Rahal Hindered By Car Issue On Grid, Finishes 17th at Season Opener

GRAHAM RAHAL, No. 15 Fleet Cost & Care Dallara/Honda/Firestone: "This one got away from us for sure. Our car was fast and I think the guys did a great job but we just had a lot of unforced errors and a couple of stop-and-go penalties. The car wouldn't start on the grid and needed to be reprogrammed. I said to the guys that the car was built perfectly; the car was fast today. I'm disappointed to come out of here with no points for either car considering we had fast race cars Off we go to the GMR Grand Prix and turn this around."

  • FAST FACTS: Rahal qualified seventh but was unable to leave the grid with the field to complete the pace laps after the car would not start. The team had to pull the car behind the pit wall and reprogram the ECU and he rejoined the field one lap down after the race started. The series penalized him for unapproved changes and re-entry from the garage and he was assessed a stop and go penalty which dropped him to three laps down and in 21st place. He was able to regain a lap later after a caution flag came out on Lap 38 of 200 for rookie VeeKay and Palou, who made contact. After his third stop on Lap 82 under caution for debris, he regained another lap to run one lap down to the leaders. There was a slight problem with the inside rear tire on his fourth stop on Lap 120 while he was running in 20th place but he did not lose a position other than track position. On Lap 146, race leader and eventual winner Dixon passed to put him two laps down. On Lap 156 he made another pit stop and had to maneuver around Ferrucci's car in the pit before him, due to Ferrucci being sideways in the pit box which lost Rahal a little time on his stop. He was in 18th when he had to serve a stop and go penalty on Lap 169 for running more than 35 green laps on a set of tires which dropped him to 20th. Second place runner Rosenqvist brought out a caution period when he crashed and soon thereafter Ericsson's car stopped in the pits with an issue. Those incidents, coupled with passing Hinchcliffe in the pits, moved Rahal to 17th by Lap 193, which he held until the checkered flag… Was his 13th race here… He has SIX INDYCAR SERIES wins (2008 - St. Pete street course; 2015 - Fontana Super Speedway, Mid-Ohio road course; 2016 - Texas Super Speedway; 2017 Detroit Race 1, Detroit Race 2) and THREE poles (2009 - St. Pete street course, Kansas oval; 2017 - Detroit Race 1 street) and his highest series season-ending standing is fourth place in 2015.