'FAST FRIDAY' AT INDY NOT AS QUITE AS FAST AS VISION DESIRED INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. - Final practice before "Pole Day" qualifying, aptly called "Fast Friday," was not quite as fast as Vision Racing drivers Ed Carpenter and Ryan Hunter-Reay would...
'FAST FRIDAY' AT INDY NOT AS QUITE AS FAST AS VISION DESIRED
INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. - Final practice before "Pole Day" qualifying, aptly called "Fast Friday," was not quite as fast as Vision Racing drivers Ed Carpenter and Ryan Hunter-Reay would have liked it to have been. Despite a little rain halting track activity periodically during the afternoon, progress and positive gains were made by the team throughout the day and especially during the last hour of practice, however the team remained lower on the speed chart than ultimately desired.
Carpenter again led the charge for Vision Racing while driving the No. 20 Menards/Vision Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone machine. He was 21st fastest at 222.021 mph and completed 68 laps on the 2.5-mile oval.
Carpenter is looking to qualify for his sixth Indianapolis 500-mile race and fifth with Vision Racing this weekend. Not to mention, Carpenter is also coming off his best ever month of May just last season when he started a career-best 10th at Indy, drove his first career IndyCar Series leader laps (3) and finished in a team and career-best fifth at the Brickyard.
Teammate Hunter-Reay and driver of the team's No. 21 Honda powered Dallara turned 58 laps with a top speed of 220.616 mph which was 28th fastest among 33 total cars the took to the track.
Hunter-Reay is aiming for his second attempt at Indianapolis this year and is looking to follow up the performance that earned him Rookie of the Year honors last year. In the 2008 race, driving for Rahal-Letterman Racing, Hunter-Reay started 20th and drove all the way up to finish just behind his now teammate Carpenter, in the sixth spot.
Top speeds and times listed in Thursday's post-practice release were inadvertently misreported by the team. In correction, Carpenter's top speed on Thursday was 222.572 mph and Hunter-Reay's best lap was 218.329 mph.
Ed Carpenter - No. 20 Menards/Vision Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone
On practice: "A little nervous about what its going to take to make the Top 11. It was kind of a strange day today with people running early because they thought it would rain and a lot of drafting going on. I don't really have a good sense of what speed it's going to take to make the field tomorrow. I'm questioning if we have enough speed right now to make it in the top-11 right now but still optimistic that we'll find a way in. We got a little more speed out of the car today than what we had yesterday and we ran most of the day which was good. Expectations for qualifying are to try to get the car qualified, I'm sure speeds will be up for everyone but I am anxious to see what it will take."
Ryan Hunter-Reay - No. 21 Vision Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone
On practice: "We went about our planned test list and made the car a little bit better and we are now at a team matched set-up and everything seems to be headed in the right direction and the car is handling well. We're just struggling to with overall speed and not sure why. It's easier to look forward to qualifying when you have a really fast car so I'm not certain what my expectations are. My realistic goal is to qualify in the teens. While I know that the race is a different story, speed is always something you want and a good qualifying position doesn't hurt but we are 70% concentrated on the race right now."