KV Racing Technology's Mario Moraes Second, Townsend Bell Third Fastest During Indy 500 Practice
Bell Fastest of Unqualified Cars on Final Day Before Qualifying
SPEEDWAY, IN - - MAY 15, 2009 - - Round #4 2009 IndyCar Series season - - KV Racing Technology driver's Mario Moraes and Townsend Bell were second and third respectively during today's practice for the 2009 Indianapolis 500 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Speedway, Indiana.
Moraes, #5 KV Racing Technology -- Votorantim Honda/Dallara/Firestone, who qualified seventh last weekend with a four-lap average of 223.331 mph, continued to work on his race setup for the second consecutive day. Running close to half a 500-mile race, 98 laps, Moraes posted a fast time of 222.530 mph in race trim, which provides more downforce and is therefore slower than qualifying trim. Bell, #8 Herbalife -- KV Racing Technology Honda/Dallara/Firestone, who will attempt to qualify tomorrow, was the fastest of the cars that will try and get into the field for the 93rd running of the Indy 500. He ran a quick lap of 222.139 posting his fast time on the 76th and final lap he turned on the 2.5-mile superspeedway oval.
"Today was another very productive day for the KV Racing Technology -- Votorantim team," said Moraes. "We worked on different race setups again today and the car felt solid. Only once did we have a problem with the rear. Unfortunately, on my last lap, I went across the start/finish line and sucked up a brick, which damaged my car and ended my day. I feel bad for the crew because they are going to have to do some extra work tonight."
Commenting on his day Bell said, "It was a great day for the Herbalife - KVRT car. We went pretty quick with the race setup and made some long runs. The car felt really good. I've had the chance to run a couple of times at Indy before, but each time you come here you get a little smarter about of what you need to have to run good on race day. I'm pretty happy with where we are right now. We had a chance to work our way towards a qualifying setup on the last run. The car's obviously quick and I'm really excited about getting it into the field tomorrow."
Bell, 34, will be attempting to qualify for his third Indy 500. The native of California qualified 15th and finished 22nd in his Indy 500 debut in 2006 and qualified 12th and finished 10th in 2008. If Bell does get in the field he will join the 20-year-old Moraes, who will be contesting his second Indianapolis 500 and 12th race on an oval. The native of Brazil made his IMS debut last year, qualifying 28th and finishing 18th. Paul Tracy, #15 GEICO -- KV Racing Technology Honda/Dallara/Firestone, has also qualified an entry for KVRT posting a speed of 223.111 mph putting him 13th on the grid. Tracy will be making his sixth Indy 500 start. Should Bell qualify, KVRT will have put three cars in the field in just their second appearance at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Last year, in their inaugural Indy 500, KVRT qualified two cars. Oriol Servia started 25th and finished 11th while Will Power started 23rd and placed 13th.