Takuma Sato didn’t have all that much to write home about in the 2015 Verizon IndyCar Series season, until the final two races of the season.
With an eighth-place finish at Sonoma, Sato earned his second-straight top 10. That brought his season total to five, with his season best a second-place finish in the second Detroit race.
“It was a tough start for us from 18th so we had to try a different strategy from the leaders – different pit stop sequence – in order to move forward. Indeed we did,” Sato said afterward.
The native of Japan credited his No. 14 crew for a “fantastic” job on all of its pit stops “to be able to fight on the track.”
At the beginning of the 85-lap race, Sato started his No. 14 ABC Supply Co. Honda in 18th, a few ticks below his average of 14th.
But Sato, who averaged a 18.8, credited his team for doing a “fantastic job” on pit stops to get his No. 14 car into the top 10 to “be able to fight on the track.”
“Had a couple overtakings which I really enjoyed,” said Sato, who finished between Will Power and Rodolfo Gonzalez.
“A top-10 is a good way to finish off the season and we learned so much because we had a two-car team this year which helped this team to move forward.”
Sato ended the 2015 season 14th in the driver standings, an improvement on his 18th spot in 2014.
The NTT IndyCar Series will be sharing Indianapolis Motor Speedway with the NASCAR Cup Series in a race weekend doubleheader for the second consecutive season, but both series will be on the road course in August 2021.
IMS announced Wednesday that IndyCar will hold an Aug. 14, 2021 race on its 14-turn, 2.439-mile road course. It’ll be a day before NASCAR’s premier series runs the same layout for the first time after the Brickyard 400 was contested on the 2.5-mile oval for the first time in 27 years.
This season’s rescheduling of the IndyCar GMR Grand Prix to July 4, 2019 (a day before the Brickyard 400) led to the first NASCAR-IndyCar doubleheader weekend. The Xfinity Series also raced on the IMS road course for the first time July 4 after the IndyCar race ended.
INDYCAR AT IMS THIS WEEKEND: Harvest GP schedule, entry lists
IndyCar will be holding its second race weekend this year at the IMS road course Friday and Saturday with the Harvest GP.
“Our first NASCAR-INDYCAR weekend was a big success last July, with positive feedback from
our loyal fans who watched the races on NBC and from the drivers, teams and participants
involved,” IMS president Douglas Boles said in a statement. “The Xfinity Series’ debut on the IMS road course provided exactly the kind of thrilling action from the green to checkered flags that we anticipated, so we know the teams and drivers of the Cup Series will put on a great show as they turn left and right for the first time at IMS.
“We can’t wait to welcome back fans to see NASCAR and INDYCAR together during this
exciting weekend as we add another memorable chapter in the long, storied history of the
Indianapolis Motor Speedway.”
It also will mark the first NASCAR Cup-IndyCar doubleheader with a crowd as fans weren’t permitted at IMS in July because of the novel coronvavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
Over the course of Wednesday, NASCAR is releasing its 36-race slate for next season. IndyCar has yet to release its full 2021 schedule.