Castroneves posts month’s best: 227.046

Posted: May 17, 2010 in Uncategorized

Speedway Sightings …

By: Wm. LaDow
Daily Trackside Reports from the Indianapolis Motor Speedway
Published in the Post-Tribune — May 17, 2010
Speedway, Indiana

With teams trying to find a balance between race day and qualifying setups, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway became a beehive of activity during the combined Indy 500 Veteran/Rookie practice Sunday afternoon. Race teams completed 914 laps running 2,285 miles in just over 3 hours and 20 minutes, with the session being shortened by rain at 5:36 pm.

Penske Racing’s Helio Castroneves posted the fastest time of the month so far with a lap at 227.046 mph.

Thirty-Three cars made an appearance on the storied oval with only one being carted off after a fourth turn crash into the wall when it appeared that 2005 Indy 500 race winner Dan Wheldon, suffered a mechanical failure ending his day. Target Chip Ganassi’s Scott Dixon’s No. 9 car just barely cleared Weldon as the Panther Racing No. 4 car slid into the outside wall. Weldon was released by the IMS Clarian Infield Medical Center staff later in the afternoon.

Twenty-nine entries broke the 220 mph barrier during the course of the afternoon, with twenty cars being above the 222 mph mark

IMS opened the day with its Rookie Orientation Program (ROP) at 11am on a very gray and overcast morning. Seven drivers participated in the controlled process of gaining ROP certification, with all gaining approval for participation in qualifying for the upcoming 94th running of the Indianapolis 500.

Quickest of the rookie crop was Jay Howard in the No. 66 Service Central/Sarah Fisher Racing entry at 222.789 miles per hour. The second fastest rookie was Simona de Silvestro, in the No. 78T backup entry for HVM Racing at 221.370 mph. The Swiss driver is one of five women attempting to make the race.

After completing the ROP, several of the rookies joined the Indy 500 Veterans for the afternoon practice session.

Practice continues for the entire Indy 500 entry list at 12 noon, Monday. Gates open to the public at 9am.

Indy 500 Quote of the Day

“If it’s not scary in qualifying, you’re not going fast enough.” 2004 race winner Buddy Rice talking about the challenges of qualifying for the Indy 500. Rice won the 2004 Pole position with a speed of 222.024 miles per hour.

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