Graham Rahal in the No.15 Fifth Third Bank Honda says he is looking forward to turn the page following his retirement from the Indianapolis 500 for this weekend’s double header in Detroit where he swept the weekend in 2017 and looking ahead to the events he said:

I think it’s great to turn the page now, move forward to a race that I’ve loved so much. I’ve had some success there. I love the challenge that Detroit gives you. We’re excited to get a chance to turn the page from Indy, move on, and hopefully have a great weekend. The depth of the field is incredible right now. It’s very hard for somebody to get an advantage. That (2017) weekend, we were first or second in every single practice, every single qualifying, then obviously swept the race. To do that again, I think it’s a big challenge. It was a big challenge then, but I think if you look top to bottom at the quality of the field now, there’s not really many guys that are going to go miss. What I got very fortunate with in 2017 was we started up front in both of those races. There was nothing abnormal. There was the red flag with two to go in the one race. The races were pretty green. I think it’s harder to do today.
“I do think it’s going to be an exceptionally physical weekend. It looks hot, upper 80s and sunny. Detroit does not have any long straightaways really. I do think it’s going to be a pretty physical weekend. I think we’ll just go at it and try to make sure that you get rested up on Saturday night if you have a full day on Saturday because Sunday is going to be another bruiser.”

Takuma Sato goes into this weekend’s races aiming to finish on the podium having scored a podium here with RLL in 2019 and speaking ahead of the weekend he said:

I’m very excited to be back to Detroit because it’s a fantastic race usually, with lots of history for the INDYCAR SERES, and usually back-to-back after the Indy 500 so it’s quite contrasting because it’s one of the bumpiest tracks in the series as a street course. Last year unfortunately we weren’t able to race there due to the pandemic, but 2019 we had very strong results, I got on the podium for the first race and the second race was also very close to the podium, but we unfortunately had a puncture. The specification of tires, and of course the cars now have aero screens and the conditions will be very different so I can’t say we can repeat easily that performance but usually the team has a very strong performance at Detroit. Looking at this year’s St. Pete race which was also a street course and was quite a competitive race for us. I believe we will be strong. The team has done lots of preparation and I can’t wait to be back at the Detroit double header. It will be very, very exciting.

Following a strong run for the team at the Indy 500, Santino Ferrucci returns to racing with Rahal this weekend and speaking ahead of the races he said:

It’s incredible that Detroit is back on the NTT INDYCAR SERIES calendar. I think it’s a fantastic venue and I love racing on the streets of Belle Isle. It also means that the world is definitely going back to normal and it’s incredible to carry momentum of fans from the Indy 500 onto Detroit. My last couple of races in Detroit have been really good. We just never have been very lucky but always quick. I’m hoping that we can capitalize this weekend in the Hy-Vee, Frito-Lay Honda.
With Detroit being an incredibly difficult track and now with limited practice, it’s hard to set expectations for this weekend but the minimum I would say is two top 10’s assuming we have a smooth three-day event. This race is hard physically and mentally since it’s two full race distances, but in 2020 we did quite a few doubleheaders so I feel really prepared.
“Since we haven’t seen the track in almost two years, the team will be preparing based on their previous street course events and how they feel the direction of the car needs to improve. Working with them and doing debriefs, we already have a good baseline of where we’re starting. The track walk on Thursday will be crucial to see what changes they’ve made as street courses never go together the same way year after year.

Detroit is a happy hunting ground for the team with Graham having won here twice in 2017 while team owner Bobby Rahal won the inaugural race here in 1992.

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