHEVROLET, QUALIFIED 13TH: ON QUALIFYING: “I am happy with my result.  We are obviously very lucky because so many dri
vers have got penalties so I have moved up some places.  This morning, I had very little running as we were trying lots of things, so I ended up going blind into qualifying with a totally different car.  But, I am happy.   I think we have done okay and will now work on our race setup for tomorrow.”
KATHERINE LEGGE, NO. 6 TRUECAR DRAGON RACING CHEVROLET, QUALIFIED 14TH: ON HER QUALIFYING: “It was solid considering we weren’t very happy with the car in the test. The team did a great job. They did a lot of changes. My Chevy is feeling fast, and racey. We had a bit of a bauble on the second lap otherwise I think we would have been well inside the top-10. I think we are looking good for the race. The track here changes so much here temperature-wise, we don’t really don’t know where we are at for tomorrow. I think it is invaluable to be able to practice tonight.”
RYAN HUNTER-REAY, NO. 28 TEAM DHL/SUN DROP CITRUS SODA ANDRETTI AUTOSPORT CHEVROLET, QUALIFIED 17TH: ON QUALIFYING: “Not a great qualifying run for us but it’s a 500-mile race so really not that bummed about it. We just hadn’t dialed our qualifying trim in with the DHL/Sun Drop car and that caught us out a bit. We missed the balance and (the car) took off on me a bit there at the exit. It was definitely hard to put a good two laps together. We’ve been focusing on the race though – that’s the big thing, we haven’t done any qualifying runs today so it’s something that we just haven’t really put a lot of time into. Tonight we’ll go out and work on race trim and get these four Andretti cars up front.”
ORIOL SERVIA, NO. 22 PANTHER/DREYER AND REINBOLD RACING CHEVROLET, QUALIFIED 18TH: ON QUALIFYING: “Qualifying was better than this morning. This morning we were not happy with car. We actually made big changes. We put in the same setup as my teammate (JR Hildebrand) which was great to be able to do that. The car was better, but still was a little too loose. I almost lost it out of turn two, like big time. I couldn’t even be flat. So for not being flat, I thought the speed was pretty good, We can fix it tonight.
WHAT MAKES TURN TWO SO DIFFICULT? “The difference is there is banking here. Then you go through the corner and then there is more banking. The backstraight has zero banking. So it goes from having banking to really disappearing while you are still in the corner. So all of a sudden, you still want to turn, but there is not banking and the car is not going to turn the same way. If ever it is going to go, it is going to go there.”
SEBASTIAN SAAVEDRA, NO. 17 AFS RACING ANDRETTI AUTOSPORT CHEVROLET, QUALIFIED 21ST: ON QUALIFYING: “The day started exactly like we wanted. We did a great job in both practice sessions. We qualified on the pole for Firestone Indy Lights, which was great. We want to end the season on a high note. We just need to continue working and improving the Indy car because tomorrow will be a long race. I don’t see our INDYCAR qualifying being as important as Indy Lights is, since it will be so long. I believe jumping from one car to the other does mess with your head a little bit. I think I should have improved a little bit in the Indy car, but I am comfortable to bring the car home and focus on the race.”
EJ VISO, NO. 5 CITGO/PDVSA KV RACING TECHNOLOGY CHEVROLET, QUALIFIED 22ND: “We didn’t really plan on being fast in qualifying.  We went out with a very safe setup.  I don’t feel comfortable on this track.  It is extremely bumpy and irregular.  I feel that the drivers are extremely exposed and I don’t blame Mike Conway for deciding not to race here.  It is going to be a long race and we are just focused on have a very stable platform.  That is all that really matters.  You just have to hang in there and finish the race.  It is going to be very challenging.  If the series doesn’t decide to add more downforce I won’t race.  It’s tough to understand where the challenge ends and the stupidity begins.”

Test Sessions Have Anderson Amped about Start of the Countdown

Test Sessions Have Anderson Amped about Start of the Countdown

Mooresville, N.C., September 13, 2012 – This weekend, the Full Throttle Drag Racing Series will begin its six-race Countdown to the Championship with the 5th annual NHRA Nationals in Charlotte, N.C., and as far as Summit Racing driver Greg Anderson is concerned, the playoffs could not start at a better location.  Known as the “Bellagio of Drag Strips”, zMAX Dragway is a short drive away from the KB Racing shop in Mooresville, offering team members a respite from their hectic travel schedule as well as extra time to prepare for this first of four consecutive races.

“I believe it is a huge bonus, not only for Greg Anderson, but the entire Summit Racing team, to have the Countdown start here at zMAX Dragway,” said Anderson.  “We love this race and this track.  It is a tremendous facility where we’ve spent quite a bit of time testing there and have developed a huge comfort factor.  It’s a place that we’ve either learned so well or it just seems to suit our program that we definitely seem to run well there.

“Everything about this race is tremendous.  We’ll have a lot of our shop employees and their families who don’t normally come out to the track on hand to cheer us on, as well as (team owners) Ken and Judy Black who made the trip out from the West Coast.  Their presence always puts a smile on our faces and we love nothing more than to do well in front of them.  We’ll also have a lot of friends and neighbors coming out, giving us our own personal cheering section.

“So as you can see, we have a lot of reasons to look forward to the weekend.  Best of all, it’s playoff time, where the stakes are higher, and everything seems to ramp up.  We feel like we’ve upped our game, so we can’t wait to let the clutch out on Friday and see what we can do, starting the Countdown on the right foot.”

The one question mark seemingly facing Anderson and his KB Racing teammate Jason Line entering this year’s playoff was their race cars.  As the newest chassis among any of the competitors who qualified for the 2012 Countdown to One, the talented tandem had admittedly struggled to get a handle on the tune-up for most of the summer.  However, having finally had a chance to get in some extensive testing over the last few weeks, Anderson is confident their sleek new Camaros will now have the performance to match their looks.

“We tested at zMAX last week with our Summit Racing Camaros and ran very well, so we are expecting to run just as well when we go back there this weekend,” said Anderson.  “I know it’s been a battle to get these new cars up to speed, but we’ve been running the wheels off these cars since coming home from the West Coast, and I believe we’re starting to see the fruits of our labor.

“We feel like we’ve made progress and gained some performance to where we think we’ll have our best chance in the last 3-4 months to win an event.  Are we going to go out and dominate the race? Probably not, but we are definitely going to give AJ, Mike, Erica and everyone else a run for their money.  Of course it takes some racing luck and proper execution with the car as well as the driver being perfect, but I think we’re finally getting close to getting back in our groove. Let’s just say we’re expecting a big weekend.”

Strong Start Essential to Line’s Championship Defense

Strong Start Essential to Line’s Championship Defense

Mooresville, N.C., September 13, 2012 – One year ago, Summit Racing driver Jason Line came into zMAX Dragway for the first race of the Countdown to the Championship and immediately staked his claim for the title, powering from the No. 1 position to a runner-up finish. It was the start of a series of three races where Line would score two wins and set both ends of the national record, essentially scoring a knockout blow en route to his second Full Throttle Championship.

As the world’s best quarter-milers prepare to return to the Tar Heel State this weekend for the 5th annual NHRA Nationals and the start of the six-race 2012 championship run, Line would naturally like to duplicate that showing, although he admits that this year’s competition might make it a little tougher.  Even so, he was quick to stress the importance of having a strong run in this opening encounter.

“Getting off to a good start in this first race of the Countdown is absolutely huge, especially this year, when the competition is tighter than it ever has been,” said Line.  “Defending our title is going to be tough, with every round being important considering how well AJ (Allen Johnson), Mike (Edwards), my teammate Greg (Anderson) and Erica (Enders) are running.

“The good news is that we’re getting closer with our Summit Racing Camaros, and this KB Racing team is more than capable of delivering another championship performance.  But to do that, we will need to do a better job than we have at the last few races.  At this point in the season, if you want to stay in contention, there is absolutely no room for error, so we’ll need to be on top of our game right out of the box this weekend in Charlotte.”

In order to accomplish his goal, Line will need to add zMAX Dragway to his list of many successes.  Located a short half-hour’s drive from the KB Racing team’s shop in Mooresville, it is considered their home track, a fact not lost on Line, who appreciates any benefits they can gain during a drive to what they hope will be another championship.

“zMAX Dragway is one of the tracks where a win has eluded us, so maybe this will be the year we finally bring it home, and it couldn’t come at a better time,” said Line.  “I enjoy any time we get to race there simply because it’s the nicest facility on tour and it’s only a short drive away from our shop.  It’s always fun to race at home and sleep in your own bed, and any time you can avoid traveling is a bonus in itself.

“Last year we were able to deliver an early knockout punch, but this year will be different because there are more good cars all capable of winning.  I think it’s going to be a battle that will go down to the last race in Pomona.  Fortunately, we seem to be gaining ground on our Summit Racing Camaros and I believe we have a good tune-up for Charlotte, so we should be good and I like our chances for doing well there.  If we do it will then be a matter of carrying that momentum through the remaining five races and seeing where we stand when the dust settles.”

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