IndyCar Series: ABC Supply/A.J. Foyt Indy 225
Topics: ABC Supply/A.J. Foyt Indy 225
June 1, 2008
THE MODERATOR: Got pretty wild there at the end. Tell us about it.
SCOTT DIXON: Yeah, it was a pretty good day for Team Target. We were dominant early on, and the car was really good early on, and the stint where I think we struggled was toward the end and it didn't seem to be a problem, because a lot of the other guys were falling off, as well.
Briscoe, you have to give him credit. He drove the wheels off that thing and he took advantage of the high lines where I tried a few times and nearly ended up on the fence.
I don't know, it was the most fun I've had in a long time to be honest, the most fun I've had in a long time. It was a hell of a race towards the end. I'm just glad that it didn't come down to the traffic being the deciding factor, and it almost was there with Briscoe getting taken out with those guys crashing.
So it was a tough race, a little disappointed that we didn't come up with the win, but still fantastic points for the championship, and we're not really racing for the championship at the moment.
Q. Did you think you could get him if we had finished under green?
SCOTT DIXON: You know, to me, it was going to depend on how the traffic fell at that point. You know, you were going to -- I could run on the bottom line, and some guys were running on the bottom and some were running high, and Briscoe could run on the high line and we almost got him a couple of times just like that.
It was tough in that way, you know, and that's what I mean, if there was three or four more laps to go, it could have gone our way, could have gone his way; but just happy it didn't get decided with a crash.
Q. You said this is the most fun in a long time here; what made it that?
SCOTT DIXON: Milwaukee, and a lot of these small places, there's more driver input. You can manipulate the car, you can try to run up high, you can try to setup the car to run on the bottom. There are so many things that you can decide on throughout the race, and that's what you ask for through the pit stops.
You know, for me, it was passing a lot of cars. It was almost crashing and saving us, and racing, that's the hardest race I've in a long time for a finish. And the way that we were jostling and going through the lap traffic, it was just a lot of fun.
Q. The week that Briscoe had, he's been getting beat up as trouble seems to find him, him getting his first win here, how do you feel about that?
SCOTT DIXON: Yeah, I'm real happy for the guy. I think Ryan's definitely -- he's a fellow teammate and he's definitely got a lot of talent. You know, it's just been a strange start for him, not so much -- it's just been bad luck. And then other opportunities, I think it's just because it snowballed and he's been getting beaten up a lot by probably the media more than anything, and that might play on the guy.
So, you know, if this gives him a bit of inspiration and confidence, he's going to be a tough one for the championship. To me, I think it's fantastic. It's great to see the guy win, he's a good friend and he's very deserving
Q. Did you have to make a lot of adjustments on the car throughout the race?
SCOTT DIXON: We did make a few. I could tell early on that we needed a lot more front end for some reason. The car had a lot of understeer, and that wasn't the case on the prior two days, whether it was just the wind direction or something -- or the prior day to yesterday, especially in turn one. And three and four wasn't a problem; that wind switched, but it's just a lot of understeer for us, and we just kept winding the front wing, and we probably put two or three turns on the car throughout the stops, but that's the only changes we made that I'm aware of.
Q. Compared to the fun you had last week at Indianapolis, compared to the fun you had this week, you said it was a fun time here at Milwaukee.
SCOTT DIXON: It was racing fun. For us, you know, for the driver, what I explained more, demands for from your input than, say, your straight-out speed at some of the bigger circuits and that's something you rely on the car a little bit more.
Sure, it's more difficult and Indy is totally different, it's all about momentum. This place is all about muscling the car in there and making guys just try to get through that traffic. I'm talking from a driver's point of view and from an actual racing point of view; for me, that race today, because of the circuit combination and because of there were so many cars out there today and because of how our car was today, it was a lot of fun.
Q. You mentioned that Ryan ran good high but the move you did make on the front stretch where you got next to him outside, what was the thinking behind that?
SCOTT DIXON: He blocked the inside so I had nowhere to go. And when you're on the inside you can just keep driving the thing in there until the guy on the outside gives up. I tried to go to the bottom and he came out and I did it to Helio earlier, so I wasn't going to complain about it.
Q. By my regards, lap 110, you said you had trouble running up high, but you did have an incident up in turn four. Talk about that.
SCOTT DIXON: Yeah, that was going for my most favorite person to past at that point was Danica. I don't know, I couldn't save my life to pass her all day. It seemed to be every time I got to her, I just stopped. And I tried to go to the outside, tried to -- got in the marbles, I think the rear spun and got loose and it took a while to get the rubber off the tires. And I don't think it ever came off because the car was at least a half second slower at that point. So there was definitely lots of moments today, I had a few on turn one, or on Turn 2 actually once you got across that patch.
I think at the end when you try to dive in there, you try to go in there as quick as possible down the gears and you have a lock on the car and when you're going over bumps and getting close to the guy in front of you, you use a lot of downforce, and that's just what happens.
Q. One restart where you checked out, just talk about the conditions there.
SCOTT DIXON: I think Helio had a few problems on that restart because then later on, he was pushing us real hard and for some reason, I didn't think the car was that great. It just seemed like the others probably weren't. I still had understeer on the car. You know, we started to back up in the end to try and save fuel because when you're going so much faster, you burn probably a quarter more fuel, so that was the problem there.
But you know, it was maybe the time we did the best laps, but I think one of the restarts later we did some more laps, as well. I think just other people had worked on their cars and got them better at that stage to maybe not look like we were so quick out front.
Q. How did the track hold up; did it get slippery at the end?
SCOTT DIXON: It was pretty decent all day. I think it got better at different stages, and through the mid part for me, it felt best. I think later on, the high lines seemed to me it had a little bit more rubber, and I think that's where we started to struggle; a lot of people were running higher than we were and we didn't have much grip on the tires.
The track was consistent. There's marbles, but that's the case when you have almost 30 cars out there.
Q. Did you have anything for Ryan at the end had there not been a caution?
SCOTT DIXON: You know, the cars were both quick. I think it was going to many come down how you call the traffic and check heck what the traffic was going to do.
Yeah, if we were in front of him at that point, you know, I think we could have maybe won the race but three laps more, who knows what would have happened with the traffic. My car was good on the bottom and he was good on the top; and if he caught someone on the top, we would have got him. It's all speculation to talk.
Q. A couple years ago here, your weekend was not good here at the Milwaukee Mile.
SCOTT DIXON: Thanks.
Q. Two race cars. What's been the change in those couple of years where you went from that unfortunately weekend to a really good weekend here at the Mile?
SCOTT DIXON: Well, it's a lot of things: Chassis, engine, teammate. I think it's probably easier to talk about what's not the same. The team definitely works better together now and the engineers work better together and we have better setups now and we have come a long way from when we started this package and Dan and I finished 9th, 10th here. It's definitely getting better and I think the change was more from having a better engine, better chassis and things like that.
Q. Just a week ago today you will forever be known as an Indianapolis 500 winner. Has it started to sink in
SCOTT DIXON: I guess parts of it has. I think after Texas, probably I'm going to get a break away from racing and you can sort of reflect back on the month of May. It's definitely a lot of fun. It's been tremendous. But since last Sunday, I've been home I think one night, and just been on the ball and on the go ever since. It's sinking in, but it's been a lot of hard work. I think after Texas.
Q. Was it as busy as you expected it to be?
SCOTT DIXON: It was busy. I think once you got to the mid pack, it was definitely very hard. There were guys racing just down the lead lap and for me that's always a cautious period because you're racing with guys that haven't got the car to be there. Don't want to go down that lap and get pretty desperate. I think that was the only problem with the traffic. And there was tons of it. That's what made the day so much fun is you had to weed through that stuff.
Q. Do you realize that the Australians are trying to claim you now?
SCOTT DIXON: It's not the first time. This will hopefully put the end to it. They can claim Briscoe now.
|Connect with The Crittenden Automotive Library|