LONG BEACH, Calif. – In the fall of 2006, Larry Foyt was named team director of A.J. Foyt Racing. It was a position that carried duties the three-time Indianapolis 500 starter acknowledged he did not initially fully grasp.
“I always felt comfortable around Indy car racing because I grew up with it, but I had to get back into the Indy car mentality,” said Foyt, the son of racing legend and team owner A.J. Foyt. “They do some things differently from NASCAR and the (Indy) cars are more technologically advanced. I spent the first couple of years learning, watching a lot and listening, too.
“It was important see how things were done, analyze and see where we could improve and work to make changes in those areas. By making small changes, they can add up to big results on the track.”
Results have been mixed over the last few years for A.J. Foyt Racing, which has fielded entries for a variety of drivers. Results have been mixed for Takuma Sato, as well, in his three-plus seasons in the IZOD IndyCar Series with three teams.
He had a high finish of second last July at Edmonton, but received the most notoriety for his all-out effort to overtake Dario Franchitti for the lead in turn one on the final lap of the Indianapolis 500. Sato joined the Houston-based team this year.
Preparation has met promise head on early this season with the international pairing of Sato of Japan, race engineer Don Halliday of New Zealand and assistant engineer Raul Prados of Spain.