Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing’s Graham Rahal in the No.15 Fleet Coast Care Honda heads to Texas Motor Speedway this weekend for the doubleheader Genesys 300 and the XPEL 375 aiming to repeat his famous win here from 2016 which was the closest finish in Texas Motor Speedway history where Rahal beat James Hinchcliffe and Tony Kanaan by .8s and speaking ahead of the races this weekend, Rahal said:

“It was a great feeling to win in Texas. To be able to fire the guns off after the race was pretty cool. The finish was a little closer than what we wanted. I can’t remember what the margin of victory was then but it was a couple inches maximum. Hopefully this time around we can get it done with a little more cushion. I’m looking forward to going back to Texas, particularly after last weekend (in St. Pete). I thought we were looking for a top-three finish, feeling pretty strong really in the race and to not get any points or not get the result we hoped for was frustrating. Last year in Texas we actually qualified quite well, I think top seven, but the car wouldn’t start on the grid so we immediately started the race 2-3 laps down and you know from there just kind of held serve and did our thing, we couldn’t really pass anybody, we couldn’t really compete with anybody. We kind of just ran around all day so it wasn’t that much fun. But obviously it’s a double header this weekend. It’s going to be a big, big weekend for us points wise with races Saturday night and Sunday afternoon. The weather looks great. – upper 70’s which is nice compared to the 110 we normally get in TexasSo we are looking to see what we can do in the Fleet Cost & Care machine.”

Takuma Sato in the No.30 Panasonic Honda is looking forward to this weekend’s events having taken pole here last season and is hoping to bring that momentum forward to this year and speaking ahead of the race the defending Indianapolis 500 winner said:

 It’s going to be an exciting one because Texas is always an exciting race, it’s as simple as that. We had a good test and tried to help INDYCAR with the new aero kit as well as do the Firestone test and I think it was a very productive test for all of us. So it’s going to be quite a challenge, particularly the second lane in Texas now is very difficult to run. Firestone predicted about 20% less grip, so INDYCAR allowed us to have more downforce in order to go a little bit closer together to make for more overtaking. Which I believe it will succeed and we will see for the race, but all in all I think we had a very good baseline, and hopefully it’s the case because we only have one session and its straight to qualifying so hopefully we have a strong package.”

 

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