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Mar 24, 2013 - 05:55 AM
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2013 St. Pete: Andretti Autosport IndyCar Qualifying Recap
Posted by: newsla on Mar 24, 2013 - 05:52 AM
IndyCar Weekend Team Reports
2013 St. Pete: Andretti Autosport IndyCar Qualifying Recap


James Hinchcliffe, No. 27 GoDaddy.com Chevrolet

Hinchcliffe qualified the GoDaddy.com Chevy in the fourth position for tomorrow's 110-lap race around the streets of St. Petersburg. He has one previous start in St. Pete (2012) where he also started from the fourth position.

 

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"It's good to be back and good to get the first qualifying of the season out of the way. To have the Go Daddy car in the first two rows... we're pretty happy with that. The big question mark was these red tires (Firestone alternate red tires), they don't let us test with them so everybody was trying them out for the first time. What we figured out pretty quick was how peaky they are, it's kind of one lap - maybe two if you're lucky. So we weren't sure what to do with the cars. It's all about finding that gap and putting all the sectors together. Definitely a tough job for the drivers but obviouslty the Go Daddy car was good, the guys did a great job between all the sessions and I'm happy to be in the first two rows."

Marco Andretti, No. 25 RC Cola Chevrolet

Andretti will start seventh tomorrow on the street of St. Pete. This will be Andretti's eighth IZOD IndyCar Series start on the 14-turn temporary street circuit, he also started seventh here in 2012.

" We had a good team effort today for the RC Cola car. I would have liked to see something in the Firestone Fast Six, but it takes so much to get everything right. The tires are pretty finicky, so that can make things pretty interesting for days like this. We will make some adjustments tonight, and come back tomorrow ready to go."

Ryan Hunter-Reay, No. 1 DHL Chevrolet Huter-Reay will start form the eighth grid position tomorrow. In the 2012 running of the Grand Prix of St. Pete the reigning series champion started and finished from the third position.

"This morning we got aggressive with the setup and we tried some things that didn't really work, so we went back on it for qualifying and didn't quite hit the sweet spot. We were only a couple tenths off. Looks like we were less than a tenth off from being in the Firestone Fast Six. As usual it's tight - if you miss it by a hair, you're going to be on the outside looking in. Eighth is in the top 10 - we can start from there and still race for the win. Optimistic about that, just disappointed that we didn't get the DHL Chevy into the top six."

E.J. Viso, No. 5 Team Venezuela PDVSA CITGO Chevrolet

Viso's moring practice was cut short after a mechanical failure led to contact in Turn 10 early in the session. The car was badly damaged but a valiant effort by the Team Venezuela crew got the No. 5 Chevy ready just in tim e to participate in today's qualifying session - allowing Viso to make up at least a few positions. He will start tomorrow's race from 22nd.

"Well it was a tough day today especially with the morning we had. Something failed in the practice session this morning, and we could only get a couple laps - it was tough to recover. Qualifying didn't go the way we wanted either and we're missing a lot of downforce in the car which made the car understeer like crazy. I'm happy for my teammates, though, they did a good job; James is starting top s ix. I really think tomorrow will be a good day. There are plenty of variables that can affect us, including the weather, but I totally trust the strategies that Andretti is going to put together for tomorrow's race."

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