2011 IndyCar Rd.4--Sao Paulo Indy 300

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2011 IndyCar Rd.4--Sao Paulo Indy 300

Postby mlittle » Tue Apr 26, 2011 1:43 pm

After three rounds in three very different locales(St. Pete, Barber & Long Beach) the stars of the IndyCar Series head south of the equator to the streets of Sao Paulo, Brazil for the fourth round of the 2011 season.........the Sao Paulo Indy 300.


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Track Map, Sao Paulo Indy 300

Like most street circuits, there's little, if any, room for error.......go off-line for a moment and you're liable to make friends with the concrete canyons.....if you know what I mean. :shock: :shock: :shock: :shock:
Last edited by mlittle on Fri May 06, 2011 4:26 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby mlittle » Tue Apr 26, 2011 1:53 pm

Weekend Schedule, Sao Paulo Indy 300

--Practice Session #1: 8:30-9:45am, 30 April 2011
--Practice Session #2: 12-1pm, 30 April 2011
--Knockout Qualifying: 2-3:20pm, 30 April 2011
--Warm-Up: 8:30-9am, 1 May 2011
--Sao Paulo Indy 300: 2pm, Versus


Past IndyCar Winners in Brazil......
1996: Andre Ribeiro
1997: Paul Tracy
1998: Greg Moore
1999: Juan Pablo Montoya
2000: Adrian Fernandez
2010: Will Power
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Postby mlittle » Tue Apr 26, 2011 2:06 pm

Sao Paulo Indy 300 Entry List
Oriol Servia, #2 Telmundo-NHR
Helio Castroneves, #3 Itaipava-Team Penske
(R)J.R. Hildebrand, #4 National Guard
Takuma Sato, #5 Lotus-KV Racing
Ryan Briscoe, #6 Penske Logistics
Danica Patrick, #7 GoDaddy.com
Scott Dixon, #9 Target
Dario Franchitti, #10 Kellogg's
Will Power, #12 Verizon Wireless
Vitor Meira, #14 ABC Supply Co.
Raphael Matos, #17 Automatic Fire Sprinklers
(R)James Jakes, #18 Acorn Stairlifts
Sebastien Bourdais, #19 Boy Scouts of America
Justin Wilson, #22 HP-DRR
(R)Ana Beatriz, #24 Ipiringa-DRR
Marco Andretti, #26 Venom Energy
Mike Conway, #27 Window World Cares
Ryan Hunter-Reay, #28 DHL-Sun Drop
(R)Sebastien Saavedra, #34 Conquest Racing
Graham Rahal, #38 Service Central
E.J. Viso, #59 PDVSA-KV Racing
Alex Tagliani, #77 Bowers & Wilkins
Simona de Silvestro, #78 Nuclear Clean Air Energy
Tony Kanaan, #82 Itaipava-KV Racing
(R)Charlie Kimball, #83 Novolog & Levemir FlexPen
(R)James Hinchcliffe, #06 Sprotts-NHR
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Meira's Mindset: Conquer Sao Paulo

Postby mlittle » Tue Apr 26, 2011 2:20 pm

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---Written by IndyCar writer Dave Lewandowski
Vitor Meira’s ebullience was clear during a phone conversation (partly because of the birth of his daughter, Juliana, on Easter Sunday morning) to discuss the Itaipava São Paulo Indy 300 presented by Nestle. The third-year A.J. Foyt Racing driver secured a podium finish in the 2010 IZOD IndyCar Series season opener and is bolstered by two top-10 finishes in three events heading into the May 1 race on the streets of Sao Paulo, Brazil.

“It was a very important race because not only was it the first race of the season but it was the first race of IndyCars in Brazil and my first race after the crash at Indianapolis,” said Meira, who gained 13 positions to finish third in the No. 14 ABC Supply car. “There were a bunch of things to be put in place in that race, and to come out with a very positive result was almost a dream. I couldn’t choose a better place or better time to have things going my way. It was a wonderful weekend and one I’ll never forget.”

And it’s one he’d like to repeat. He was the top-finishing Brazilian (he’s from Brasilia), and five natives of Brazil are among the 26 drivers entered this weekend. Meira has finished eighth, ninth and 12th, making gains in each race. He’s started 13th twice, missing out on advancing to Segment 2 of qualifications by 0.0091 of a second at St. Petersburg and 0.1937 of a second at Long Beach (both street courses).

“Our priority was to improve on road and street courses and we have done that,” said Meira, who put in three days of testing at Barber Motorsports Park before the season. “We are a solid top-10 car most of the places we go; on street courses we are a little better still than road courses. I’m excited with the way the season has started in a championship that is more competitive than last year. To be 10th in the championship after three solid races is definitely improvement. Now we have to improve more and get points on the oval races.”

Since returning to Brasilia following the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach, Meira has felt the energy of the country surrounding the second IZOD IndyCar Series race.

“The people saw what kind of show we put on last year and they’re really excited,” he reported. “The tickets are almost sold out. It’s growing even more. It’s interesting for the people of Sao Paulo to know that cars are racing on the same streets they travel every day. Every other form of racing (in Brazil) is on a racetrack, and to be on the streets is a plus for INDYCAR.”

Details about Juliana Schettini Meira: 6 pounds, 6 ounces. 19.3 inches long. Mother and daughter are doing well.
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Postby mlittle » Sun May 01, 2011 7:54 am

Sao Paulo Practice Session #1 Top-5
1} Ryan Briscoe, Team Penske.....................1:25.107 sec
2} Will Power, Team Penske.........................1:25.142 sec
3} Ryan Hunter-Reay, Andretti Autosport.....1:25.204 sec
4} Helio Castroneves, Team Penske.............1:25.231 sec
5} Justin Wilson, Dreyer-Reinbold.................1:25.351 sec

Sao Paulo Practice Session #2 Top-5
1} Will Power, Team Penske..........................1:24.151 sec
2} Simona de Silvestro, HVM Racing..............1:24.231 sec
3} Scott Dixon, Target/Ganassi Racing..........1:24.302 sec
4} Ryan Hunter-Reay, Andretti Autosport......1:24.304 sec
5} Dario Franchitti, Target/Ganassi Racing.....1:24.394 sec
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Power Wins Rain-Delayed Sao Paulo Race.......

Postby mlittle » Fri May 06, 2011 4:16 am

.....from MO, 2 May 2011


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---Team Penske's Will Power led early and led late to take his second win of the season at today's rain-shortened Indy Sao Paulo 300. The win also marked Power's second consecutive win on the 2.6-mile, 11-turn circuit, and the 11th Indy car victory of his career.

With Sunday's race postponed due to heavy rain, Power restarted the race Monday morning on Lap 15 from the lead, but KV Racing-Lotus driver Takuma Sato, exploiting the full-wet setup the team changed to overnight, passed power on Lap 26 and began to pull away through the middle portion of the 55-lap event.

Sato's dreams of a maiden IndyCar Series win would stumble when his team left him out during a caution on Lap 35 while most of the field made their final stop for fuel. It sealed Sato's fate as the yellow flag the team hoped to use to stretch his fuel to the finish never materialized.

Pitting for fuel with less than five minutes to go in the timed race ended Sato's impressive run, as Power took the lead and marched home to a win by 4.672 seconds over Ganassi Racing's Graham Rahal. "That was an awesome race," said Power. "Really happy to get the Verizon car in victory lane again. Four poles and two wins... I slowly started picking people off. It was a matter of keeping calm and pulling a gap to stay safe. It was a great day for us."

After oversteering early in the race and hitting the barriers with his left rear wheel, Power said he was happy to make it to the finish without any mechanical issues. "It wasn't that straightforward a win. We had to go back in the pack a little bit there in the middle pit stop. I bent my car earlier in the race, so I had a steering wheel [that wasn't pointed straight] most of the race. Didn't seem to affect it too badly. I was just worried. I was hoping it wasn't going to break or something. But very good day for Verizon. [We] took the lead back in the championship. Not that it really matters this early in the season, but you just have to keep getting points every race."

Power's teammate Ryan Briscoe finished third and Dario Franchitti, who surrendered the points lead to Power, finished fourth. Oriol Servia's amazing start to the season continued as the Spaniard finished fifth.

KV Racing-Lotus looked like the team's breakthrough victory was on the cards on Sao Paulo, with Sato and E.J. Viso visibly faster than most cars in the field. While most teams retained their setup from Sunday, KV rolled the dice and tailored its cars to perform in the rain, which worked to their advantage for most of Monday's event.

Sato's lead stretched to as much as six seconds, while Viso stormed through the pack from 11th to second at one point.

Sato's late stop, combined with running long into turn 1 on Lap 51 and giving up four spots as he negotiated his way back onto the track, would see him finish 23 seconds behind Power in eighth.

KV Racing-Lotus suffered another blow when Viso, who had moved over to defend his line on more than one occasion, was black flagged while running second. After running at the sharp end of the field all day, Viso's 13th-place finish was a hard pill to swallow.

Power's charge from eighth after the Lap 35 stop was nothing short of impressive, as the Aussie picked off car after car to move up to second prior to Sato's stop. With Sato behind him, Power counted down the final laps to cruise home without any pressure from behind.

Starting fourth, Rahal had a race filled with ups and downs, but luckily for the young Ohioan, his day ended on an upswing with a competitive run to second. A spin on Lap 26 dropped Rahal to the back of the lead lap, but a crafty bit of strategy from his Service Central team found the No. 38 car topping up at the end of the caution period that came out due to a crash by Rafa Matos. Rahal would pit again for a quick top-up on the Lap 35 caution, beating the leaders out of the pits.

Power would pass Franchitti and then Rahal when the race went back to green, but as the best Ganassi driver on the day, the 22-year-old gained the momentum he needed as the series heads to Indianapolis. Rahal also moved to ninth in the championship standings.

After a frustrating start to the season, Rahal was happy to get his season back on track. "I certainly hope it's not a surprise," he said. "All weekend the Service Central Chip Ganassi Racing car has been really good. In the dry, in the qualifying, we were very competitive, very happy to start fifth. We ran pretty well yesterday. Obviously we only ran a few laps of green, but we stayed out of trouble. Of course, today, the guys did a great job. We had a spin early on in the race, but we recovered from that very well. I think at the end of the day we needed a good result for our team going into Indianapolis, which is coming up in only a couple of weeks. It feels really good to be here right now."

Ryan Briscoe's run to third was similar to Rahal's in many ways, as the Team Penske driver gained and lost positions throughout the race, but when the jockeying was finished, he had his second podium in two weeks and moved to fifth in the standings. It was a rather quiet day for Briscoe, but compared to the drama-filled opening to his season, he'll need more performances like he turned in at Brazil to remain in the hunt for his first title.

"It was good strategy," he said. "We kept our nose clean. There was certainly a lot of havoc going on around me during a lot of the race. At the end, I got passed Dario (Franchitti) going into the hairpin. I was trying to catch (Graham) Rahal, but we were doing about the same lap time. We didn't change wets on the last stop but we had slightly fresher tires. I was sort of hanging on a bit. It's a great day for Team Penske."

Dario Franchitti is known for his prowess in the wet, but the reigning IZOD IndyCar Series champion was never a threat on the streets of Sao Paulo. The Scot's race--and championship aspirations--appeared to suffer a major blow when he locked up his brakes and slid sideways into the Turn 1 tire barriers on Lap 33.

To the surprise of many, the two-time Indy 500 winner simply engaged reverse, backed up, and drove around the tires to resume his race. He'd pit immediately to replace a damaged nose/wing assembly, and dropped to 15th.

His drive to fourth showed the kind of determination he's shown over the years, and while he lost the points lead to Power in Brazil, the calm manner by which he handled the Turn 1 incident prevented the No. 10 car from falling farther down the championship standings.

"After me making a mistake on the restart, I'm very proud of my Target guys for the front wing change and getting us back out there," he said. "We came out of this with a fourth-place result so I'll take it."

Oriol Servia did a masterful job of lingering on Monday. The Newman/Haas Racing driver didn't have the car to win, but he did fight every step of the way and was rewarded with fifth--15.8 seconds behind Power--while avoiding the mistakes that caught so many drivers out in Sao Paulo.

“We decided to go with the least amount of downforce we had the whole weekend on the Telemundo car because we were hoping the race was going to be dry," he said. "We were wrong there but the car was good enough that we were able to stay out of trouble, get by a couple of cars, never get passed, move forward with no mistakes, had good pits stops and finish fifth."

Servia's consistency in the first four rounds has moved the diminutive driver to third in the championship, 58 points behind Power.

Long Beach winner Mike Conway had the longest haul--coming from 20th on Lap 15--to finish sixth in just 40 laps of racing on Monday. The Briton held third on Sunday, but electrical issues dropped him to 20th just as the race was stopped for the final time.

"It was a good result overall for the Window World Cares car," he said. "We ended up in sixth place and got a few points. It was difficult though; we had to try and stay out of trouble, there was so much going on in every corner and it was so slippery out there. But good job to the team and some good calls were made. We started 20th so I'm pretty happy with that."

Justin Wilson recovered from a spin on Lap 30 to finish seventh, while James Hinchcliffe finished ninth--the top rookie--to score his second consecutive top 10 result.[/img]
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Postby mlittle » Fri May 06, 2011 4:26 am

Top-10 from a monsoon-like Sao Paulo...........
1} #12 Will Power, 55 laps
2} #38 Graham Rahal, -4.673 sec
3} #6 Ryan Briscoe, -7.904 sec
4} #10 Dario Franchitti, -10.147 sec
5} #2 Oriol Servia, -15.819 sec
6} #27 Mike Conway, -16.678 sec
7} #22 Justin Wilson, -20.014 sec
8} #5 Takuma Sato, -23.069 sec
9}(R)#06 James Hinchcliffe, -24.629 sec
10}(R)#4 J.R. Hildebrand, -31.318 sec
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