HAMILTON TO START 18TH AT INDIANAPOLIS FOR VISION RACING
SPEEDWAY, Indiana - Vision Racing driver Davey Hamilton solidified his spot on the starting grid for the 92nd running of the Indianapolis 500 today. Hamilton will join teammate Ed Carpenter, who is starting 10th, as he will start the race from the 18th.
Hamilton recorded a four-lap qualifying average of 222.0717 mph in the No. 22 The Computer is Personal Again/HP/Kingdom Racing sponsored Vision Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone machine. That will put him on the outside of row six for the race.
At the Indianapolis, Hamilton has a career-best start of eighth, both in 1997 and 1998 and a best-finish of fourth coming in 1998. The 45 year-old is making just his second IndyCar Series start since an accident at Texas Motor Speedway in 2001 left him with very serious leg and feet injuries.
Hamilton will be making his eighth start at Indianapolis. Last year Davey did an outstanding job in his return to Indianapolis after a six year hiatus, finishing in the top-10 and in the ninth position. The epic return to the cockpit and solid finish was viewed by many as one of the great stories coming out of the 91st running of the Indianapolis 500.
Rain showers last Sunday forced Hamilton and team driver A.J. Foyt IV to wait until today to qualify for the Greatest Spectacle in Racing. However, a bobble with Foyt's car on his first qualifying run today, caused him to hold off until later in the afternoon to make a second attempt.
With 20 minutes remaining in the day, Foyt tried to make it in the field again, but was unable to qualify the No. 2 Lilly Diabetes/Vision Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone due to gearbox issues. Foyt's first run in qualifying today was quite similar to his only attempt last Saturday as he nearly made contact with the wall, but manage to keep the car clear of any damage.
Foyt will wait until tomorrow to make another attempt at making the 33-car field.
Carpenter qualified his No. 20 Menards/Vision Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone in the top-10 for the 92nd running of the Indianapolis 500 last weekend. The 10th place start will be the highest starting position at Indianapolis for Carpenter.
Returning for his fifth Indianapolis 500 in the eye-catching Menards machine, Carpenter has two 11th place finishes at Indianapolis and ran as high as fourth last year, but finished 17th when a heavy accident just ahead of him in the closing laps resulted in damage to his car, thus causing him to crash a lap just before race officials called the race due to rain. Carpenter led his Vision Racing teammates at Indy in 2006 with an 11th place finish, matching his finish from the year before.
A.J. Foyt IV - No. 2 Lilly Diabetes/Vision Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone
"I went out for my attempt and lost the gearbox. I tried to shift and it just wouldn't go into second gear and jumped into third. Then when I finally got it going it jumped back into second. It is really disappointing, but hopefully we'll get it fixed and get back out here tomorrow and qualify for the race."
Ed Carpenter - No. 20 Menards/Vision Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone
"I wanted to get in some more practice time today, but I was still happy to get out there and run a bit. The Menards car is pretty good and we just keep working with it in these changing conditions so that we are prepared for whatever race day throws at us. We have a good starting position so we want to make sure that we have a good car to take advantage of that and stay toward the front all race long."
Davey Hamilton - No. 22 The Computer is Personal Again/HP/Kingdom Racing Vision Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone
"The day started off really rough when we lost the gearbox in the morning practice. It got caught between gears which doesn't happen too often with the paddle shift and when it did, it broke the whole gear box. The whole Vision team chipped in and replaced the whole back of the car really quickly and we didn't have a chance to even put it on the set-up pad. We just went out and qualified it. The car lost a bit of speed and the push in turn 1 and 2 was big. This qualifying run was the toughest run I've ever had here, but we put it in with a decent time and the bottom line is that we're in. I started 20th last year and I was hoping to up that a lot more this year but no matter where we start, this is a quality team that works hard and I know we be ready to do well in the race."