Edmonton Indy: Briscoe trying to move past frustrating finishes heading into Edmonton Indy
EDMONTON - The season is speeding by and Ryan Briscoe is still trying to find some traction, which is why he was particularly frustrated after the Toronto Indy.
Three laps from the finish of the July 8 race, Briscoe and Dario Franchitti got tangled up in turn three, dropping Briscoe into 18th spot. He had been looking at a top 10 result before the collision.
“Ah,” he began, “we were having a really strong race and it’s a shame the way it all ended up. That’s racing, I guess.”
Briscoe, who formerly ran the No. 6 car for Team Penske, was switched to the No. 2 car this season and rolled into Edmonton with one pole and four top 10 finishes.
The 30-year-old Australian-raised driver still hasn’t ruled out a move up the standings, and if history has any bearing on this weekend’s events, he will bear watching on the Edmonton track.
Briscoe finished fourth twice at the City Centre Airport – in 2009 and 2010 – and was 10th last July. In 2008, which was his first crack at the circuit, he was sixth.
“I feel like we’re just lacking results. The performance has felt good in the car and we do feel like we keep getting stronger,” Briscoe said. “I do have a new engineer this year (Jonathan Diuguid has replaced Eric Cowdin) and we do have a great relationship. It’s been a bit of a learning curve but really ... it’s been terrible luck lately.
“We’ve been running strong in the races. We have the speed. We’ve got all it takes. We just need a bit of luck.”
At the Iowa Corn Indy 250, which was the stop before Toronto, Briscoe had been leading when he was hit by Josef Newgarden. That’s the kind of season it’s been for Briscoe, who has also had to watch the lead change regularly in the driver standings.
Ryan Hunter-Reay has vaulted into first place after winning three straight races, while Franchitti, who won his fourth drivers’ championship in 2011, has struggled mightily. He’s in eighth spot, 13 points ahead of Briscoe.
“That almost makes it more frustrating,” Briscoe said, “because nobody is having the perfect year. So you feel like if you could have just been there all the time, you’d be right there fighting for the championship. Unfortunately, we just haven’t been able to get to that point. Too many DNFs.
“But yeah, if you look at the way it’s gone in the first half of the season, we just have to keep our heads down in the second half, stay focused, because I don’t feel like I’m totally out of it yet. We just need to get some results.
“You get three wins like Hunter-Reay has in the last few races, and it makes such a big difference. That’s what my focus is right now.”
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