IndyCar » 13 June 2011
Double-header races "cool" - but need changes
Saturday night's Firestone Twin 275 double-header was a success, but the blind draw attracted criticism especially from Dario Franchitti - which even race 2 winner Will Power agreed with.
The innovative double-header format trialled at Texas Motor Speedway on Saturday night - the first time the series has tried it in thirty years - has been broadly welcomed as a success by everyone concerned, except for the method of setting the race 2 starting order by blind draw.
"It was a fun race and great day," said Will Power, who was third in race 1 and claimed the win in the second race. "It was a good battle with Kanaan at the start and then Dixon came on strong. This is what we need for the championship."
"It was an exciting night, the new two-race format ended up working well for us," agreed Ryan Briscoe, who finished sixth in race 1 and third in race 2. "We just missed out on a Team Penske 1-2-3, but I think that we can feel very pleased with our result."
Charlie Kimball benefited from the way that cars who retired in race 1 were able to be fixed during the intermission and restart in race 2. "[The team] worked so fast to get the car turned over and not only that but it was a rocket ship, it was fast. It was unfortunate what happened in the first race [when he got loose and collected Wade Cunningham into the wall] but I learned from it and it showed in the second race. It was a long, hot night and we'll be in better shape when we come back."
"The two-race format is cool," agreed Indy 500 runner-up JR Hildebrand, who recorded a disappointing 23rd and 18th for the two races. "It gives you the chance to re-group, change more than just front wing and tire pressures and give it a shot again. I'd be all about doing it again. People complain a lot these days about race length, so I think doing something like this makes it that much more exciting."
Vitor Meira (eighth and 11th) agreed that the twin format was "surprisingly pretty cool," while Helio Castroneves said that "It was great!"
"I thought it was really good," added Helio, who finished 10th and 4th. "Certainly whoever has the fastest car goes to the front no matter what. And I do believe the fans enjoyed it, and I enjoyed it, but when the car's good you enjoy anything!"
"The two race format made things interesting today and hopefully good for the fans," said Marco Andretti (13th and sixth place respectively). "For me the difference between the first and second race was being able to use the third lane in the second race."
"Kind of cool!" said Scott Dixon about the evening's format, which saw him come second in both of the two races. "I think everybody put on a fantastic show. There was a lot of passing. Everybody kept it the right way out.
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