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Orlando, Fla- The IndyCar Series is conducting their media day on Tuesday afternoon as they’re just over a month away from the season opening Firestone Grand Prix of St. Pete. Second-generation driver Graham Rahal thinks it should be a much better year for Honda’s at Indianapolis and the other oval tracks on the 2014 circuit.
“You probably won’t see performance gains on road/street courses like you’ll see on ovals. Especially Indy,” said Rahal at IndyCar’s Media day.
“I was impressed with Honda. To be as competitive as they were with Chevy with one turbo says a lot about what they’ve done,” Rahal added.
Why he thinks they will be better is due to Honda having to switch from a single turbo to a dual turbo like Chevy has been running in the upcoming season. Over the past two years, Chevrolet has dominated Honda in all the oval races and in the championship standings due to that.
In last year’s Indianapolis 500 qualifying, Chevy swept the top 10 starting spots and put 12 cars in the top 13 at the start of the race. On race day, they dominated as well as they swept the top four finishers and put six cars in the top seven. It was by far a Chevy dominated race as they led 193 of the 200 laps.
That’s why Rahal expects Honda to be back to normal and give Chevy a run for their money in this year’s Indianapolis 500. He expects it to be more like the 2012 race with the only difference being more speed throughout the month.
I hope he’s right. If so, we could be in for an even better Indy 500 than last year’s record setting race.
Eric Smith is the Lead Motorsports Writer for Race Review Online. He’s covered both NASCAR and IndyCar action since 2010 and has been credentialed to many races around the country. He’s also recognized as an accredited member of the media by both NASCAR and IndyCar. Follow him on Twitter @ericsportsguru
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