Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Indy 500 drivers come to Toronto 2016

The easy part is over - qualifying for the "Greatest Spectacle in Racing", now the Verizon IndyCar drivers have come to town to meet the media and Jeff Atkinson, President of Honda Indy Toronto. AJ Foyt Enterprises' drivers Alex Tagliani and Takuma Sato flew in from Indianapolis, Indiana to discuss the sport at Hunters Landing located at 82 Fort York Blvd. They return for the final week of preparations before taking part in the Indy 500 race on Sunday, May 29. Photo at top: l-r, Alex Tagliani, Takuma Sato and Jeff Atkinson
Alex Tagliani  was inducted into the 2015 Canadian Motorsport Hall of Fame and drives in the Verizon IndyCar and the NASCAR Pinty's Series. AJ Foyt brought the Canadian driver on board for two races in May 2016, including the coveted Indianapolis Motor Speedway Indy 500.

“I feel very privileged and honored to be driving the Alfe Heat Treating Honda,” said Tagliani, who won the pole for the 2011 Indy 500. "Alfe is a great company and I met a lot of good people last year with their headquarters being so close to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. I’m very excited to be driving for the AJ Foyt Racing organization again. To be driving for them at the Speedway during the month of May is very special. The 100th Running of the Indy 500 will make it even more unique."
His 2016 Indy 500 qualifications did not go well, as he crashed, luckily he was not injured, and ended up qualifying in last place - the 33rd position. He has previously started in last place as well as taking the number 1 pole position. He could also qualify to race in both the IndyCar and NASCAR races that will take place at Honda Indy Toronto 2016!
Time for one on one interviews

Takuma Sato is from Tokyo, Japan and drives full time for the AJ Foyt team. He is the first Japanese winner of an IndyCar race and has held the pole position 5 times in the series.

"Sato considers himself a risk-taker when it comes to his driving style. “I’m an attacker. A risk-taker too. So basically, my driving style is ‘Never give up.’ I’m strongly passionate about the racing but I love the scientific approach of analyzing the driving and the car data too. I believe I’m strong at late braking, and also in high-speed cornering and wet conditions!"

The complete starting lineup of the 2016 Indy 500 spread out to cities in North America to put out word about the upcoming race. Canadian James Hinchcliffe who will start off in the Pole Position for Sunday's race was in New York along with Will Power, Marco Andretti, Ryan Hunter-Reay and Townsend Bell.

For the first time in Hoosier history the Indy 500 has been sold out and the usual Indianapolis television broadcast delay won't be required. "There's no event in the world like the Indy 500," said Hulman & Company CEO Mark Miles. "This sellout is a testament to the enduring legacy of 'The Greatest Spectacle in Racing,' the thrilling racing of the Verizon IndyCar Series and the bright future for both."

The Honda Indy Toronto comes to Toronto July 15-17, 2016 where the Verizon IndyCar race will be Sunday's feature race while the NASCAR Pinty's Series race will headline Saturday. Here are the current IndyCar Series championship standings.

1Simon Pagenaud 24222Team PenskeChevrolet
2Scott Dixon1669Chip Ganassi RacingChevrolet
3Juan Pablo Montoya1602Team PenskeChevrolet
4Helio Castroneves1593Team PenskeChevrolet
5Graham Rahal13315Rahal Letterman Lanigan RacingHonda
6Tony Kanaan11110Chip Ganassi RacingChevrolet
7Charlie Kimball11142Chip Ganassi RacingChevrolet
8James Hinchcliffe1105Schmidt Peterson MotorsportsHonda
9Ryan Hunter-Reay10928Andretti AutosportHonda
10Will Power10512Team PenskeChevrolet

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