VERIZON INDYCAR SERIES
SHELL PENNZOIL GRAND PRIX OF HOUSTON
MD ANDERSON CANCER CENTER SPEEDWAY
TEAM CHEVY DRIVER POST RACE TRANSCRIPT
JUNE 29, 2014
CHARLIE KIMBALL LEADS CHEVROLET INDYCAR V6 CONTINGENT IN RACE NO. 2 AT GRAND PRIX OF HOUSTON
HOUSTON, Texas – June 29, 2014 – Under blistering hot conditions at the Shell and Pennzoil Grand Prix of Houston, Charlie Kimball carried the Chevrolet IndyCar V6 banner by fighting his way to his third top-five finish of the Verizon IndyCar season in his No. Levemir Flex Touch Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet.
His fourth-place finish in enabled him to move up one position in the overall standings to 15th.
Sebastien Bourdais, No. 11 Team Mistic KVSH Racing Chevrolet, also notched his third 2014 top-five finish in Sunday’s race coming home fifth. His performance elevated Bourdais up two spots in the standings from 10th to eighth.
Team Penske driver Juan Pablo Montoya was looking to put his No. 2 Verizon Chevrolet into victory lane after coming close in Saturday’s race #1. Montoya battled from 14th to the top-five but was shuffled out in heavy traffic late in the race. He finished 7th in the event, and remains fifth in points.
His Team Penske teammate and series point leader Will Power, No. 12 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet, suffered a suspension failure with just a few laps remaining and came away with a disappointing 11th place finish after making a valiant run to third place. Power still holds the overall point standings by 39 markers over Helio Castroneves.
Castroneves, who placed No. 3 Pennzoil Ultra Premium Team Penske Chevrolet on the pole, led twice for race-high 47 laps. His dominating run ended on lap 48 when on-track contract damaged his car beyond repair.
The next race on the Verizon IndyCar Series will be on Sunday, July 6th at Pocono Raceway. Live television coverage will start at Noon on NBC Sports and can be heard live on IMS Radio Network XM 209/Sirius 213 as well as IndyCar.com
CHARLIE KIMBALL, NO. 83 LEVEMIR FLEX TOUCH CHIP GANASSI RACING CHEVROLET, FINISHED 4TH: “The No. 83 Levemir® FlexTouch® Chevrolet was quick – I kind of like it in the Levemir® FlexTouch® green. The Novo Nordisk guys did an awesome job in pit lane and the Chevy guys have been working really hard all weekend to give us an engine that’s drivable and gets good mileage. Overall I’m really happy with a top-five finish and we just drove the wheels off of it when we could.”
SEBASTIEN BOURDAIS, NO. 11 TEAM MISTIC KVSH CHEVROLETE, FINISHED 5TH: HOW HOT WAS IT OUT THERE; YOU LOOK PRETTY SPENT? “That is the way I react to heat; I dehydrate pretty easily. I hung in there, but I just take my time on the way down.”
HOW WAS THE RACE CAR? “The car was pretty good. We had a different strategy. We started on primes (tires), and we lost a position or two but, at the end of the day, it was working out pretty nicely for us because we went all the way to the end of the window, and we ended up P4, so I was very happy. Then on reds (tires) we were slowly catching the leaders a little bit, and there was that first safety car that bunched everybody up, and I knew the first lap on the restart I was going to have an advantage on options. And I did, and I passed a couple of cars. Then when I got to Helio (Castroneves) Simon (Pagenaud) both went to the inside, I got to them, I moved to the right, and when I got a wheel a little bit over, then he decided to take that line as well. That is a real shame because that destroyed a chance for us to win, and destroyed a chance for him to put up strong points. It is what it is, but we’ll keep at it, and see when we can score a win with that Mistic machine.”
JUAN PABLO MONTOYA, NO. 2 VERIZON TEAM PENSKE CHEVROLET, FINISHED 7TH: “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.”
RYAN BRISCOE, NO. 8 NTT DATA CHIP GANASSI RACING CHEVROLET, FINISHED 8TH: “It feels good to come out of this doubleheader in Houston with a top 10 finish. This series is just so competitive and it’s a fight to the finish at every race. This one wasn’t any different and we were able to come from 15th and get an eighth-place finish. It’s still not exactly where NTT DATA Racing wants to be but we’re getting closer.”
TONY KANAAN, NO. 10 TARGET CHIP GANASSI RACING CHEVROLET, FINISHED 10TH: “Not a bad day I guess, but we need to be more competitive and run toward the front with the Target cars. It was hot again today and you really had to be in shape for two straight days of racing in these conditions. There was some really exciting racing out there and hope the fans here in Houston enjoyed it today.”
WILL POWER, NO. 12 VERIZON TEAM PENSKE CHEVROLET, FINISHED 11TH: “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.”
MIKE CONWAY, NO. 20 FUZZY’S ULTRA PREMIUM VODKA CHEVROLET, FINISHED 13TH:
“Going into the chicane on the first lap, Marco (Andretti) made a move in front of me and I couldn’t stop quick enough. It clipped the front wing and I think it cut the tire too. So I had to pit immediately and that really killed the race for us. I thought I could get away with it but it cut the tire. My (left) thumb was okay during the race after spraining it Saturday. It felt a little numb at times because I think the tape might have be a little too tight. But it was okay. I just tried to fight back and stay on the lead lap as long as I could. It was hot in the car but I felt pretty good. I was able to get some air coming into my visor during the yellows. I had a close call with a piece of carbon that flew up from (Luca) Filippi’s car. It hit the right mirror and almost me. It was close to hitting me in the head. That would have hurt.”
SEBASTIAN SAAVEDRA, NO. 17 KV AFS RACING CHEVROLET, FINISHED 17TH: “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.”
SCOTT DIXON, NO. 9 TARGET CHIP GANASSI RACING CHEVROLET, FINISHED 18TH: “Well that was obviously not the day we wanted to have with the Target car. Race 1 in Houston for us was unkind and today Race 2 was the same way with spec master cylinder issues. It just wasn’t our weekend and we hope we’ll have the same turn around to our season in Pocono next weekend like we did last season.”
HELIO CASTRONEVES, NO. 3 PENNZOIL ULTRA PLATINUM INSURANCE TEAM PENSKE CHEVROLET – SIDELINED IN ACCIDENT ON LAP 49 – FINISHED 21ST:
YOU HAD JUST LOST THE LEAD TO SIMON PAGENAUD ON LAP 49. YOU HAD CONTACT WITH SEBASTIAN BOURDAIS. WHAT HAPPENED?
“I don’t know. When I lost the lead with Pagenaud, I was actually trying to attack him. And actually, I was attacking him and trying to pass him. So, right now I’m just trying to pass and see if I’m going to run out of room so I come back to try to do the apex and I had no idea he was there. Obviously when I’m attacking, I can’t have my eyes in the back. So, it’s absolutely ridiculous when the guy has to put the car over there. But anyway; it’s the rules of traffic. The guy that hits the guy in the back it’s always wrong. You’ve got to take care of it.
“Anyway, the car was awesome. Sorry but I’m frustrated a little bit. I am upset, yes, because we had a great car. It’s still like 30 laps to go. I wasn’t even panicking or anything like that. But it is what it is and I’ll move on and see what happens. But the Shell Pennzoil car was awesome. Chevy has great power and it’s just a shame that unfortunately we have drivers like that that does not use common sense. And that’s what we need to have. It is what it is. It’s always going to have ups and downs.”
YOU HAVE HAD A SORE FINGER SINCE LONG BEACH. IS IT BOTHERING YOU? HOW SIGNIFICANT IS THAT?
“Well, it is. I can see that it’s going to be swollen tomorrow; it’s going to be swollen in the next week, but there is nothing we can do in terms of that because it was so sudden what happened. I don’t even have enough time to take my hand off the steering wheel. But anyway, he finished my race and look what happened.”