IRL: Chip Ganassi Racing Homestead test 2006-03-03

Strong Road Course Test for Target Team at Homestead Homestead, Florida, Friday, March 3, 2006 -- For the second consecutive day of testing on the 2.21 mile road course at Homestead-Miami Speedway, both Target Chip Ganassi Racing drivers ...

Strong Road Course Test for Target Team at Homestead

Homestead, Florida, Friday, March 3, 2006 -- For the second consecutive day of testing on the 2.21 mile road course at Homestead-Miami Speedway, both Target Chip Ganassi Racing drivers Scott Dixon and Dan Wheldon put in plenty of laps in their Honda-powered Panozes and both maintained their lap times in the top five throughout the open test days.

Scott Dixon (1:10.6675 min / 112.584 mph) ran 90 laps and held the top time for most of the day, only to be knocked off the top perch in the remaining minutes of practice by Helio Castroneves (1:10.5683 min / 112.742 mph) to claim second spot on the timing grid.

"It went well, "said Dixon of the two day road course test. "It was a good follow up to what we did in Phoenix. It's nice to be near the top of the scoreboard at the end of each day. I think we kind of got a little bit lost during the mid-part of the day with the compound of tires we had here. We didn't get much out of it in the last few runs. For a team test and everybody here, we got what we need to get done. Hopefully, we'll move up a qualifying spot for the St. Petersburg street race."

Sam Hornish (112.300 mph), Scott Sharp (112.240 mph) and Dario Franchitti (111.961 mph) rounded out the top five as teams turned 1,393 laps of incident free testing.

Dan Wheldon, who put in 104 laps on day two of testing on the road course in addition to the 75 laps he turned the first day, set a fast time of 1:11.0968 min (111.904 mph) early in the day but got bumped out of the top five in the final moments.

"It certainly was a very encouraging test," said Wheldon of his first road course test with the Target team and a Panoz chassis. "I learned quite a bit about the Panoz G Force and both my engineer Andy Brown and I are learning to work with it and each other. The timesheets really don't reflect the work that went into this test but they are very encouraging. I'm getting more comfortable with the Target team and it gives me a lot to look forward to."

The Target team now prepares their cars to test on the variably banked 1.5-mile oval at Homestead Miami speedway on March 5.

-cgr-

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Scott Sharp , Helio Castroneves , Dario Franchitti , Scott Dixon , Dan Wheldon , Chip Ganassi , Sam Hornis
Teams Chip Ganassi Racing