After tough Toronto run, Ryan Hunter-Reay has strong Mid-Ohio hopes

(Photo: IndyCar/Shawn Gritzmacher)

You’ve probably heard about Dorothy and Toto not being in Kansas anymore, but Ryan Hunter-Reay wondered if he really was in Toronto during Sunday’s Verizon IndyCar Series race.

For the second straight race, Hunter-Reay struggled to get consistent speed out of his Honda, to the point where he wondered if he somehow had gone back in time to the previous race at Iowa, instead, when he made an early exit one-third of the way through due to engine problems.

“I felt like I was still in Iowa there for a little bit,” Hunter-Reay told NBCSN after Sunday’s race, in which he finished 12th. “I just couldn’t do anything with the car, especially on the blacks (tires), the primaries.

“It was a struggle of a day, really couldn’t do anything with the car. Thought we had a promising direction for the DHL car in warm-up but it didn’t translate to the race.

“We were absolutely struggling out there, it was similar to Long Beach (finished 18th). The last couple road course races we finished third (Belle Isle Race 2) and fourth (Road America), but this one was far from that.”

With another road course coming up, Hunter-Reay hopes his luck and performance both turn around. The plan is simple, he said.

“We’ll need to go back and work on that and get back on the podium at Mid-Ohio.”

As for Toronto, a place that has been both good and bad to Hunter-Reay, he’ll put it in his rearview mirror, think about what might have been and then recall what actually was.

“Typical Toronto, it always happens that way,” he said. “Toronto has been kind of fire and ice for me. We’ve qualified top 4 here, we’ve won here, but this weekend, it was so off the mark.

“We’ll keep working at it, we’ve got a positive attitude about it and we’ll find our way out of it.”

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