GREAT COMEBACK FOR PANTHER DRR AND ORIOL SERVIA IN THE 96th RUNNING OF THE INDIANAPOLIS 500, TEAM FINISHES 4TH

RACE DAY NOTES/QUOTES---- Indianapolis, Indiana, May 27, 2012

Fast Facts:

  • Today marked a career-best result in the Indianapolis 500 for Oriol Servia and Panther DRR. This weekend was the Spaniard's fourth start and he finished the day with his best result for this race. It was the same story for the team. Today's race was Panther DRR's 13th start and their best result for the Indianapolis 500 race as well.
  • In the last five races combined, Servia has gained a total of 61 positions (7 positions in St. Pete to finish 16th, 13 positions in Barber to finish 13th, 7 positions in Long Beach to finish 16th, 12 positions in Brazil to finish 11th, and 22 positions in Indianapolis to finish 4th).
  • Servia qualified 27th for the race and had a roller coaster of a race that finished on an incredible high with a 4th place position, making him the second highest finisher for Chevy.
  • Oriol had a good start and bounced around in position. The yellow flag came out on Lap 14 and he came in for a full fill of fuel and tires on Lap 15 and filtered from 28th to 26th position.
  • The green flag waved on Lap 18, but on Lap 22 his Mecum Auctions machine got extremely loose due to his tire going down. As a result, he came in on Lap 23 and the team changed all four tires and topped him off on fuel. Unfortunately, Servia went down a lap and filtered back to P30.
  • The entire race Panther DRR and Servia worked to try to get his lap back, but the yellow flags did not fall the team's way until the last stint. He would come in on Laps 52 and 90 for a full fill of fuel and tires. On Lap 50, he came in for fuel only in an attempt to get his lap back, but unfortunately was unable to.
  • Servia came into the pits for a full fill of fuel and tires on Laps 125 and 147.
  • It wasn't until Lap 163 when things started to get interesting for Panher DRR. The caution came out on Lap 163 and Servia stayed out to get the wave around to get his lap back. On Lap 166, the Spaniard finally got his lap back and would pit for the final time on Lap 168, receiving a full fill of fuel and tires which put him as the last car on the lead lap in P18.
  • The re-start came out on Lap 171 and Servia made an amazing pass on the outside going from P18 to P13 in one lap. Another caution came out and with the re-start on Lap 186 he moved his way up to P8.
  • The yellow came back out on Lap 187 and when the green flag waved on Lap 193, Servia made another incredible move and went from P8 to P6.   On Lap 195 he passed Ryan Briscoe to put him in 5th position.
  • On Lap 199 the yellow came out for Takuma Sato, who was running second at the time, and as a result, Servia moved up to 4th position, where he would take the checkered flag.
  • The Mecum Auction Company was the primary sponsor on the No. 22 machine for the 96th Running of the Indianapolis 500.  Mecum Auctions has been specializing in the sale of collector cars for 25 years, now offering more than 10,000 vehicles per year.  Mecum Auctions is the world leader of collector car, classic motorcycle, vintage wooden boat and road art sales. Auctions are held throughout the United States and broadcast live on Discovery's Velocity Network. For further information, visit www.mecum.com or call 262.275.5050.
  • Teammate JR Hildebrand finishing 14th in the final standings in his No. 4 National Guard/Panther Racing entry.
  • Last year, Oriol qualified on the front row for Newman/Haas Racing. He started 3rd, finished 6th and led for 18 laps. In 2009, Servia ran for Rahal Letterman Racing and he started 25th and finished 26th as his day was ended early due to a mechanical issue. In 2008, he qualified 25th for KV Racing Technology and finished 11th. In 2002, Servia practiced for the month of May and attempted to qualify for Walker Racing, but did not make the show.
  • Last year Oriol Finished fourth in IZOD IndyCar Series standings....Recorded 11 top-10 finishes, with a best of second at New Hampshire and Baltimore....Among three drivers to be running at the finish in all 17 races..... Led all drivers in laps completed (2,103 of 2,011)....Oriol was the only driver to finish in the top 10 in first five races of the season.
  • DRR has competed in the Indy 500 for the last 12 years.  Last season the team ran four cars: Davey Hamilton (SP: 15th / FP: 24th), Justin Wilson (SP: 19th/ FP: 16th), Ana Beatriz (SP: 32nd/ FP: 21st), Paul Tracy (SP: 24th/ FP: 25th)...2010: Justin Wilson, Tomas Scheckter and Mike Conway all led laps for the 500-first time in DRR history for three of the four entries entered to lead the Indy 500. Wilson (SP: 11th /FP: 7th), Scheckter (SP: 20th / FP: 15th), Ana Beatriz (SP: 21st / FP: 21st). Both Bia and Mike had contact on the last lap of the race....2009: For the first time in the team's history, DRR entered four cars for the 500 with one of the entries being with Richard Petty (making it his first Indy 500 entry). Mike Conway (SP: 27th/ FP: 18th), John Andretti (SP: 28th / FP: 19th), Milka Duno (SP: 30th / FP: 20th), Davey Hamilton made contact (SP: 22nd / 29th).....2008: Buddy Rice (SP: 17th/ FP: 8th), Milka Duno (SP: 27th/ FP: 19th), Townsend Bell (SP: 12th/ FP: 10th).....2007: Sarah Fisher (SP: 21st/ FP: 18th), Buddy Rice (SP: 16th/ FP: 25th), Roger Yasukawa (SP: 23rd/ FP: 21st)....2006: Al Unser Jr (SP: 27th/ FP: 24th ---accident), Buddy Lazier (SP: 25th/ FP: 12th)....2005: Roger Yasukawa (SP: 17th/ FP: 18th -mechanical), Jeff Buknum (SP: 21st/ FP: 22nd -accident)....2004: Felipe Giaffone (SP: 25th/ FP: 15th), Buddy Lazier (SP: 28th/ FP: 23rd ---fuel system)...2003: Robbie Buhl (SP: 18th/FP: 22nd-engine), Sarah Fisher (SP: 24th/ 31st-engine/accident)...2002: Robbie Buhl (SP: 2nd/ FP: 16th), Sarah Fisher (SP: 9th/ FP: 23rd)....2001: Robbie Buhl (SP: 9th/ FP: 15th)...2000:Robbie Buhl (SP: 9th/ FP: 26th), Steve Knapp (SP: 27th/ FP: 19th)

 

Oriol Servia, No. 22 Panther DRR, on the 96th Running of the Indianapolis the 500: "I'm just so happy to bring the Mecum Auctions car home in 4th place. I also want to thank Panther DRR and Panther Racing. They made a huge effort in getting the two teams together and I hope bringing them a top-five satisfies the big effort it took to bring it together. It was the first race with Chevy power and we finished in the top-five.  We finished fourth in the biggest race of the season and in what fashion.  We had a flat tire in the first stint and we went a lap down.  We couldn't get our lap back until the last stint so it was tough work.  Once I had my lap back I was last, so I had to pass a lot of cars.  We had been working in the car the entire race.  Every stint we changed front and rear wings and tire pressures.  I had the best car when it counted, which was in the last stint.  It was awesome.  I was able to pass a lot of cars and get some prize money.  I told the guys before we started I wanted to get them some prize money today and we did."

Back on Track: Panther DRR will be back on track next week for the Chevrolet Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix. The race is scheduled for Sunday, June 3rd at 3:30 pm ET. Live coverage will be on ABC and the IMS Radio Network. Please visit www.dreyerreinboldracing.com for more updates.