Skip to content

After Toronto success, Bourdais confident going into Mid-Ohio

Aug 1, 2013, 1:00 PM EDT

A busted trophy wasn’t going to bring Sebastien Bourdais down after scoring his first American open-wheel podium finish since 2007.

“I was so damn happy that we finally got a [good] result,” the Frenchman recalled this morning during an INDYCAR conference call. “Anything could have happened – I could’ve fallen off the podium – it would not have mattered at that point.

“Nobody could take away that result we were looking for. We’re not looking for trophies, we’re looking for results.”

Bourdais’ mishap with his runner-up prize following Race 1 of the Honda Indy Toronto doubleheader has been replayed many times and has likely caused more than a few chuckles. But his results at Exhibition Place were nothing to laugh at: Second in Race 1 and third in Race 2 – the best finishes for his Dragon Racing team in IZOD IndyCar Series competition.

Now, the scene has shifted to Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course for this weekend’s Honda Indy 200, in which he finished fourth last season (his best showing in 2012). Yesterday, he was fourth-quickest in the series’ Open Test on the 2.26-mile road course.

Bourdais was hesitant to say that Toronto marked a true shift in momentum for his team, instead maintaining that they simply found improvements on the car that helped them get in the lead pack. He also noted the contributions of new engineer Tom Brown, who took over duties for Bourdais’ No. 7 Chevrolet in Canada.

“When Firestone changed the tires for 2013, it just threw us…Every set-up we had from 2012 was just not working anymore, and everyone’s had to step up their game,” said Bourdais. “We had to look where we were stuck, and we just could not find the gains we needed to get back the form we had at the end of last year.

“Tom definitely looked at that and he had a couple of different ideas from his previous years’ experience, and [it] just kind of started to creep in the right direction…We definitely have a direction now of where we need to put the car in order to be competitive, and that’s what we’re going to try to do.”

Qualifying well on Saturday will be critical for Bourdais and Dragon to keep building on their performances from two weeks ago. Mid-Ohio’s flowing, technical nature always makes it very difficult to nail down a ‘perfect lap’ there, and while Bourdais wouldn’t call it the toughest place on the IndyCar circuit to achieve one (he saved that distinction for the street courses, citing their relative bumpiness), he said that it was “one of the most exciting places” when everything does come together.

“It is a very, very committing exercise where you’ve got to hang it all out and get the balance just perfect, sometimes being on the ragged edge, [the car] being a little oversteer-y, and you definitely can’t leave everything behind,” he said. “You have to just hang it all out there, or you just don’t make the cut.”

Watch this weekend’s Honda Indy 200 from Mid-Ohio online and on your mobile device.

Latest Posts
  1. Chase Elliott keeps winning, but he’s not finished capturing checkered flags this season by any stretch

    Jul 22, 2014, 1:38 AM EDT

    Chase Elliott after Saturday's win at Chicagoland Speedway. (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh) AP

    With the third win of his rookie Nationwide Series career, Chase Elliott continued to make it look easy in this past Saturday night’s EnjoyIllinois.com 300 at Chicagoland Speedway.

  2. NASCAR: Bubba Wallace prepares for Eldora’s “Mudsummer Classic” (VIDEO)

    Jul 21, 2014, 8:05 PM EDT

    (Photo: Jeff Zelevansky/Getty Images) Getty Images

    For Wallace and his Truck Series rivals, racing on dirt presents a different set of challenges – and thus requires a different way to train.

  3. NASCAR’s Brian France on RTA’s formation: “We didn’t think it was necessary”

    Jul 21, 2014, 7:01 PM EDT

    Brian France AP

    In a satellite radio interview, France shared his thoughts on the consortium of NASCAR’s most powerful teams.

  4. IMSA: IndyCar rookie Hawksworth to make sports car debut in Brickyard GP

    Jul 21, 2014, 6:02 PM EDT

    Jack Hawksworth AP

    Jack Hawksworth will co-drive the No. 08 Prototype Challenge car for RSR Racing in Friday’s IMSA event on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course.

  5. Eldora and Indy putting a lot on Tony Stewart’s plate

    Jul 21, 2014, 5:10 PM EDT

    Will the 16th time be the charm for Tony Stewart in Sunday's Daytona 500? Getty Images

    Between his Eldora Speedway hosting the Truck Series and then competing at Indianapolis this weekend in Sprint Cup, Stewart’s in the middle of a busy week.

  6. Everything you need to know for Sunday’s Brickyard 400 at Indy

    Jul 21, 2014, 3:45 PM EDT

    Juan Pablo Montoya AP

    All the notes and numbers to keep in mind for NASCAR’s visit to Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

  7. Hamlin best among NASCAR trio in American Century Champ. golf tourney (PHOTOS)

    Jul 21, 2014, 3:00 PM EDT

    Pocono 400 - Practice Getty Images

    One last bit of fun for Hamlin, Ricky Stenhouse Jr., and Michael Waltrip before the Sprint Cup Series returns to action at Indianapolis.

  8. Brickyard 400 ad promises “roundhouse of awesome, square in your facehole” (VIDEO)

    Jul 21, 2014, 2:15 PM EDT

    Ryan Newman AP

    Indianapolis Motor Speedway delivers a bizarre take on the classic “Sunday! Sunday! Sunday!” ads.

  9. Back to Bark River: TORC returns to Michigan’s U.P. (SPOILER)

    Jul 21, 2014, 1:30 PM EDT

    TORCLogo

    Writer’s Note: The following is a recap of this weekend’s TORC: The Off-Road Championship races from Bark River, Michigan. NBCSN will air the races on Sun., Aug. 3, at 1:30 p.m. ET. If you don’t want to know who won until then, we suggest you find another post to read here on MotorSportsTalk…

  10. IndyCar: Chevy captures doubleheader podium sweep in Toronto

    Jul 21, 2014, 1:00 PM EDT

    ChevyTOR Getty Images

    Chevrolet dominates the results sheet for IndyCar in Toronto.

  11. Pirelli World Challenge’s GT classes double up in Canada (SPOILER)

    Jul 21, 2014, 12:30 PM EDT

    WC

    Writer’s Note: The following is a recap of this weekend’s Pirelli World Challenge races from the streets of Toronto. NBCSN will broadcast the Toronto races on Sunday, Aug. 10, at 1:30 p.m. ET. If you don’t want to know who won until then, we suggest you find another post to read here on MotorSportsTalk…

  12. IndyCar: Coyne, SFHR, RLL tire gambles come up snake eyes in Toronto

    Jul 21, 2014, 12:00 PM EDT

    WilsonTORlead Getty Images

    Quartet of Hondas could have stolen the second of the Honda Indy Toronto races if not for the final red flag.

  13. IndyCar: Penske pair edge ahead in points at end of Toronto weekend

    Jul 21, 2014, 11:00 AM EDT

    PenskeTOR AP

    Podiums and successful damage limitation pay dividends for Team Penske teammates Will Power and Helio Castroneves in Toronto.

  14. Conway: I had to be calm and seize my moment

    Jul 21, 2014, 10:00 AM EDT

    ConwayTOR3 AP

    Opportunistic Mike Conway and Ed Carpenter Racing delivered on their opportunity to succeed once again in Toronto.

  15. Bourdais conquers the seven-year road back to an IndyCar race win

    Jul 21, 2014, 9:30 AM EDT

    BourdaisTOR12 AP

    Sebastien Bourdais is back to winning form in the Verizon IndyCar Series – and that’s a good thing for him and the series.

  16. Button: I overreacted to Hamilton’s overtake

    Jul 21, 2014, 9:00 AM EDT

    F1 Grand Prix of Germany - Qualifying Getty Images

    JB and Lewis went toe-to-toe in Germany, and although Button wasn’t pleased at first, he soon realised he overreacted.

  17. Massa points the finger at Magnussen for first corner crash

    Jul 21, 2014, 8:00 AM EDT

    F1 Grand Prix of Germany - Race Getty Images

    Stewards deem it to be a racing incident, but Massa is less than impressed by Magnussen’s move.

  18. Nico Hulkenberg satisfied to continue points streak

    Jul 21, 2014, 7:00 AM EDT

    F1 Grand Prix of Germany - Qualifying Getty Images

    German driver continues his points scoring streak on home soil.

  19. NHRA finals at Bandimere: Robert Hight over John Force in Funny Car, J.R. Todd wins first Top Fuel race since 2008

    Jul 21, 2014, 12:32 AM EDT

    Robert Hight, foreground, defeated father-in-law and boss John Force in the finals of Sunday's NHRA Mopar Mile-High Nationals at Bandimere Speedway. (Photo courtesy NHRA) Robert Hight, foreground, defeated father-in-law and boss John Force in the finals of Sunday's NHRA Mopar Mile-High Nationals at Bandimere Speedway. (Photo courtesy NHRA)

    If you’re an NHRA Funny Car fan and weren’t able to attend in person, suffice to say it was a heck of a battle in Sunday’s finals of the Mopar Mile-High Nationals at Bandimere Speedway in suburban Denver.

  20. Todd Gilliland, 14, outdistances father David, grandfather Butch in first time they’ve all raced together

    Jul 20, 2014, 10:48 PM EDT

    Butch, David and Todd (from left) Gilliland raced together for the first time ever at Irwindale Speedway in Southern California. (Photo courtesy the Gilliland family) Butch, David and Todd (from left) Gilliland raced together for the first time ever at Irwindale Speedway in Southern California. (Photo courtesy the Gilliland family)

    Todd Gilliland has learned virtually everything he knows about racing from his father, Sprint Cup driver David Gilliland, and grandfather and dominating former west coast racer Butch Gilliland.

More from NASCAR America

Keselowski in championship form

Featured video

Inside scoop with Adrian Sutil
Top 10 NASCAR Driver Searches
  1. E. Jones (556)
  2. K. Larson (534)
  3. S. Heckert (522)
  4. B. Scott (504)
  5. P. Menard (501)