Sunday at 3 p.m. ET it will be the Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio. The race airs on NBC Sports Network, with the radio on the IMS Radio network and Sirius XM Channel 211.
A quick look at the current IndyCar standing’s shows that the top four spots are being held down by Helio Castroneves in the No.3 Chevy of Team Penske, Scott Dixon in the No.9 Honda of Target Chip Ganassi Racing, the Chevy powered Andretti Autosport duo of defending IndyCar Champion Ryan Hunter-Reay in the No.1 car and his teammate Marco Andretti driving the No.25 car.
Simon Pagenaud rounds out the top five in the chase for the IndyCar Championship, driving the cool blue No. 77 Honda for Schmidt-Hamilton HP Motorsports. Pagenaud has proven that you don’t have to be driving for a super team to compete for a title.
This week at Mid – Ohio the Frenchman, who now calls Indianapolis home, sees a golden chance to win another race this season. In testing last week at the race course not far from Columbus, it was Pagenaud who posted the second fastest time right behind Hunter-Reay.
I spoke to Pagenaud about this week’s big race at Mid-Ohio and how his team has been able to compete with the big boys.
JW: Talk about Mid-Ohio
Pagenaud: It is like a European race course. I must say that it is one my favorite stops on the IndyCar series. It is a challenging course but very fair, I like that there are hills and good straight-a-ways. It really does make me home sick because there are a number of courses like Mid-Ohio, in France, Germany, Italy and Spain.
JW: What is the key to winning at Mid-Ohio?
Pagenaud: it really starts in qualifying at a race course like Mid-Ohio. While it is not totally a must, but to me it is key is being in one of the first eight on the starting grid. This is not a place where you want to come from the back of the field in hopes of winning.
JW: How do you explain your success this season?
Pagenaud: Well the team at Schmidt- Hamilton HP Motorsports has given me a great car to drive. My crew is fantastic and as a driver I have grown and I feel that this is one of my best years driving in the IndyCar series. We won at Detroit and we hope to keep buildingon that victory starting this week at Mid-Ohio.