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Jan 25, 2013 - 06:46 PM
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Tag Back for Two
Posted by: BGerhart on Jan 25, 2013 - 06:43 PM
Feature Articles
Tag Back for Two





By Brad Gerhart

Canadian veteran Alex Tagliani recently signed a multi-year (two years) contract to remain at the Bryan Herta led Barracuda Racing team.

With a less than stellar engine (Lotus of course) Tagliani, along with the team struggled in the races prior to the Indianapolis 500 in May. In three races under Lotus (he did not compete in the Brazil event), Tagliani did all he could to post a 15th at the season opener of St. Petersburg.

Once Barracuda opted out of their Lotus contract the team found their mark with Honda as he finished the season with eight top-10’s and qualified inside the top six during six of 10 races of the 2012 season. A season best finish of fifth came in his native Canadian land (in Edmonton, Alberta), unfortunately for Tagliani and fellow Canadian James Hinchcliffe, the series announced that the popular airport circuit would not be on the 2013 schedule, leaving Toronto as the only Canadian date on the tour.

 

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Although Tagliani has not won an open-wheel event since Road America (Champ Car) in 2004, he did taste victory as a member of the NASCAR Canadian Tire series on the Edmonton track in 2008, won the pole at Texas in 2012 and became the first Canadian to start first at the history Indy 500 in 2011.

The highly knowledgeable, engineer minded driver recently turned 40, but has yet to show any signs of slowing down on the track. There’s far less questions with Honda during this off-season and the way the team gelled under their new engine manufacturer after May, expect Tagliani and Barracuda to do much better than their 17th place finish in the standings a year ago.

Odds might be against Tagliani for a second career victory, but never count him out, a couple of podium finishes is never out of the question for the highly competitive French Canadian.

He’ll have as good as a shot as any in 2013, or at least a much better one than he did with Lotus at the start of the 2012 campaign.


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