Ryan Hunter-Reay got behind the wheel of the No. 1 tonight for his last race of 2013 as reigning series champion. The American started from the 11th position and quickly made his way to the lead with the DHL Chevy. Forced to pit with a flat tire, Hunter-Reay slipped back in the pack and was unable to regain the lead due to cooling issues with the No. 1 machine. The issues caused Hunter-Reay to retire early from the race, recording a ninth-place result. He led for a total of 45 laps in the Inland Empire tonight, bringing his career laps led to 889.
“I think the DHL car could have won tonight; we led that whole first stint so it’s just really disappointing. We were running second when we had to come in for a flat tire, and then the overheating issues really are what ended the day for us. We came into the season determined to defend the No. 1, but had a lot of bad luck so it just didn’t play out. We’ll work hard this winter, come back next year and fight to earn the championship back. I want to thank everyone at DHL, Sun Drop, Chevy and the entire team for all their hard work and support this year. It was an honor for me to represent IndyCar as their champion this last season and it wouldn’t have been possible without so many great people standing behind me.”]]>
Ryan Hunter-Reay captured his first career championship at Auto Club Speedway in the 2012 IndyCar finale. Running inside the top 10 in morning practice, Hunter-Reay and the DHL Chevy will start tomorrow’s 500-mile race from the outside of Row 5.
“We have some imbalances we have to work on, but I’ve got great memories of this track from last year and certainly felt the most pressure I’ve ever felt in my life, and I wish I could do it all over again. It’s unfortunate we don’t have it all to put it the DHL Chevy on pole today, but it’s a part of racing. It’s the ebb and flow of the whole sport and I couldn’t be more thankful for the position I’m in. We have a shot to go for it (the championship) again next year, and I certainly believe that we can. We’re going to have some fun (tomorrow); we’re going to work on the car this evening in practice and hopefully make it a bit better. We’re really working on trying to use all lanes – that’s our biggest goal right now. We’re going for it (the win)… it may not be possible, but we’ll try it. I’m sure tomorrow night will be an exciting show.”]]>
Ranked sixth in the points standings, Ryan Hunter-Reay will return to Auto Club Speedway this weekend where he clinched the 2012 IndyCar title — his first career championship — one year ago. With 150 career starts under his belt, Hunter-Reay has led for a total of 844 laps during his career – 252 so far this season resulting in two victories and eight top-10 finishes.
“As a team we have some great memories of what we accomplished at this race track. This time last year we fought through adversity all weekend long to claim the overall championship by just a few points… what a comeback. We learned a heck of a lot about what we need to do different with our setup at this track, and following a successful test just a couple weeks ago, we’re optimistic headed into the final race. For one reason or another, things just haven’t gone our way this year despite recording three poles and two wins. We may not have the championship on the line Saturday night, but we’re really hungry for that third win this season. I think we’re ready.”
Did You Know: The 2013 ESPY winner is spending Wednesday meeting DHL employees at their Tempe, Arizona location, just one of the stops RHR has made this year getting to know more about the DHL family.]]>
Marking his 150th start during today’s penultimate race of the season, Ryan Hunter-Reay was seen as high as third place before experiencing a gearbox issue forcing the reigning series champion to pit. After remaining in the pits to receive a fix for five laps, the Florida resident continued and came home with a 21st-place finish.
“I think we had another podium going today. We were running third and then the gearbox broke – it’s another DNF for the DHL Chevy. We have just had horrible luck this year and I guess we just have to look at it as unfortunately circumstances and bad luck. It is what it is; I just hope Dario Franchitti is ok.”]]>
Reigning series champion and Texas-born Ryan Hunter-Reay took the green flag from the 15th position and was advancing on the competition early in the race. Working his way comfortably inside the top 10, the American was on target for a top-five finish when the No. 1 car suffered mechanical issues. Hunter-Reay was forced to retire from the 90-lap race on Lap 56 and recorded a 20th-place finish. He remains fifth in the points standings (unofficial) entering his 150th career start tomorrow.
“The dash just said low pressure, so something in the gear shifting mechanism lost pressure; I think we might have melted a line back there somehow. I don’t know how many races this season we’re sitting here watching the end of the race instead of being in it. We had a good day going on and the guys worked hard, I was hanging on to a car I’m not really comfortable with at the moment. We’re going to make some changes for tomorrow, but I think we had a top five car. The track is brutal, the heat isn’t an issue, but the bumps are just brutal and playing havoc on our setup right now.”]]>
With only three races remaining, reigning series champion Ryan Hunter-Reay enters this weekend’s 17th round of competition fifth in the series standings. The 32-year-old Florida resident has recorded two wins, three poles and eight top-10 finishes so far this season. Sunday’s Race Two of the doubleheader weekend will mark Hunter-Reay’s 150th career start in 10 years of competition.
“Houston will be a new challenge for us as a team as we’ve never competed at this circuit in the past. This is basically our last chance to really make a run at the championship. Helio (Castroneves, current points leader) will be in conservation mode at this point so we have to go for it. There are a lot of points on the table for this weekend, we just need to take it one session at a time and bring the DHL Chevy out on top.”
Did You Know: The reigning champ’s charity, Racing for Cancer, is bringing their iconic The Yellow Party to Houston on Oct. 3. Get your ticket by visiting https://yellowparty.ticketbud.com/houston.]]>
Reigning IZOD IndyCar® Champ to Meet Fans and Raise Cancer Awareness at AutoNation Chevrolet Gulf Freeway, Located at 13800 Gulf Freeway in Houston October 3 from 1 – 2:30 p.m.
Fort Lauderdale, FL (September 26, 2013) – Ryan Hunter-Reay knows something about important victories – the reigning IZOD IndyCar® champion has been racing against tough competition all his life. As challenging as his profession is, though, he knows that it’s nothing compared to the struggles that cancer patients have to face. That’s why he founded Racing For Cancer, a nonprofit organization dedicated to the prevention and early detection of cancer, after he lost his own mother to colon cancer four years ago.
While he’s in town for the Grand Pix of Houston, Ryan will be visiting the AutoNation Chevrolet Gulf Freeway Store to meet fans and honor special guest 4-year-old Kyssi Andrews, who has been battling cancer most of her life. Last year, AutoNation associates heard about her plight and raised money to help the family. Now she’s about to celebrate her 5th birthday, and that’s a greater victory than any checkered flag.
This open-to-the-public meet-and-greet is scheduled for October 3 from 1:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. at AutoNation’s Chevrolet Gulf Freeway store at 13800 Gulf Freeway in Houston. Kyssi will be in attendance, and Ryan will be signing autographs and posing for pictures.
AutoNation is proud to have teamed up with Ryan to promote his Racing for Cancer charity 501(C)3 organization. The group’s mission is “simply, to help beat cancer,” and they focus their efforts largely on early detection and prevention, with a special emphasis on childhood cancer. 100% of their proceeds go directly to cancer fighting efforts. Also supporting the cause is Houston-based and nationally renowned MD Anderson Cancer Center where Kyssi is receiving her treatment.
To shop any AutoNation retail location for a vehicle or find a store nearby, visit www.AutoNation.com. Investors and those seeking more information about the company should visit investors.autonation.com.]]>
Suffering a problem with the anti-stall mechanism on Lap 1, Ryan Hunter-Reay found his way at the back of the field before charging his way back up to eighth place. Just after hitting the halfway mark of the Grand Prix of Baltimore, the No. 1 car’s battery failed and was unable to be put into neutral to return to pit lane for a restart. The reigning IZOD IndyCar Series champion retired early with a 20th-place finish and is (unofficially) seen as fifth in the title fight.
“Yeah I believe in miracles, but that’s probably what it’s going to take now (to clinch the championship). Hard work and fight hard probably isn’t going to do it from here. I’m just so disappointed; we had an anti-stall mechanism kick in and it worked as it wasn’t supposed to, and I was supposed to be able to pull the clutch and get going with it. Unfortunately, I had to get it back to neutral, went back to the back of the pack, we were passing some cars, had a great car, and then out of nowhere the car just died – electronics cut out on it, battery voltage looked good and then all of a sudden it just fell through the bottom. It’s heartbreaking especially when you see Helio Castroneves stuck in Turn 1 and the fact that we’re sitting in here on the other side of the track. Thanks to all the fans for their support and thank you to our great partners at DHL, Sun Drop, Chevrolet, Circle K for sticking behind us. We had a great season, and there is still more to go and we can still win out here.”]]>
Ryan Hunter-Reay and the DHL Chevy will start tomorrow’s 75-lap race from the eighth grid position as he looks to close in on points leader Helio Castroneves with just four races remaining in the 2013 title fight. Hunter-Reay started last year’s Grand Prix of Baltimore from the 13th position and came away with his fourth win of the 2012 season, a pivotal moment in his championship win. Tomorrow will mark the 32-year-old’s 15th top-eight start of the year.
“Same thing as last year – almost the same exact circumstances; (Graham) Rahal put it into the wall and we didn’t get a lap time in that was capable of carrying us onto the next round. It’s part of it – it’s part of street course racing. I think we could have advanced to the (Firestone) Fast Six had we nailed everything today, but we’re just off a little too much at the moment. We’re going to go back, work on it and hopefully get a good race car under us. We’re starting better than we did last year so you have to look at the positives… and maybe hope for rain.”]]>
Racing for Cancer co-founder Ryan Hunter-Reay kicked off the Baltimore race weekend by raising funds to fight cancer; Hunter-Reay hosted The Yellow Party last night before taking to the streets today behind the wheel of the No. 1 DHL Chevy. The returning Grand Prix of Baltimore race winner will qualify in the first group tomorrow while he works to top his best Baltimore start of sixth (2011).
“It’s tough. Right now we need to regroup as a team and go forward with some testing tomorrow. We’re all a little bit off paced from where we need to be. At the moment, the way the curbs and chicanes are set up, you need to put your car at major risk to get the lap time. I’m not quite there on putting the DHL Chevy at full risk – we’ll see. I’m fully confident we’ll be on it for tomorrow.”]]>