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IndyCar’s James Hinchcliffe: Gearing up in Indy as 500 looms

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INDIANAPOLIS — Welcome to the Circle City, my hometown for the last seven years. Everyone here has been in the Christmas spirit since the calendar clicked over to May. That’s because we’re getting closer and closer to racing’s high holy holiday, the Indianapolis 500—which promises to be bigger and better than ever when the Verizon IndyCar Series runs through it for the 100th time on Memorial Day weekend. Of course there are plenty of boxes to tick on the to-do list before we get to May 29, not least of them being this Saturday’s race—the Angie’s List Grand Prix of Indianapolis, which you can catch at 3:30 p.m. Eastern on ABC. For those of you who are coming into town for the festivities, let me apologize in advance for the overpowering friendliness you’re likely to encounter upon arrival. We’re a very excited bunch.

The vibe at the Schmidt Peterson shop has remained no less upbeat in the two weeks we’ve been back from our last race, the Honda Grand Prix of Alabama. For the second straight race the No. 5 Arrow Honda was good right off the truck, which makes the job over the course of the weekend so much easier. We can focus more on getting more out of the package, getting the most out of me.

I was definitely a little frustrated after qualifying eighth. I probably left a tenth out there, which would’ve been enough to get us into the Firestone Fast 6. But a lot of guys could say the same in terms of woulda-coulda-shoulda. Getting a perfect lap at Barber Motorsports Park is just so difficult.

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