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VERIZON INDYCAR SERIES: MAVTV 500


August 30, 2014


Simon Pagenaud


FONTANA, CALIFORNIA

THE MODERATOR:  We're joined by Simon Pagenaud.  Simon, disappointing night for you.  Just go through the events of the evening.
SIMON PAGENAUD:  Yeah, it's not the night I expected, actually, as you can imagine.  We don't really know what's happening with the car, but it certainly didn't handle the way we prepared it. 
So it's disappointing, mostly because the team has done a tremendous job.  And we have been fighting Team Penske through the last race, which everybody should be proud of.  It's been an incredible three years with Peterson Motorsports.  Disappointing I couldn't pull it off for them.  Tonight wasn't our night.
THE MODERATOR:  Questions? 

Q.  Did you have an inkling that the car wasn't doing what you wanted it to in the practice since the wreck, or did this just come on during the race today?
SIMON PAGENAUD:  Yeah, Wednesday night we were really strong.  And then after the crash we never got the car back to where it was for some reason.  We don't know what it is.  The team has been looking everywhere.  But the Speedway cars, the body work, the way it is, it may have changed.  But certainly didn't happen.  So it would be unfortunate that's the reason.  But it certainly never was the same.

Q.  You mentioned that your car was really good during the test.  But tonight was it the conditions, did you make setup adjustments that didn't go the right way?  Do you know what threw you off your game, I guess? 
SIMON PAGENAUD:  I don't have an answer for you guys tonight.  After I crashed on Wednesday night, we rebuilt the car.  Everybody checked everything.  But it never fit just as good. 
What is it, I have no idea.  And I don't think we have a clear understanding.  The car needs to be inspected and understood.  It just wasn't me tonight.  It wasn't a night we expected for sure.

Q.  Did you see Mikhail today?
SIMON PAGENAUD:  No, I got news from him but unfortunately I didn't see him.  I'll see him tomorrow morning, go see him over there.

Q.  Anything you can update us?
SIMON PAGENAUD:¬† I don't think that's my position to‑‑

Q.  No, no, on you in your future? 
SIMON PAGENAUD:  Not yet.

Q.  Have you made a decision?
SIMON PAGENAUD:  I'm going to sit down, starting tomorrow morning, once I'm a bit more relaxed, and make a decision about my future.  You'll be updated pretty quickly.

Q.  The answer is you've made a decision?
SIMON PAGENAUD:  Next two weeks. 

Q.  Irregardless of how your car handled, what were the conditions of the track overall during the race?
SIMON PAGENAUD:  I thought it was really good.  I thought compared to last year it was much cleaner.  Obviously there was no engine damage from the dust and the sand.  So the Speedway did a fantastic job.  It's a beautiful track.  A lot of fun for us to drive.  Provides great racing and I was happy.
I wish the car was not handling like it was and we would have had a good race.  It's a fun track.  Really is.  So good job and hope we come back.

Q.¬† What is it with the 500‑mile races this season that they've gone so long from the start of the race before seeing a caution?
SIMON PAGENAUD:  I think the level of driving is impressive in IndyCar Series.  Everybody's on top of their game.  Let me tell you, the cars are not easy to drive.  And it's just that everybody's doing a great job at preparing their cars.  The teams, definitely improved, and the drivers, they're really at a good level.  So I think everybody's taking care of each other as well. 
The package makes it so you can certainly race on new tires, when you're on older tires it's a bit more difficult.

Q.¬† Was there ever any thought throughout the weekend of going to a back‑up car once you realized when things weren't coming back to where they should be?
SIMON PAGENAUD:  No, it wasn't a big crash on Wednesday night.  Honestly the team made the right decision.  The team checked the car.  There's absolutely no criticism towards the team. 
I mean, this team in the last three years we positioned fifth, third and fifth in the championship.  How many people did that, right?  So this team is the proper team.  Really good.
Actually a top team, top five every year.  There's absolutely no question about what the decision was and something happened which we don't know yet.  We'll figure it out. 
THE MODERATOR:  Thank you. 

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports




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