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GRAND-AM ROLEX SPORTS CAR SERIES: BRICKYARD GRAND PRIX


July 27, 2012


Max Angelelli

Peter Baron

Sebastien Bourdais

Alex Papis

Scott Pruett

Memo Rojas

Ricky Taylor


INDIANAPOLIS, INDIANA

THE MODERATOR:テつ We'll start with our Daytona prototype class post‑race interviews for the Brickyard Grand Prix and we are joined first by our third place team, No.10, Sun Trust Racing Corvette DP co‑drivers Max Angelellii and Ricky Taylor.テつ Maybe we can get an opener from each of you about this historic afternoon.テつ Ricky, do you want to start us off?
RICKY TAYLOR:テつ Yeah, it was great to finally come to Indy and actually get to race here.テつ Just a great day.テつ I mean, the whole atmosphere and the feeling to be racing at Indy was really special for me.
You know, the race was very rough.テつ We didn't have much for the 2 car there at the end I think under green conditions.テつ You know, we are here, and we are not really in the championship right now, so on the restart, we are at Indy, first race with the Corvette, 60th anniversary, had to go for it, and just you know, pushed a little too hard and got on the water there and stood right off‑track.テつ Great day, really happy, to have a result after the couple of bad races we have been having.テつ But on to the next one.
MAX ANGELELLI:テつ I enjoyed my time in the car, it was very exciting and the conditions raining, and then dry and then back raining was very fun to drive.テつ And our Corvette was fast, very consistent, and now for the results, we finished the race.
THE MODERATOR:テつ We also have our runner‑up team in today's Brickyard Grand Prix, co‑drivers, Scott Pruett and Memo Rojas.テつ Scott, give us a review of the afternoon.
SCOTT PRUETT:テつ I think the hat says it all, super weekend, great weekend for us.テつ TELMEX BMW, we did a few driver changes, it rained and we got a bit of a tore up race car.テつ But we managed to scratch back and finish second.
So it was a great result and we were hoping to just get a little bit better.テつ But under the circumstances, we were incredibly pleased with the result.テつ It was a great race and a crazy race with the rain coming on and off.テつ And overall, we were proud to be here without a doubt.テつ It was exciting for the fans.テつ I know we were coming to the green with ten to go and everybody and all of the fans in the stands were on their feet.テつ So that's always a good thing to see.
MEMO ROJAS:テつ This is one of the craziest races we've had this year in a long time.テつ I think it was a good shot for everybody, because there was a lot of action going from dry to wet and vice versa.
For me it was going pretty good until my last stint where unfortunately, I was stopped by Bourdais a little bit.テつ He got me on the kick before braking for a turn, I think four or five, and under‑braking, I got a little locked up and unfortunately it was still dry land and damp on the outside and unfortunately slid around to the gravel.
Obviously I don't know you should end up in the same lap with a GT car which made me touch the wall.テつ Before that we were having a pretty good race.テつ I think we were pretty fast on the wet.テつ And I'm really proud of my team because with all‑‑ everybody seemed to be coming to the back to the front and there was a lot of changes in positions but we managed to survive to stay there and finish the race in second and that's the job of my team and by Scott to finish the race.

Q.テつ Inaudible.
SCOTT PRUETT:テつ Well, I kept yelling at the car in front of me because the white flag came out under yellow, and I was hoping he might get a little confused and drive down pit lane and he didn't do that.テつ You know, we'll come back and try and do it again.
I mean, to me, Indy is a very special place, very magical place, and you know, coming here my first year in '89, Rookie of the Year and IndyCars, the number of years we ran so close to winning this race in '95, and just an incredible race on a NASCAR side with Dale Earnhardt, Senior.テつ We ran all race long and it's a great memory.
So we were hopeful that we could come away from here with a victory, and it was more of a personal achievement for myself.テつ It would have been great for the team but it was a little selfish coming here because this is one of those places where you always want to win at.テつ We'll be back next year and see if we can do it again.

Q.テつ I know you didn't get a lot of time to run on the new compound when the sun was out, but for those of you that did, how did it handle in the race?テつ Did it work okay for you?
RICKY TAYLOR:テつ For me, this is the best generation of the Continental tire we've used for, you know, we'd love to use this the rest of the year if we could.
SCOTT PRUETT:テつ I think it showed the diversity.テつ It was torrential downpour out there.テつ It was not just a little bit of rain.テつ It was heavy rain.テつ Cars were more like boats a few times.テつ You know, you couldn't get the car turned, you were just floating across or skidding across either way.テつ All the way around, we were pleased and it's a difficult thing, because you're talking about a pretty big challenge with ever‑changing conditions and then you get a dry line and it's wet, there's a lot of guys going off, a lot of garbage, you're getting online, going off and you're asking a lot of the tire.テつ I think all of the competitors here were pretty pleased with the end result.

Q.テつ Scott, are you going to be like Paul Newman and come out with a salad dressing?
SCOTT PRUETT:テつ Yeah, I think so.テつ He raced, what, into his 70s?テつ 81.テつ So I'm just‑‑ okay, I'm 52, so I've got 30 years left in me.

Q.テつ You brought it up the other day‑‑
SCOTT PRUETT:テつ Hey, could we split it?テつ Was it like a lot of money?

Q.テつ Scott and Memo, the driver changes didn't look like they went according to plan.
SCOTT PRUETT:テつ You know, Memo started the race, he was doing an incredible job.テつ I jumped in and quite frankly just wasn't coming to grips with it.テつ We were about a half second off and a half second off is a long way.
So I told the guys, we said, Memo is running real strong in the rain and in drying conditions, let's take a look, it might be the best thing for the team to put him back in and continue on.
So that decision was made.テつ I'm not proud.テつ I want to do the best thing for the team and whatever we can to get up front, and because we were able to do pits‑‑ when we do our pit stops, we do driver changes quite quickly.テつ We continually practice that all the time, and felt that that was going to be our best play in this race and it worked out that I got back in at the end.
MEMO ROJAS:テつ Yeah, same, I was just‑‑ typically when they tell me to get out of the car, typically, unless it's a long race, we typically don't do two drivers changes.テつ Or you just relax you and just watch the race, the rest of the race like you're watching at home.テつ Suddenly they start yelling at me, and that was kind of freaky.
SCOTT PRUETT:テつ That's usually what they do to me all the time.
MEMO ROJAS:テつ You get used to it.テつ It was fun.

Q.テつ Memo, can you talk about what happened with that Camaro up on the banking in the last corner?
MEMO ROJAS:テつ Yeah, unfortunately, like I said, I got topped on that those first few laps by Bourdais and I got off line on the braking.テつ It was a drying track and I got off line and I just left the tires on the wet with the slick tires.テつ Got on the grass, got on the gravel, got a bunch of gravel.テつ These cars, they just big in and they just get gravel everywhere.
Those rocks were killing me and I don't know where they were coming from.テつ And when I got to the banking, on the braking at the end of the home straight‑‑ I was passing a lot of GT cars on the outside of turn one.テつ I passed a bunch, even in the wet, as well, so I was comfortable there.
I was just trying to get back up to speed and unfortunately sometimes you get rocks in the splitter in between, and when we got the big lull in the banking, I even heard the rocks just slid by and it's like walking like stepping on marbles and ice, a big slide up into the wall.テつ And unfortunately I rubbed the wall and the GT car was right next to me and I couldn't avoid it.
It was a shame, it wasn't intentional obviously, but it's one of those things.

Q.テつ Did the car handle any differently when you got back in it?
SCOTT PRUETT:テつ Yes, it did.テつ The steering wheel was a big turn but we just made the most of.テつ It looking at the car it looks pretty beat up, there's a couple of holes in the front, the side and the back, and fortunately we were able to take it on and finish.テつ And even better that we were able to finish second.テつ You know, it's just one of those things, you can never give up and even when it's not handling very good, but hopefully it's handling just a little bit better than everybody else's.

Q.テつ Max and Ricky, do you feel like the monkey is coming off your back with the luck you've had this season?
RICKY TAYLOR:テつ Yeah, it's nice, especially, you know, for me and the mistakes I've made this year, kind of letting the team down a couple of times, it's really hard on me.テつ You know, to have a good race and kind of real solid day really, was nice.テつ I think I'm sorry to say it wasn't all bad luck.テつ I think a lot of it was down to me, but yeah, it's nice to get over that.テつ I think the team is excited.テつ We are back where we should be.テつ And obviously we are thinking of Mark and the whole family, we lost a good friend over the break.テつ I know he was there with us today.
THE MODERATOR:テつ Thank you, guys, great effort today.
Truly pleased to be joined by today's Brickyard and DP overall winners.テつ In the process, they delivered Starworks Motorsport their first North American Endurance Championship Presented by VisitFlorida.com Championship.テつ We have Alex Papis, Sebastien Bourdais, the co‑drivers from the No. 2, and we have Peter Baron, the team owner.
Congratulations, guys, make we can just hear a quick opener from each of you.テつ That was fantastic.テつ Then we'll take questions.
PETER BARON:テつ What a great year our team is having.テつ I'm so proud of everybody, and we had a rough race with these guys at Watkins Glen.テつ We thought for sure they had a shot to win Watkins Glen, and you know, we had a little conflict with Lucas trying to get here.
And it was just so awesome having Sebastien coming and running great at the Six Hour with us.テつ It was a no‑brainer for us to invite him.テつ It was just if he could find time in his schedule to come here and help out.テつ He drove a killer under the stint.テつ And Alex needed a great job.テつ He's done a great job all year and finally some fruits have been able to be plucked for Alex here.
It's really incredible, when we looked at it at the start of the year, we thought there's another championship we created for Ganassi.
But Alex and everything they have done, the 8 car, they contributed a huge amount, both Alex and Enzo in the 8 car at Daytona.テつ In the 2 car, we had a little problem at The Glen so the 8 car had to help out at the six hour and then the 2 car helped out here.テつ This year, it's probably a first where I don't think anybody has won at is he bridge, Le Mans and Indy in the same year.
So we'll take that one.テつ I surround myself with great people.テつ No one says you have to be smart.テつ You just have to hire smart people and the guys that could drive fast.テつ Ryan is back there smiling, he helped us out (simultaneous speaking).
But everybody here is special.テつ And you know, I would love to show our budget and compare it against everybody else's, because it's probably half.テつ After Watkins Glen, we slept in a car at the airport, in different seats‑‑ and he yelled at me for snoring.テつ We are a special team and special guys and it's definitely a special result and I can't thank everybody enough.テつ Was that a short enough opening remark?
ALEX PAPIS:テつ It's amazing right now sitting here first place in the Brickyard is like a dream come true, you know.テつ It's something like I've been chasing the whole year.テつ I've won some challenge races, we won the Sebring, the 12 Hour in our class.テつ We were second in Daytona.テつ It was an amazing year for us so far.
And coming here and having the chance to win this race, my first race win in GRAND‑AM in Rolex and being here in Indy, it's so special.テつ I have to thank, you know, Peter, Ryan, especially Sebastien today for a great job, an incredible drive.テつ He was amazing.テつ We had the best car and the best driver out there today, and we demonstrated‑‑ at the beginning, I tried to keep the car clean.
But I almost did, not all bad.テつ I just bring it home safe and give a car to Sebastien to finish and get the first place and end in that first place that we were chasing for so long.
SEBASTIEN BOURDAIS:テつ That was a pretty special day.テつ Coming out after the test, I knew the car was really good.テつ We had 29:09 and nobody had done that and I felt really, really strong in the car.テつ Coming back this morning, it was fastest again, not really trying anything special.
So I'm like, we really have a shot at this if we can keep our nose clean and put it together.テつ For me, it's win No.1 of the season and so it's going to be a great season, because, you know, I've been winning a race every year for many, many seasons, and I was getting pretty worried out there.
So it's great to put it together midseason and get that out of the way and hopefully some more and it's just a cool bunch of guys.テつ These guys at Starworks, they are really fun to be around.テつ It's I guess always unpredictable.テつ But never boring or a lack of fun.テつ So I very much enjoyed every bit of it, and thank them for all of the shots that we got.テつ It was a great day, and hope that they are going to have a great end of the season.

Q.テつ Sebastien, talk about that final restart.テつ Obviously, you know, were you nervous at all going through that?
SEBASTIEN BOURDAIS:テつ I was nervous the first one, because I wasn't quite sure when I was supposed to accelerate.テつ I was testing yesterday at Mid‑Ohio, I wasn't there for that briefing.
So, okay, the team told me if you jump it you're going to drive through and if you accelerate too late, you're going to get eaten alive, so that's pretty nice.
Going into the first turn, I saw that in the inside it was going to be all right.テつ It was still wet so I was going into the edge of what the dry track was, and this No. 2 car was just capable of braking so much deeper than anybody else, it was crazy.テつ So I just went out there and braked as deep as possible.
Yeah, it just all worked out.テつ The last one as a little more challenging with Ricky coming alongside, and he broke really, really late, and so did I.テつ I nearly didn't make the corner.テつ It's just great that we could put it together, and you know, I knew we were not the fastest car in the straight, so probably we had a little more downforce than everybody else.テつ I knew I had to focus on distance before getting on the banking because otherwise that was not going to make it, so that was the only challenge really.
After that, the car was just checking out.テつ It was pretty awesome.テつ I just hope after the first restart, I was just hoping it was going to go green the whole distance, because that just looked really easy from there.

Q.テつ Peter, based on your TV interview, I think you might have fallen off Montoya's Christmas card list.テつ I was wondering beyond that, if you think‑‑ thinking back on what you said in the heat of the moment, are you still convinced that he was sent in as a hired begun to use the front bumper and if, so do you think GRAND‑AM is going to do anything about it?
PETER BARON:テつ I hope GRAND‑AM is going to do something about it.テつ The heat of the moment?テつ It was a yellow out there.テつ You can't pass a guy on the yellow and you definitely shouldn't be going off the grass and hitting another guy.テつ That's pretty black and white right there.
There's nothing to‑‑ heat of the moment, look, I've sent e‑mails to GRAND‑AM, phone calls to GRAND‑AM, saying Montoya is reckless in this series.テつ He comes in and he doesn't give, a profanity, about anybody here.テつ If he comments in, he wins great and if he balls it up, who cares and he showed that today.テつ He was going in the race on Sunday‑‑ ruined our championship, and the series needs to do something to take care of that.テつ I told him it was going to happen.テつ It happened.テつ That's a Christmas card list I don't want to be on with.
But I'm happy today.テつ (Laughter).

Q.テつ That's a hard act to follow.テつ I know previously that you've run the Speedway in the other direction in IndyCars, how much of that technical information from IndyCars were you able to apply to the GRAND‑AM car on this particular course?
SEBASTIEN BOURDAIS:テつ Let's put it this way.テつ You're in fourth gear and doing 170 or 160 by the time you get it to‑‑ it was a big win.テつ So there's just nothing that transfers.テつ It's a road course and the Super Speedway is a completely different animal when you're doing it at 220.テつ So this is just nothing at all.テつ It's really cool to come out there and get to kiss the brick.テつ So I'll take that any day.

Q.テつ In the 500, a Frenchman finished last.テつ And now you've brought back the strength of the French drivers.
SEBASTIEN BOURDAIS:テつ Well, he didn't finish.テつ He got parked and that's pretty bad.テつ But it has nothing to do with him.
I think like in 2005, we had a chance to be in the Top3 and I would have been really, really happy with that.テつ We just turned out‑‑ two laps to the end, that prevented us to the Top‑5, but, you know, who cares, that's the way it is.テつ That's the way racing goes.テつ Sometimes it goes your way and sometimes it doesn't.テつ I'm just really happy it went our way today.

Q. テつFor the three drivers, can you talk about the racing conditions, you were dry, you were wet, big rain storm, thunder, the whole thing?テつ What are the things you ran into and what are the challenges you had?
ALEX PAPIS:テつ It was easy to go to the grass definitely.テつ It was very hard to drive.テつ The conditions were very, very hard at the beginning, because you cannot even in the back straight just accelerate.テつ There was no way to go full throttle because the car was doing aquaplaning; it was floating over the water.テつ It was amazing.
At one point I went in to get rain tires, went out, and my engineer was telling me, "Watch the back straight."テつ As soon as he said that (laughing) it wasn't maybe halfway over the back straight, I just started floating over the water and make it to the end on to the grass.テつ It was amazing.テつ I couldn't talk on the radio and tell him, yeah, I'm floating on this moment, I'm going to the grass, I'm going to the grass.
I wasn't reporting what was happening when I was floating through the water, so I make it to the grass and I told him, we have to go in one more time and clean the radiator.テつ It was that hard.テつ It was that hard to keep it on track.
SEBASTIEN BOURDAIS:テつ I drove in the water but the hardest moment was to describe what it was going through ask, it was like this, it's going to ruin the tires.テつ He's on the radio for like four seconds and the entire time, it's like the wheels are not on the ground.テつ It didn't feel like it was going to be a great day from there.
No, it was very tricky, like Alex said, I didn't get the worst of it, but from what I can see it was bad enough.テつ It just turned out to be very, very, very slick, and actually, if it was not for the standing water, I think very early on, we would have been faster on the slick tires, which is kind of weird.テつ It just feels like the wet tire combination was not right for this track, because the grip we had just felt very abnormal.

Q.テつ To build on what you just said, we had a new compound here.テつ I know you spent very few laps on.テつ It how did it go?テつ This is directed towards all of you, whoever wants to answer.
SEBASTIEN BOURDAIS:テつ Yeah, I think the dry tire was awesome.テつ It was very durable, very consistent.テつ You could get great grip and to the point that you could actually drive it on the drying track, which was really nice.テつ But for some reason, it was just like, I don't know what happened with the wet but it just felt really off.テつ Like it was just.

Q.テつ Too much water?
SEBASTIEN BOURDAIS:テつ Even when it was drying, it was like the tire was not damaging itself or anything.テつ It felt strange that we were not getting the grip out of it.テつ It made it interesting.テつ A lot of guys got caught out and it was all about survival today until the end of the race.

Q.テつ Can any of you compare driving here with Daytona?テつ I know it's the 24 hour down there but the track facility and how they compare.
ALEX PAPIS:テつ Well I don't have that much experience in the Daytona just two Daytona 24‑Hour races but it was hard.テつ The track, I think because it's not that used like it's not too much rubber, too much grip.
So it's a good straight.テつ It's a good braking into the first corner.テつ After that braking, you have to go and find a way, there's only one line when the track rubbers up and there's only one line to get time.テつ You just move three feet away from the line, you're off, your time, you're three seconds off.

Q.テつ When you came in for fuel at the end and you had to go towards the end of the Daytona prototype and had to go past several former Champ Car competitors, does it make it special?
SEBASTIEN BOURDAIS:テつ No, I was thinking, boy, we're screwed, because I could see that we didn't have the top speed.テつ I think we were just a little bit too much downforce compared to the rest of the pack.
But also that's probably what won us the race because I could brake a lot deeper than anybody else and we were switching the tires where others seemed to struggle with that.テつ It just felt really, really strange, but yeah, when we pitted and I saw that nobody else was going in the pits, I thought, oh, boy, that's going to be a tough one.
And just to be able to grab that many positions at the restart was crucial and then they came in one by one was very special.テつ I couldn't ask for any better.

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