Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing team co-owner Bobby Rahal says that the call from Dennis Reinbold about loaning Graham Rahal to Dreyer and Reinbold Racing with Cusick Motorsports for the 107th running of the Indianapolis 500 this weekend came out of the blue.
It was announced on Tuesday that Graham Rahal who drives the No.15 United Rentals Honda for RLL will sub for the injured Stefan Wilson in the No.24 CareKeepers Dreyer and Reinbold Racing with Cusick Motorsports Chevrolet on Sunday.
It is a unique situation where a Honda driver has moved over to Chevrolet.
Speaking during a media conference on Tuesday at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, Graham Rahal said that he, his dad Bobby, Dennis Reinbold and Don Cusick were sorting the details out late on Monday when it became clear that Stefan would not race.
Graham also mentioned that while he is happy to race the priority is that Stefan Wilson gets better soon.
In a statement released on Tuesday, Bobby Rahal said:
First, I feel bad for Stefan that he is hurt. I’m sure he was very excited after qualifying for the race and had done a great job all month. It’s a real shame that this happened. I wish him the best and hope he has a speedy recovery. I’m sure we will see him again.
“I have to say this came out of the blue. I’ve known Dennis for years personally. I have always liked and respected him as a fellow racer and also a car dealer. When Dennis called, we went to work to make this happen. The most amazing thing is how all these different groups, out of respect for the sport and the Indy 500, agreed to agree and go forward even though it may have been somewhat of a difficult decision. The fact that everyone pulled together to make this happen for Dennis, and also for Graham, makes us very thankful. I am also thankful that Dennis asked Graham to join him and his team and appreciate the commitment and excitement from Mike, Dave, United Rentals and Fifth Third Bank to see this happen. We wish them the best in the race.”