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Simon Pagenaud, Schmidt-Hamilton Motorsports - Q&A

Can you talk about the end of the race when you got in the lead, you were challenged by a couple drivers. You can talk about the condition of your car, in terms of the tyres, did you have brake problems, and I know Bourdais got along side of you, could you just talk about what happened there?

Simon Pagenaud:
Yeah, you're going for a race win. I ended up getting some marble on my tyres in turn seven, and honestly, I didn't know it was that close, so I exited the corner and went back to the racing line and he was there. And we touched as he was braking. I got sucked into him, and the second touch put him out of line. It's not great. You know, I don't want to say that it's racing, that's the way it is; it's not great. But in the meantime, I'm not going to open the door. I'm going for a race win. I need this for the championship, and I had a good car and I knew if I could get going, I was going to pull off, pull away. It's one of those moments, out of many moments during the race, that were more hairy than this one.

But always clean; I want to always say, he's a good friend, he's very clean, and we both race and we both race for different teams and when it's time to go for the win, you go for the win.

Q:
You mentioned earlier that you were having some brake problems with brake fade and Josef Newgarden mentioned he was having the same problem. Is it a systematic thing or just because of conditions here?

Simon Pagenaud:
It's very hard on the brakes because we were going so fast down the straight and then we slow down so much, so it's a big stress on the brakes but it's also really hot. There's no breeze, no fresh air to cool the brakes down.

So I had the same thing last year, not as dramatic to be honest, but we were able to recover with the yellows, the yellow. And my experience in sports car helped me understand what to do with the brakes to get them back and they came back and that's why at the end we were so fast. That's pretty much normal.

Q:
You had touched on it earlier, you said you were aware of who was out of the race and who was still in contention. When you know that guys who have won consistently are out of the race and maybe guys like Marco who were trying to push a little, they have not won in a while does that give you confidence that, okay, you can do some things, you're just as experienced or just as capable as they are; or, does it matter who is in front of you or who is in contention?

Simon Pagenaud:
Well, like I explained earlier, I think, you know, you analyze who is your opponent; if it's Marco, I'm going to behave differently than Dario, for example, or Helio, and I'm starting to get to know them better as a racer. So you know their attitude and you know what they are going to do and you know that they are going to be good on exits; like Dixon, for example, is always good on exits. It's important to analyze that.

But today was my chance. I had to go for it. And if it didn't work out, it didn't work out. I would have been fifth in of the championship and the end of the day. It was a big opportunity today to grab and muscle a little bit.

Q:
As you said, you don't drive for one of the bigger teams with the huge resources. I'm sure you have confidence in your own talent but when you've sat down at the beginning of the year, did you envision in your wildest dreams that you were sitting here now for your second winner's interview at this point in the season?

Simon Pagenaud:
Why not? (Laughter) why not?




Related Pictures

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Simon Pagenaud leads Scott Dixon through the chicane during the Grand Prix of Baltimore on Sunday September 1 2013. (Photo Credit: John Cote for IndyCar Media)
Simon Pagenaud is congratulated by a celebrity fan after his victory in the Grand Prix of Baltimore presented by SRT on Sunday September 1 2013. (Photo Credit: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Simon Pagenaud celebrates victory in the Grand Prix of Baltimore presented by SRT on Sunday September 1 2013. (Photo Credit: John Cote for IndyCar Media)
Simon Pagenaud celebrates victory in the Grand Prix of Baltimore presented by SRT on Sunday September 1 2013. (Photo Credit: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Simon Pagenaud celebrates victory in the Grand Prix of Baltimore presented by SRT on Sunday September 1 2013. (Photo Credit: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
The podium of Josef Newgarden, Graham Rahal, and Scott Dixon celebrate with champagne following the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park on Sunday April 26 2015. (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Josef Newgarden crosses the finish line to win the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park on Sunday April 26 2015. (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Josef Newgarden in action in the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park on Sunday April 26 2015. (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Graham Rahal in action in the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park on Sunday April 26 2015. (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Graham Rahal celebrates in victory lane after finishing second in the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park on Sunday April 26 2015. (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
The podium of Josef Newgarden, Graham Rahal, and Scott Dixon celebrate in Victory Circle following the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park on Sunday April 26 2015. (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Josef Newgarden celebrates in victory lane after winning the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park on Sunday April 26 2015. (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
The podium of Josef Newgarden, Graham Rahal, and Scott Dixon celebrate in Victory Circle following the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park on Sunday April 26 2015. (Photo by: Joe Skibinski for IndyCar Media)
The podium of Josef Newgarden, Graham Rahal,and Scott Dixon hoist their trophies following the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park on Sunday April 26 2015. (Photo by: Joe Skibinski for IndyCar Media)
The podium of Josef Newgarden, Graham Rahal,and Scott Dixon hoist their trophies following the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park on Sunday April 26 2015. (Photo by: Joe Skibinski for IndyCar Media)
Scott Dixon, driver of the #9 Coke Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet IndyCar V6, races to a third place finish Sunday, April 25, 2015 during the Verizon IndyCar Series Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park in Birmingham, Alabama. (Photo by Phillip Abbott/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Josef Newgarden, driver of the #67 Hartman Oil CFH Racing Chevrolet V6 IndyCar, celebrates his victory Sunday, April 25, 2015 after winning the Verizon IndyCar Series Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park in Birmingham, Alabama. This is Newgarden`s first victory in the IndyCar series. (Photo by Gregg Ellman/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Josef Newgarden, driver of the #67 Hartman Oil CFH Racing Chevrolet V6 IndyCar, celebrates his victory Sunday, April 25, 2015 after winning the Verizon IndyCar Series Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park in Birmingham, Alabama. This is Newgarden`s first victory in the IndyCar series. (Photo by Michael L. Levitt/LAT for Chevy Racing)

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