Nazareth, Pa., (May 3, 2001) - Grant Ryley (Worldspeed Motorsports/Northwest Speedwerx Swift) served himself up the best medicine today, after breaking a gearbox in the season opening race at Long Beach. The California rookie, who is running for...
Nazareth, Pa., (May 3, 2001) - Grant Ryley (Worldspeed Motorsports/Northwest Speedwerx Swift) served himself up the best medicine today, after breaking a gearbox in the season opening race at Long Beach. The California rookie, who is running for the first time at the Nazareth Speedway, topped the time charts after Thursday's test sessions.
Ryley turned a lap of 145.495 mph (23.407 seconds) in the afternoon session, narrowly edging out the time turned in by Brazil's Hoover Orsi (Hylton Motorsports/U.S. Print Swift). Orsi also logged his fastest lap of the day during the second session with a speed of 145.389 mph (23.424 seconds).
The Wordlspeed Motorsports team has shown strength early this season with Ryley at the helm. Ryley qualified fifth for the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach three weeks ago, but was only able to complete two laps before exiting the race with the gearbox failure. "The day started off pretty well," said Ryley. "We were third fastest this morning. This afternoon, we were third quickest for most of the session, and then, Mike (Doyle) made a few changes and took care of some of the problems we had been having, and then we were able to run some really fast laps. The car is fast right now and also a lot of fun to drive. After Long Beach, this is a really nice way to start the weekend."
Tony Ave (P-1 Racing/Miller Genuine Draft Swift) led the time sheets after the two-hour morning session but was not able to better the time in the afternoon. Ave's fastest lap this morning was 145.228 mph (23.450 seconds). "The day went really well," quoted the Wisconsin native, Ave. "We're trying to figure out what the car wants. The engine is running really well. Dave (Bruns) and the guys are going to tune it out a little here, and we'll be all set."
Another good showing in testing was turned in by Quebec, Canada, driver Stephan Roy (P-1 Racing/Momo Swift). Like Ryley, Roy dropped out of the Long Beach race with a mechanical failure. Roy was fourth fastest of the day with a speed of 145.080 mph (23.474 seconds). Rounding out the top five fastest drivers of the day was rookie, Joey Hand (DSTP Motorsports/BG Products Swift) with a speed of 144.342 mph (23.594 seconds).
Through four hours of track time, there was only one contact incident, which occurred in the morning session. Tom Wood (Worldspeed Motorsports/Super 8 Motels Swift) made contact with the Turn 4 wall. The car received damage to the left rear suspension and rear wing, but Wood was uninjured in the incident. Wood was unable to turn laps in the afternoon session. The morning session was slowed by three other yellow flag periods due to debris and slow car on course. The afternoon session was slowed only once when Rocky Moran (Condor Motorsports/Ariba Swift) pulled off course with an electrical problem.
The CART Toyota Atlantic teams return to the track on Friday morning at 8:45 a.m., for the first official practice session of the weekend.