Skip to content

Franchitti: “We do need a good result” at Long Beach

Apr 18, 2013, 2:30 PM EDT

IndyCar Pocono Test Auto Racing AP

Dario Franchitti is far from ready to throw in the towel on his 2013 campaign despite opening with back-to-back DNFs, but he realizes that Sunday’s Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach (4 p.m. ET, NBC Sports Network/NBC Sports Live Extra) is a critical race for him and his Target Chip Ganassi Racing team.

“We do need a good result — there’s no doubt,” Franchitti told sports talk titan Jim Rome on his radio show this morning. “There’s two very different reasons for those finishes — the first race at St. Petersburg [Fla.], the car just wasn’t very good and I crashed the thing just trying too hard to make something happen. And then at Barber, we got up to P6 very quickly in the race, so were looking good for a podium there, and then we had a mechanical failure.

“…We need to make some moves here pretty quickly if we want to get a good result in the [IZOD IndyCar Series] championship. But we’ll just take it the same way we have when we’re in the points leading — one race at a time. Myself and the whole Target team are focused to get back up the [standings] table.”

Franchitti also touched on his 250th start (on which he jokingly said that “it means [he's] getting old”), the upcoming Indianapolis 500, and the differences between being a driver pushing 40 years old and being a driver at 30.

“I think it comes down to desire,” the 39-year-old Scotsman told Rome. “There’s obviously the physical aspect, especially with the injuries I’ve had — that definitely plays a part as well. I have to work a lot harder with my fitness trainers to stay in the same shape I was ten years ago. Injuries are one part, but then, the desire is very, very important. You can’t fake that. As long as that is there, I think you’re in good shape.

“Yeah, as time goes on, your reactions start to slow down a little bit, and your eyesight and all those things — the things that happen to any athlete. Those things have not happened yet, and the desire is as strong as ever, so as long as that desire is there and you’re willing to take those risks necessary, then I think I’m in good shape because as you get more experience, it definitely plays into your strength as well.”

Latest Posts
  1. True Americana with a racing twist: Martinsville Speedway once again hosts high school prom after-party

    Apr 16, 2014, 8:40 PM EDT

    Two weeks after NASCAR made its most recent visit there, Martinsville Speedway's infield was transformed from a racing venue to a prom after party for students of Martinsville High School. (Photo courtesy Martinsville Speedway) Two weeks after NASCAR made its most recent visit there, Martinsville Speedway's infield was transformed from a racing venue to a prom after party for students of Martinsville High School. (Photo courtesy Martinsville Speedway)

    What do Martinsville Speedway, New York’s Central Park and a prom after-party have in common? They’re all one-in-the-same – kind of. For over a decade every April, NASCAR’s oldest racetrack has played host to Martinsville (Va.) High School’s prom after-party.

  2. Cooler heads prevail as IndyCar drivers test at Texas (VIDEO)

    Apr 16, 2014, 8:30 PM EDT

    Credit: Texas Motor Speedway Credit: Texas Motor Speedway

    A few days after a wild Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach, 18 car/driver combinations turned laps at Texas Motor Speedway this afternoon.

  3. Four-Wide win ties Pro Stock Motorcycle rider Andrew Hines with late NHRA legend, friend John Myers

    Apr 16, 2014, 8:09 PM EDT

    Andrew Hines (photo courtesy NHRA) Andrew Hines (photo courtesy NHRA)

    Sunday’s win in the Four-Wide Nationals at zMAX Dragway held special significance for NHRA Pro Stock Motorcycle rider Andrew Hines. The three-time NHRA PSM champion earned his 33rd national event win, tying him for third in Pro Stock Motorcycle’s wins list with the late John Myers.

  4. Motivation for Luiz Razia? The Long Beach podium staring him in the face

    Apr 16, 2014, 8:00 PM EDT

    F1 Testing in Jerez - Day Four Getty Images

    Schmidt Peterson driver Luiz Razia posts photo of the Long Beach podium to inspire him to get better.

  5. Marcus Jadotte, led NASCAR’s diversity initiative, leaving sanctioning body

    Apr 16, 2014, 7:29 PM EDT

    Marcus Jadotte

    Marcus Jadotte, one of the leading forces behind NASCAR’s Drive for Diversity program over nearly the last decade, announced Wednesday that he’s leaving as the organization’s vice president of public affairs and multicultural development.

  6. NASCAR AMERICA: Wednesday round-up (VIDEO)

    Apr 16, 2014, 6:38 PM EDT

    nascar america

    Steve Letarte, Ricky Rudd offer insights on Wednesday’s NASCAR AMERICA.

  7. Saavedra docked $10,000, placed on probation post-Long Beach

    Apr 16, 2014, 5:00 PM EDT

    Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach Getty Images

    Sebastian Saavedra fined $10,000 for yellow-flag infraction in Long Beach.

  8. Pirelli World Challenge: Bentleys confirmed for Dyson Racing

    Apr 16, 2014, 4:40 PM EDT

    Photo: Bentley Photo: Bentley

    Bentley confirms Pirelli World Challenge GT program with Dyson Racing, to premiere later in the year.

  9. Jeff Gordon has bad news for his rivals: He’s thinking of racing for 10 more years

    Apr 16, 2014, 4:09 PM EDT

    Is Jeff Gordon serious that he may continue racing in NASCAR for another 10 more years? Getty Images

    Jeff Gordon has said several times that if he were to win a fifth Sprint Cup crown, that he likely would retire after that championship season and go out on top. Some of his competitors may be looking forward to that day coming – and some hope it comes as soon as after this season so Gordon won’t continue to confound them in coming seasons as he has for the last 21 seasons. But ever the kind of guy who plays his cards close to the vest, Gordon may be getting ready to throw his fellow drivers and NASCAR fans a curve ball.

  10. NASCAR’s birthplace, the Streamline Hotel in Daytona Beach, to get significant makeover

    Apr 16, 2014, 3:41 PM EDT

    Daytona Beach's Streamline Hotel, where the foundation of NASCAR was formed in 1947. Daytona Beach's Streamline Hotel, where the foundation of NASCAR was formed in 1947.

    NASCAR’s birthplace, the Streamline Hotel in Daytona Beach, Fla., is going to be – well, streamlined. According to Wednesday’s Daytona Beach News-Journal, the hotel where NASCAR was formed back in 1947, will soon undergo extensive renovations to bring back some of the hotel’s luster of days gone by.

  11. IndyCar remix: Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach (VIDEO)

    Apr 16, 2014, 3:35 PM EDT

    Pagenaud Getty Images

    Relive the drama from Sunday’s Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach.

  12. Scott Bloomquist heads to Mississippi on heels of win and runner-up finishes

    Apr 16, 2014, 3:17 PM EDT

    Bloomquist 4-16-2014

    Scott Bloomquist just keeps motoring along in the National Dirt Racing League. Bloomquist is coming off a strong weekend performance where he was runnerup Saturday at Virginia Motor Speedway, and then for an encore won Sunday’s main event at Winchester (Tenn.) Speedway.

  13. Kentucky Speedway June Nationwide Series race to promote program encouraging use of designated drivers

    Apr 16, 2014, 2:42 PM EDT

    Bill and Muriel Elliott continue the memory of their son, Ensign John Elliott, who was killed by a drunk driver in 2000. Bill and Muriel Elliott continue the memory of their son, Ensign John Elliott, who was killed by a drunk driver in 2000.

    It’s rare that someone is happy to get or pay a traffic ticket from a state trooper. But thousands of NASCAR fans will gladly fork out their hard-earned money for a different kind of ticket, and one that carries the same kind of meaning as many of the tickets that police across the U.S. issue countless times each day.

  14. WATCH LIVE: NASCAR AMERICA at 5 p.m. ET — Rudd, Letarte, Hollywood Armstrong and why good restarts are key

    Apr 16, 2014, 2:08 PM EDT

    140416-NASCAR-AMERICA

    While much of NASCAR may be on its version of spring break, the NASCAR AMERICA team is hard at work to bring you some intriguing content. Rick Allen and Kyle Petty hold down the fort at the anchor desk on Wednesday’s show at 5 p.m. ET on NBCSN and NBC Sports Live Extra for your online or mobile device.

  15. Going through NASCAR withdrawal already? Here’s some intriguing numbers to devour

    Apr 16, 2014, 1:46 PM EDT

    Kyle Busch is closing in on a significant milestone: he needs to lead just 30 laps at Richmond on April 26 to reach 10,000 laps led in his Sprint Cup career. Given that he doesn't turn 29 until early May, Busch conceivably could hit 25,000 or maybe even 30,000 laps led in his career if he continues at his current pace. Getty Images

    NASCAR may have the upcoming weekend off for the Easter holiday, but that doesn’t mean its crack team of statisticians is on vacation like most of the drivers and teams. Even without a race, they’re still pumping out numbers that fans love to devour. So for an appetizer prior to next week’s countdown to the April 26 race at Richmond International Raceway, here’s some food for thought and to munch on

  16. McLaren looks for recovery after double DNF in Bahrain

    Apr 16, 2014, 1:00 PM EDT

    Jenson Button AP

    After Bahrain frustration, McLaren looks for big points in China.

  17. Could F1 have its sixth different winner in China in last six years?

    Apr 16, 2014, 12:03 PM EDT

    Force India Getty Images

    After five winners in last five Chinese Grands Prix, is a sixth possible?

  18. Le Mans: Satoshi Motoyama completes Nissan ZEOD RC lineup (VIDEO)

    Apr 16, 2014, 8:48 AM EDT

    Photo: Nissan NISMO Photo: Nissan NISMO

    All-electric Garage 56 prototype features another familiar Nissan name in his Le Mans return.

  19. Cup drivers expecting speeds to go up at Kansas

    Apr 15, 2014, 8:33 PM EDT

    Hollywood Casino 400 Getty Images

    If Sprint Cup drivers’ comments during today’s Goodyear tire test at Kansas Speedway are an indication, we can expect to see track records fall next month on the 1.5-mile oval.

  20. NASCAR AMERICA: Tuesday Round-Up (VIDEO)

    Apr 15, 2014, 7:30 PM EDT

    nascar america

    Kyle Petty breaks down critical pit strategies in recent races, and Nate Ryan reports on today’s Goodyear tire test at Kansas.

Today on NASCAR AMERICA

More from NASCAR America

Inside the Goodyear tire test at Kansas

Featured video

Recapping a race under Baharain lights
Top 10 NASCAR Driver Searches
  1. J. McMurray (24117)
  2. K. Harvick (6932)
  3. M. McDowell (3407)
  4. C. Edwards (1703)
  5. T. Bayne (1363)
  1. K. Busch (1199)
  2. J. Logano (1185)
  3. A. Seuss (1094)
  4. T. Stewart (1075)
  5. J. Bertuccio (985)