Kanaan Comes Home On The Podium At The Firestone 600
Chip Ganassi Racing’s Tony Kanaan in the No.10 NTT DATA Chevrolet secured his second Texas podium in succession as the Brazilian finished the Firestone 600 in third place.
Kanaan started the race from 10th and had a great battle at the end of the event with race winner Graham Rahal and James Hinchcliffe who finished the race in second place. As a result of his second place, TK moves up to third in the Verizon IndyCar Series points standings heading to Watkins Glen next weekend.
Speaking following the race he commented by saying:
Oh, that was so much fun. I’ve got to thank the fans that came back. I didn’t think there was going to be a lot of people but whoever didn’t come missed a hell of a race. That was some old school Texas right there. It was a good night. We started way in the back, but we made up positions right away. I think with INDYCAR not changing the rules and the earlier race being a day race, we had a ton of downforce that we had to run during tonight’s race, so the cars felt a lot closer as you could see. I had to dig into my hard drive and remember pack racing again. It worked out pretty well. Big props to the guys in front who gave each other room, that’s why we finished the way we did. It’s always a pleasure to race like that. I feel bad for the people that didn’t come back tonight from the first race to watch because it really was a hell of a show.” (On how exciting the end was) “When you have good cars going with each other, it’s quicker. I gave them hell!” (On where he wanted to be for the last lap) “On the inside. But if Graham (Rahal) wasn’t pushing Hinch (James Hinchcliffe), I was going to have it. So, I was hoping for Graham to get greedy and go three wide. That was going to slow everybody down, but that didn’t happen. He was smart enough.
Charlie Kimball in the No.83 Tresiba® Chevrolet restarted the race from 15th place and came through the field to finish the race well inside the top ten in sixth place just ahead of Carlos Munoz.
Speaking following the race, Kimball commented by saying:
It was kind of a crazy night out there. I’m really proud of the No. 83 Novo Nordisk guys here at Texas. I don’t think we were particularly strong here in June when the race started, but we learned some things from our teammates. The guys were solid all night in pit lane, the strategy calls were right on and we were knocking on the door of the top five which was good. It got crazy there at the end and we just couldn’t get our lap back which was unfortunate. It was a good day in the points for us which I’m happy about.
Max Chilton in the No.8 Gallagher Chevrolet restarted the race from 19th and finished the race in 15th place and speaking following the race he commented by saying:
It was just an absolutely crazy race. It was two, three and sometimes four wide out there. I was struggling with the balance of the Gallagher car all night. We took three and a half turns of front wing out and it still didn’t feel right. I was struggling to get the car to feel right especially when we ran in a pack – it was just so neutral. There were times in clear air when we were quick, but on a whole it was a bit of a poor day. On the other side of things, we finished and ran all the laps and got good experience under our belts.
Reigning series champion Scott Dixon in the No.9 Target Chevrolet was hit by Ed Carpenter forcing the New Zealander to retire from the race and speaking following the event, Dixon commented by saying:
I like Ed (Carpenter) and he’s a good friend, but I don’t know what the hell he was doing out there. Three laps before that he nearly crashed me doing the same thing going into Turn 3. And then going into Turn 1, he just turned left into me. I don’t know if his radio wasn’t working or he didn’t have a spotter, but how you don’t get a penalty for that I have no idea.