Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Hunter-Reay Still Seething over Sonoma

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Hunter-Reay Still Seething over Sonoma

Article excerpt

There might come a day when Ryan Hunter-Reay forgives Alex Tagliani for running into him at Sonoma.

It probably won't come before this weekend's race at Baltimore.

Hunter-Reay is still seething over an incident with Tagliani last Sunday at Sonoma that drastically hurt his chances to win his first IndyCar championship. The American was likely headed to a third- place finish when he was hit by Tagliani, who isn't involved in the title race.

"I know in years past, when I was racing with guys racing for the championship, you absolutely have to have that in mind," Hunter- Reay said Wednesday. "You must be thinking to yourself, 'I am not going to be a factor in this because I am not in the championship race.' "

"Unfortunately, Tagliani became a factor in this championship."

Hunter-Reay wound up 18th, a 23-point swing in the standings. He goes into today's race trailing leader Will Power by 36 points with two events remaining to decide the champion.

Tagliani tried to apologize to Hunter-Reay after the race, but Hunter-Reay admits he was "infuriated with him" and didn't want to hear what Tagliani had to say.

Tagliani vowed Wednesday to keep trying.

"I will apologize every day I see him until you know that you can move on and understand," he said. "That's the only thing I can do. I'm not going to hide behind my mistake. Other than that, I can't do anything else."

But, Tagliani wasn't apologizing for racing hard.

His Bryan Herta Autosport team was handcuffed at the start of the season with an underperforming Lotus engine, and Tagliani has had to dig out of that hole all season. His team has shown flashes and he's trying to position BHA for critical monetary bonuses the team could be eligible for next season.

"We earned the right to race against anybody out there," Tagliani said. "We need to be in the Leaders Circle [program] next year, so it's very important we grab as many points as possible. …

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