Phoenix IndyCar: Top 10 quotes after race

Simon Pagenaud picked one of the IndyCar Series tracks richest in open-wheel history to earn his first oval victory

Phoenix IndyCar: Top 10 quotes after race
Simon Pagenaud, Team Penske Chevrolet
Simon Pagenaud, Team Penske Chevrolet, Josef Newgarden, Team Penske Chevrolet
Will Power, Team Penske Chevrolet, Simon Pagenaud, Team Penske Chevrolet
JR Hildebrand, Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet
Helio Castroneves, Team Penske Chevrolet
Scott Dixon, Chip Ganassi Racing Honda
Tony Kanaan, Chip Ganassi Racing Honda
Ed Carpenter, Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet
Charlie Kimball, Chip Ganassi Racing Honda
Josef Newgarden, Team Penske Chevrolet
Carlos Munoz, A.J. Foyt Enterprises Chevrolet
Cla #DriverLapsTimeGapIntervalMphPitsRetirementPoints
1   1 france Simon Pagenaud 250 1:46'24.9473     144.058 3   53
"I can't explain how excited I am. Ovals are not my specialty. I grew up in Europe racing go-karts. I learned about ovals when I was 26 years old, so I had to learn the skill and the technique that I didn't know. Man, this is incredible. What a win. The car was phenomenal and thanks to the Menards Chevrolet crew. On the pit stops these guys never make any mistakes - I can completely rely on them and the car was just incredible from the beginning to the end. The car was so strong at the beginning of the race; we were able to save fuel in traffic. And it paid off with that lucky yellow but we've had our fair share of bad luck too this year so it doesn't hurt sometimes to have a little break." 
2   12 australia Will Power 250 1:46'34.0501 9.1028 9.1028 143.852 3   41
"It was good night considering where we've finished the last few races. I'm happy to finish second and get some points. Unfortunately, there wasn't much of a race to be had after that final yellow because there were so many (lapped) cars in between. I think the Verizon Chevrolet was the strongest car. I would have liked to have got the win, but I'll take the points. This was just what we needed for the championship points. We've been good everywhere."
3   21 united_states J.R. Hildebrand 250 1:46'34.2890 9.3417 0.2389 143.847 3   35
"The car was just awesome all day. It was a little tricky on those first starts and restarts. I couldn't quite get the timing right and the other guys were running a little less downforce than we were. I was having a hard time fighting everyone off when we were jammed together that close. Towards the end of the race, the car was just awesome. I really felt like I had something for Will (Power) there. If we were in a little more traffic for a little longer, I think we could have gotten him. That's where we were at our best at this race, just running in a whole pack of cars. A huge thanks to the Fuzzy's Vodka guys and I'm psyched to be able to come back with a good weekend."
4   3 brazil Helio Castroneves 250 1:46'41.5337 16.5864 7.2447 143.684 3   34
"A lot of battles out there, with teammates even. I'm proud of my REV Group Chevy team. They stayed with it all night. That's what happens when you have three other amazing drivers. Someday it's going to be somebody's day. It was amazing to see. It was a big break for Simon (Pagenaud) on the yellow, but he also was very good. At the end of the day it was a tough battle with some of the guys laps down, which wasn't really necessary to be honest, but that's racing. We have another top five in a race, collecting points. We're going to get our break sooner or later."            
5   9 new_zealand Scott Dixon 249 1:46'43.2077 1 lap 1 lap 143.072 3   30
"Obviously, it was a tough night for the No. 9 NTT Data car, and all the Honda entries I think. Chevy had a leg up on us here and they showed that tonight. We tried to keep our nose clean but just didn't have anything for them tonight. Hopefully we can get some momentum back at the Grand Prix of Indy next month."            
6   10 brazil Tony Kanaan 249 1:46'44.4889 1 lap 1.2812 143.044 3   28
"We knew coming into this weekend that it was going to be a difficult one for us. Eric (Cowdin) gave me a stellar car, but we just couldn't get it done. We have good cars heading into next month, so we'll just refocus on the month of May and hopefully get the results we've been waiting for."            
7   20 united_states Ed Carpenter 248 1:46'39.0668 2 laps 1 lap 142.590 5   26
"Yesterday (qualifying) was kind of a nightmare, so to be able to come back from that with a seventh-place finish was pretty good. And having our other car in the top three and rolling both on the truck, that's a pretty good day. JR (Hildebrand) was super motivated to get back in the car and though he was bummed not to be able to make Barber, it's great for him to get his first podium result here with the team. The whole team did a good job the entire weekend. Now we're going to head to St. Louis for our next test, then it's on to Indianapolis."           
8   83 united_states Charlie Kimball 248 1:46'40.8966 2 laps 1.8298 142.549 3   24
"Three Chip Ganassi Racing cars in the top 10 is a solid day. We knew coming in after the open test in February that we'd have some challenges for the race weekend. But overall the Honda engine ran great, and we were able to get good mileage when we needed to. It was an interesting race with the way it developed with the long yellow at the start and then the yellow in the middle. I lost a spot or two at that second restart; the tires weren't quite there. Overall I'm really proud of the way the Novo Nordisk Chip Ganassi Racing crew rallied this week. We had a few challenges coming into the weekend and we knew dealing with the weather conditions would be tough, especially with just the one practice session. We had great stops by the team in pit lane and really nice calls from the timing stand. I'm happy with the eighth-place result tonight. We'll take those points and move on to the month of May in Indy."            
9   2 united_states Josef Newgarden 248 1:46'42.0206 2 laps 1.1240 142.524 6   23
"Tonight's a tough blow. It's tough when you have a podium car, potentially a winner car if everything goes right, and you finish ninth. We can't be too displeased over ninth, but I don't think we're super happy. I think the Hum by Verizon Chevrolet team is going to truck forward. We think we have fast cars, we've had fast cars all year, so hopefully that bodes well for the month of May and we can try to get some more victories."            
10   14 colombia Carlos Munoz 247 1:46'33.8364 3 laps 1 lap 142.131 4   20
"It was good to get a top-10 finish. We just kept our nose clean the whole night. It was a really physical race and got more physical as the track gripped up. At the end, I was just trying to hold my line and get to the finish. We still need to improve speed-wise but we are getting better and better with this ABC car."            


Phoenix IndyCar: Pagenaud grabs his first oval win

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