Team Outlook 2016: Rahal Letterman Lanigan looking to build on 2015 successes

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Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing

Drivers:

Graham Rahal, No. 15 Steak ‘n Shake Honda

Spencer Pigot, No. 16 Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing Honda

Chief engineers: Eddie Jones (Rahal), Neil Fife (Pigot)

Race strategists: Ricardo Nault (Rahal), Bobby Rahal/Jay O’Connell (Pigot)

Owners: Bobby Rahal, David Letterman, Mike Lanigan

2015 highlights: RLL was the little team that could in 2015. A one-car operation everywhere except the Indianapolis 500 and running the Honda engine/aero kit combination that found itself chasing Chevrolet much of the season, Graham Rahal plugged away at consistency and aggressive pursuit when opportunities arose. The result was a breakout season for Rahal with wins at Auto Club Speedway and Mid-Ohio, as well as a strong championship bid that went to the season finale before he wound up a career-best fourth in the standings.

What’s new for 2016: In this, the 25th season in which Bobby Rahal has owned an Indy car team, son Graham returns with essentially the same cast surrounding him. He will have a teammate for at least three races in rookie Spencer Pigot, the all-American who took his Mazda Road to Indy scholarship money for winning the 2015 Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires championship to RLL for the part-time ride. Pigot will race at St. Petersburg and in the two May events at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, plus others if funding can be secured.

They said it: On matching the results achieved in 2015, Graham Rahal said, “It's a tough one to live up to, but our goal, once again, we've got to be the top Honda team. We did that last year and we have to be that team once again. We're not that anchor team, but I think that we can perform the best of all their teams. We'd like to go for a championship. I think we proved last year that we can contend with the best of them. As a single car, it is tough. You're getting one car's worth of data and others are getting four plus, so that is tough, but it's our job, same as last year. Focus on the (No.) 15 car, do the best that we can. If we do that, I think we can be competitive with everybody. … We've spent a lot of time (in the offseason) refining the car. We've spent a lot of time working on the little details, and I think those little details will make a bigger difference this year than last. If you go look underneath the skin, so to speak, of our car, I guarantee you it's built as well as anybody.”

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