By A.J. Foyt
Let me start by saying I am not going to talk about the huge penalty my team received following the Toronto race because I don’t want to get another fine for speaking my mind about it. I’m angry. Period.
We had our first street race in about a month and as weird as it sounds, I was glad to be back on the streets. Toronto is a circuit where we don’t always start well but we’ve always finished—usually in the top 10. Unlike us, Mike Conway usually started well--in his first two races he qualified in the Firestone Fast Six--but hadn’t finished.
How happy were we when Mike finished third in the Honda Indy Toronto? Pretty damn happy. Third place was his and our best finish ever at Exhibition Place. Mike said the ABC Supply Honda was “awesome.”
I was happy not just because of the result but because everyone on my ABC Supply team did a really good job on race day. Our pit stops were solid and Mike drove like he did at Indy – passing cars with ease.
We made it tougher on him because we wanted to pit with the leaders—hell we were racing with the leaders, having come from 11th to fourth! Yes we started 11th because a couple cars had grid penalties related to engine changes. When Mike qualified 13th (his worst start here), he was more upset with himself than the car.
We improved the car after qualifying and Mike was third quick in the race morning warm-up. It helped that our engineers Don Halliday and Raul Prados had done a shaker rig test on our shocks at a center outside of Toronto last Tuesday. They learned a lot which played into the direction they took this weekend. It’s the kind of information that will pay off the rest of the year.