Andretti Autosport’s Colton Herta in the No.26 Gainbridge Honda took his sixth NTT IndyCar Series P1 Award for Sunday’s inaugural Big Machine City Grand Prix of Nashville with a time of 1:13.6835s and speaking following the action he commented saying:

“It was a good lap, but what we did in Q1 [Round 1] is what really helped us – being able to transfer on black tires. That was the biggest thing. Being fast on blacks really made it a lot easier for the rest of the way. Great job by everyone, great job by the team. The Gainbridge car is fantastic, as you can see. What we were able to do on the black-tire laps compared to everybody really shows. We were in a league of our own. It felt amazing. Good car to take into the race tomorrow too; nice and stable.”

Herta will have two of his teammates, Alexander Rossi in the No.27 AutoNation NAPA Auto Parts Honda and James Hinchcliffe in the No.29 Capstone Honda for company in the top ten and speaking about that topic to Paddock Eye following the action he said:

Yeah, it is nice to kind of have the teammates’ backup there. A lot of data to kind of go through, too, that we can kind of relate to each other, see where we need to be better for the race.

Also it’s nice when they’re up there because you can kind of trust their changes and stuff a little bit more. In warmup it’s going to be a big thing. Like Scott said, we have no clue really what the reds are going to do. I have an idea of what the blacks are going to do, but the reds are a little bit trickier. Going to have to wait and see.

Hopefully the whole team can kind of come together and try four different things to see what we can do for the race.

Speaking about the track itself and what it might be like on Sunday, he said:

I’m not sure. I think it will probably be similar to Detroit. The racing, like Scott said, too, is all going to depend on what the red tires end up doing. Kind of at this point I haven’t really run the red tires that much, only in qualifying really. So warmup will give me a good kind of answer on what the racing is going to be like, then you can kind of go from there.

Even in warmup, kind of judging on where you can save some fuel, where you can back the pack up to get better runs off the corners. I’ll have the chance to deal with that because there’s definitely going to be a lot of traffic in warmup tomorrow.

Alexander Rossi in the No.27 AutoNation NAPA Auto Parts Honda starts the race from third place and speaking following the action he commented saying:

“It was an intense session. We had an issue in Practice 2, the guys did a great job fixing the car for me. We qualified fourth and are starting third after Alex [Palou’s six-spot grid] penalty, so pretty happy with that. We knew once Colton [Herta] was able to transfer on [Firestone Primary] blacks that he pretty much had it locked up. Regardless, the 26 side has done an amazing job all weekend, so he deserved that pole. Third is a good spot to start tomorrow and we’ll see what we can do.”

James Hinchcliffe in the No.29 Capstone Honda had a great session as he starts the race from tenth place and speaking following the action he commented saying:

“Solid day for the Capstone Honda guys and Andretti Steinbrenner with a top-10 start. Honestly, a little bit disappointed. We had a better lap going when Josef [Newgarden] had his incident in Q2 [Round 2], so we weren’t able to complete it. Probably the same story for a lot of guys. But obviously you look at Colton [Herta] and Alex [Rossi], the cars had a lot of pace. I think we could have been a little bit further up. Congrats to Colton and the 26 guys. But happy to have a top-10 start with the Capstone car. Hopefully we can move up from there tomorrow.”

Ryan Hunter Reay in the No.28 DHL Honda starts the race from 14th place  and speaking following the action he said:

“Qualifying is under our belts. We just missed advancing into the Fast 12 by a tenth – .11, so it’s unfortunate. It’s super close out there, anytime you lock a wheel just a little bit or bottom out under braking, anything like that, you’re talking about hundredths of a second and you’ve just missed out. All in all, we made big steps today. We’ll be starting 14th tomorrow; we’re looking forward to it. We’ll put our heads together tonight with our teammates and put a good race car on track.”

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