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2014 Standings
After Pocono
Driver Standings

1 Will Power 446
2 Helio Castroneves 446
3 Simon Pagenaud 402
4 Juan Pablo Montoya 391
5 Ryan Hunter-Reay 388
6 Carlos Munoz (R) 340
7 Marco Andretti 325
8 Scott Dixon 297
9 Ryan Briscoe 285
10 Sebastien Bourdais 271
11 Tony Kanaan 267
12 James Hinchcliffe 266
13 Mikhail Aleshin 263
14 Justin Wilson 253
15 Charlie Kimball 239
16 Jack Hawksworth 227
17 Carlos Huertas (R) 224
18 Josef Newgarden 220
19 Graham Rahal 202
20 Sebastian Saavedra 196
21 Takuma Sato 189
22 Mike Conway 152
23 Ed Carpenter 138
24 Oriol Servia 88
25 Kurt Busch (R) 80
26 JR Hildebrand 66
27 Sage Karam (R) 57
28 James Davison (R) 34
29 Jacques Villeneuve 29
30 Alex Tagliani 28
31 Luca Filippi 24
32 Townsend Bell 22
33 Pippa Mann 21
34 Martin Plowman (R) 18
35 Buddy Lazier 11
36 Franck Montagny 8

Rookie of the Year
1 Carlos Munoz 340
2 Mikhail Aleshin 263
3 Jack Hawksworth 217
4 Carlos Huertas 204
5 Kurt Busch 80
6 Sage Karam 57
7 James Davison 34
8 Martin Plowman 18

T1 Ryan Hunter-Reay 2
T1 Will Power 2
T1 Simon Pagenaud 2
T4 Mike Conway 1
T4 Helio Castroneves 1
T4 Carlos Huertas 1
T4 Ed Carpenter 1
T4 Juan Pablo Montoya 1

Podium Finishes
T1 Will Power 5
T1 Helio Castroneves 5
2 Ryan Hunter-Reay 4
T3 Carlos Munoz 3
T3 Juan Pablo Montoya 3
T6 Marco Andretti 2
T6 Simon Pagenaud 2
T8 Mike Conway 1
T8 Carlos Huertas 1
T8 Scott Dixon 1
T8 Tony Kanaan 1
T8 Graham Rahal 1
T8 Charlie Kimball 1
T8 Ed Carpenter 1
T8 Jack Hawksworth 1
T8 Mikhail Aleshin 1

Lap Leaders:
1 Will Power 348
2 Helio Castroneves 174
3 Ryan Hunter-Reay 165
4 Ed Carpenter 116
5 Tony Kanaan 79
6 Juan Pablo Montoya 74
7 Takuma Sato 67
8 James Hinchcliffe 56
9 Simon Pagenaud 53
10 Jack Hawksworth 32
11 Scott Dixon 27
12 Marco Andretti 22
13 Justin Wilson 20
14 Sebastian Saavedra 14
15 Graham Rahal 10
16 Mike Conway 8
17 Josef Newgarden 8
T18 Oriol Servia 7
T18 Carlos Huertas 7
19 Ryan Briscoe 5
20 Mikhail Aleshin 4
21 Alex Tagliani 3
22 Sebastien Bourdais 2

Entrant Points
Pos. # Entrant Points
1 12 Team Penske 446
2 3 Team Penske 446
3 77 Schmidt Peterson Hamilton Motorsports 402
4 2 Team Penske 391
5 28 Andretti Autosport 388
6 34 Andretti Autosport/HVM 340
7 25 Andretti Autosport 325
8 9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing 297
9 20 Ed Carpenter Racing 290
10 8 NTT Data Chip Ganassi Racing 285
11 11 KVSH Racing 271
12 10 Target Chip Ganassi Racing 267
13 27 Andretti Autosport 266
14 7 SMP Racing 263
15 19 Dale Coyne Racing 253
16 83 Novo Nordisk Chip Ganassi Racing 239
17 98 BHA/BBM with Curb-Agajanian 227
18 18 Dale Coyne Racing 224
19 67 Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing 220
20 15 Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing 202
21 17 KV/AFS Racing 196
22 14 A.J. Foyt Racing 189
23 16 Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing 112
24 26 Andretti Autosport 88
25 21 Ed Carpenter Racing 66
26 22 Dreyer and Reinbold 57
27 33 KV Racing Technology 34
28 5 Schmidt Peterson Motorsports 29
29 68 Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing 28
30 6 KV Racing Technology 22
31 63 Dale Coyne Racing 21
32 41 A.J. Foyt Racing 18
33 91 Lazier Partners Racing 11

Finishing Average
1 Helio Castroneves 5.81
2 Kurt Busch 6.00
3 Will Power 6.09
4 Simon Pagenaud 6.72
5 Sage Karam 9.00
6 J.R. Hildebrand 10.00
T7 Scott Dixon 10.18
T7 Carlos Munoz 10.18
9 Juan Pablo Montoya 10.45
10 Ryan Hunter-Reay 10.72
11 Ryan Briscoe 11.75
12 Marco Andretti 12.125
13 Carlos Munoz 12.375
T14 Oriol Servia 12.5
T14 Justin Wilson 12.5
16 Alex Tagliani 13.0
17 Sebastien Bourdais 13.25
18 Charlie Kimball 13.625
19 Mike Conway 13.66
T20 Jacques Villeneuve 14.0
T20 Ed Carpenter 14.0
22 Carlos Huertas 14.25
23 Mikhail Aleshin 14.875
24 James Hinchcliffe 15.125
T25 Takuma Sato 15.5
T25 Jack Hawksworth 15.5
27 Sebastian Saavedra 15.75
28 James Davison 16.00
29 Josef Newgarden 16.375
30 Graham Rahal 16.625
31 Martin Plowman 20.5
32 Franck Montagny 22.0
33 Pippa Mann 24.0
34 Townsend Bell 25.0
35 Buddy Lazier 32.0

Pole Positions
T1 Takuma Sato 2
T1 Will Power 2
T1 Helio Castroneves 2
T4 Ryan Hunter-Reay 1
T4 Sebastian Saavedra 1
T4 Ed Carpenter 1
T4 Simon Pagenaud 1
T4 Juan Pablo Montoya 1

Appearances in the Firestone Fast Six
1 Ryan Hunter-Reay 4
T2 Scott Dixon 3
T2 Will Power 3
T2 James Hinchcliffe 3
T2 Helio Castroneves 3
T2 Jack Hawksworth 3
T7 Simon Pagenaud 2
T7 Josef Newgarden 2
T9 Takuma Sato 1
T9 Marco Andretti 1
T9 Sebastien Bourdais 1
T9 Tony Kanaan 1
T9 Sebastian Saavedra 1
T9 Mike Conway 1
T9 Juan Pablo Montoya 1
T9 Ryan Briscoe 1
Simona de Silvestro is gaining her confidence back

by Tim Wohlford
Thursday, March 29, 2012


Simona de Silvestro
After the 2011 St. Petersburg IndyCar race, I thought I recognized the driving style of a new driver -- bold, brash, and talented, fearlessly going against the big name veterans.  This is Paul Tracy's driving style, I thought, only perhaps with bigger balls.  Ironic, since I was watching Simona de Silvestro. 

As the year went by, Simona impressed the IndyCar world in quite another way with her bravery, when her year went from good to bad, and at times, to disastrous.  Bravery, after all, isn't the absence of fear, but rather the ability to function when one is scared witless.

Her new car -- named "Janet" -- that performed so well early in the season was destroyed in a nasty, fiery crash at Indy.  Worse yet, Simona was badly hurt, receiving third degree burns to the backs of both hands.  The week after Indy she was hurt again in a bad crash at Milwaukee, then missed the race at Iowa due her Milwaukee injuries.  Her backup car weighed more than the newer cars -- she named the car "Pork Chop" -- and it wasn't competitive much of the time. 

Since she didn't have the luxury of a backup car, she was forced into a very different driving style.  While she put on a great fan-friendly show -- for instance, referring to her bandages as "Mickey Mouse gloves" -- the truth was that she was struggling.  Simona sat down with in an exclusive interview just before this year's St. Pete race, and talked openly about where she's been, and where she's going.

"We started off with a great race here in St. Pete, but Indy was difficult.  It was really the first time where I said, 'I don't wanna do this.'  It really hurt me, and I wasn't sure (about) getting back in the car.  That was really the first time this happened to me.  I think it took me a while to get back my confidence.  It took for sure like 2 months." 

She continued, "We had so many races back to back, I never could really go away from it, and really think about what happened at Indy.  And what happened at Milwaukee was just kinda like, the top of everything.  We missed a race in Iowa, which was bad, but I think for me it was important to just kinda get away from it and really think about what just happened to me, and to start re-focusing."  Without pausing -- Simona rarely pauses when speaking -- she added, "Qualifying the car at Indy showed me that I'm meant to be a race car driver." 

One thing for sure is that her confidence is back.  The burns are healed, the scars barely visible.  She enjoys the complete confidence of her team, who seriously teases her.  These people are having fun, and she's as devoted to her team as they are to her.  She's also working with OMP on safety equipment --  "Way more of me was on fire than just my hands" -- including female-specific safety stuff. 

The conversation continued:  "The ovals still have my attention, especially with my experience on them.  It's been a bit difficult.  The road courses are just what my background is -- I'm used to it.  I know where the limit is on a road course, I know how to move the car on a road course, but on an oval I haven't really found it yet. 

Kentucky was the first time I had a car that felt really good on ovals, and it was like life changing.  It was like, 'Oh my God, this is awesome.'  I was actually having a lot of fun driving it." 

She keeps track of her old car, Pork Chop, with which she ran every race after the new car was destroyed at Indy.  "We love Pork Chop," she said, commenting that the car was now painted in Tampa Bay Buccaneer colors and on display locally in St. Pete.  She isn't in the mood to sell it back to the Andretti family, even if Marco got his first win in that car:  "It's mine, it's mine for now, I'm sure he wants it but I don't think I'm gonna give it back!"

The new car doesn't have a name, since she's wondering if naming the car might jinx it, but she likes the new Dallara car a lot.  "I think the new car is good.  I really enjoy it, racing.  The first couple of tests I did I really enjoyed it.  Pretty much all the things are on like carbon brakes, hand clutch handling -- it is what an open wheel car should feel like.  I think now we have all these assets in it to make it a great car.  I think there's so much potential in it.  We have to find that window where the car wants to be fast…. There's so many changes we can do to it, it's interesting… 

It's cool as a driver 'cause you can have a lot of input in it, even on the engine side.  It's been so interesting to see what we can do with the engine and work with the Lotus people.  It makes it really special for us."  It didn't escape Simona's notice that, on that day, she was the fastest of the Lotus cars, faster than Oriol and Sebastian. 

"Well, yah, you notice it a litttttleee bit (laughter)."  "I think everyone in the series is really talented right now, and it's cool to have engine manufacturers, because you have competition with everybody, but you still wanna be the fastest of your clan.  It's like a second competition added to it."

So would this racer, who while burned and bruised at Texas, Indy and Milwaukee got back into her car, consider running a USAC sprint or midget?  The answer would be, uh…. No.  "I've seen the cars, but they're too scary almost.  They're really impressive to watch, but I think I'm gonna stick to open wheel a little longer.  Its pretty gnarly out there!" 

Which is okay -- Jackie Stewart turned down a drive in a sprint car, and no one accuses him of cowardice.  And come to think of it, Fangio left for home after only a few laps at Indy.

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