IndyCar Series: Rexall Edmonton Indy
Topics: Rexall Edmonton Indy
July 26, 2009
THE MODERATOR: Helio, thank you very much. We'll see you next week.
Our race winner Will Power, his first win in the IndyCar Series, the fourth of his North America open-wheel career. His previous best was a second. That was in Long Beach. In five races this year, he has finished no worse than sixth.
Will, your previous best finish here prior was a sixth. So take us through your day out there.
WILL POWER: Well, it was an unusual day to remain green the whole time, and that's what we needed, pitted where we are. If we pit under yellow, we have a good chance of when we're leaving, the last car is coming in.
It was a great day. We had a really good car. It was very fast. In that first stint we pulled a big lead while saving fuel, and yeah, man, very good day. Very good weekend to get pole position and the race win, so very happy.
Q. Do you think you're passing your audition to get a full-time ride with this team?
WILL POWER: I'm not sure what more I can do, my friend. (Laughter.)
I haven't been thinking forward, I've just been doing each day at a time. That's one reason I'm enjoying my racing this year. In the last three years I've always been stressing about not having a ride the next year. This year I don't have a full-time ride but I'm enjoying my racing more than ever.
I think the situation and atmosphere within the team also contributes to that. You know, I've got two really good teammates. We all get on real well, and it's just -- these guys look after you. It's just a fantastic place to be driving.
Q. You went 94 laps cruising. Everything was going perfectly, and then the yellow comes out and you spend the last lap behind the pace car. How long did that feel for you to get that win?
WILL POWER: That last stint felt like it went forever. I remember John Erickson saying, "25 to go," and it just dragged on. I'm like, Come on, man, this thing has got to finish soon.
I guess when you're leading, you just want it to be over with. But yeah, it was good. I knew I had a big gap, so I wasn't too stressed. I was saving a bit of fuel to be on the safe side. Yeah, very good day.
I knew whenever we had clear track we'd be quicker than everyone.
Q. The lap traffic seemed to affect everybody toward the end of the race, held you up a little bit. What did you think overall?
WILL POWER: Yes, in the middle there Marco Andretti was very aggressive. I was trying to lap him, and he blocked me and chopped me. Yeah, I don't know what he was doing, but once I realized he wasn't going to make it easy, I just went to fuel save, and I lost the seven-second lead that I had. But that's racing.
Q. Just talk about the crew you've got. They don't know where they're going to be from one week to the other, but it sounds like you do.
WILL POWER: Yeah, they're a great group of guys. I love working with these guys. Every time we're together we're having success, you know. Man, I would love to be with those guys in a full-time manner next year. But that's a long way away.
We've never talked about it. I've just got to keep my head down and do a good job, and hopefully next year I can end up in a full-time ride somewhere.
Q. Obviously in the pole, the strategy I'm assuming is get to the front and stay there. Was there any point during the race where you were concerned, really concerned, by anybody behind you?
WILL POWER: Yeah, when I was getting held up, I really thought, Man, this is going to be tough. I've got to hold these guys off behind me, and I can't pass the two cars that are in front of me. Yeah, that was the only time in the race that I was concerned, because I wasn't sure how much those guys would save, and if they went a lap longer, chances are they would get around me.
When I pitted that time from behind Danica, I pushed on my out lap. My first three laps were really the hardest I've pushed all race to ensure that I had a handy lead.
Q. Was there anything you could compare and contrast your victory here to a couple years ago?
WILL POWER: I didn't win here. I was on pole. The last two years I've had mechanical failures. In 2007 I was leading and the steering rack broke. Last year the car broke on the first probably seven, eight laps. So I came back to finish the job.
Q. We talked yesterday about your fitness, and you said that the track fitness is something you just can't train for, and now you went 94 laps green. How do you feel, and was that a tough time for you?
WILL POWER: No, I had plenty of energy all the way through. I think my fitness, I'm very fit off the track, do a lot of every exercise in the gym, on the bike, running, everything, swimming. So my fitness -- I think the part of being able to pull away a bit, I didn't fatigue, I just kept trucking on. I felt really good.
Q. Your part-time crew that's bouncing back and forth, do you think the regular full-time guys are going to owe them dinner now or are you going to have bragging rights with the full-time guys?
WILL POWER: I think so. Everyone works so well within this team, anyone they put on your car is a good guy, because Penske Racing keep people for a long time, and they're all good people. So it's not -- by no means just a weekend crew. These guys are very good.
Q. Can you talk about what happened with the Penske crews coming over the wall to extinguish the fire with Tony? I'm not even sure you know what happened there.
WILL POWER: Yeah, I was out on the track. (Laughter.) I tried to look over but I was going so fast I couldn't see it.
Q. And the other thing is can you give us a clue about when you might race again?
WILL POWER: Next weekend, Kentucky.
Q. For sure?
WILL POWER: Yeah.
Q. Do you know the rest of the year?
WILL POWER: Yeah, Sonoma and Homestead.
Q. Were you at all concerned about the possibility of a full caution during this race that might come right in the pit window, because you did not have a very favorable pit location?
WILL POWER: Exactly. That's what I was saying at the beginning, I was concerned of that. I was really hoping it would stay green when the pit window was open, and that's what happened, because exactly that reason. If you're leading and you come in and you're way back where we are, chances are there will be some cars coming from the tail end as you're leaving.
That's exactly what happened to me at Surfers when we had a bad pit station, I got hit, and it ruined my day.
Q. I've got to ask you, in Toronto, I don't think you were the most comfortable walking around with a yellow race suit but you've done pretty well for two races.
WILL POWER: I love it. It might look a little bit bright, but if I'm ever around and there's someone unloading a Penske Truck rental truck, I walk around in this suit all day at home, I just walk up and say, "Need a hand?" They usually say, "Get out of here, Mate." Stand-up comedy is not my thing.
|Connect with The Crittenden Automotive Library|