LUYENDYK FASTEST AT FIRST DAY OF IRL OPEN TEST AT DOVER DOWNS DOVER, Del. -- June 15, 1998 - Arie Luyendyk set the quickest time and speed Monday among the seven Pep Boys Indy Racing League competitors taking part in the first day of the...
LUYENDYK FASTEST AT FIRST DAY OF IRL OPEN TEST AT DOVER DOWNS
DOVER, Del. -- June 15, 1998 - Arie Luyendyk set the quickest time and speed Monday among the seven Pep Boys Indy Racing League competitors taking part in the first day of the Pep Boys IRL Open Test at Dover Downs International Speedway, with a lap of 19.942 seconds, 180.524 mph.
Luyendyk's speed was nearly 25 miles per hour faster than the NASCAR Winston Cup track record of 155.898 mph set in May by Rusty Wallace. The Pep Boys IRL cars are almost a ton lighter and more aerodynamic than the Winston Cup cars, but nearly equal in horsepower.
"(The track is) fun to drive, kind of like Texas, only smaller and more bumpy," said Luyendyk of the one-mile, high-banked Dover track. "During the race the track will be challenging for the drivers at the exit of both turns. I think the drivers need to be aware of how narrow the track is there. With the guys running lap times as close as we are, it's going to be tough to pass during the race, but I think the draft may come into play."
Luyendyk's lap in the Sprint PCS G Force/Aurora/Firestone was only a fraction of a second quicker than the second-fastest lap of 19.958 seconds, 180.379 mph set by Tony Stewart. Stewart tested in the Johns Manville/Menards Special G Force/Aurora/Firestone car #32, normally driven by Stewart's teammate Robbie Buhl. "It is a challenging track," said Stewart. "Definitely not as smooth as other tracks we run, but that makes us work harder on our suspension packages. (With) the wing rule we have in the IRL, everywhere we go we have the ability to draft, so during this race I think you will definitely see some drafting going on."
The Team Menard car #32 is a G Force chassis, which Menard has not run in competition since the Dura-Lube 200 at Phoenix International Raceway in March. The team used the Dallara chassis at both the Indianapolis 500 and the True Value 500K at Texas Motor Speedway. "We won the race at the one-mile Orlando track with a G Force, and finished second with it at Phoenix, which is also a mile," said Team Menard Team Manager Larry Curry. "We have a lot more data on the G Force car at one-mile tracks."
Buhl is on-hand for the test, and may test in the #32 car tomorrow. Pep Boys IRL open testing at Dover Downs continues Tuesday. Testing concludes Wednesday with private tire testing by Goodyear and Firestone. The Inaugural Mid-Atlantic 400K, the sixth race of the 1998 Pep Boys IRL schedule, is scheduled for Sunday, July 19.
TOP UNOFFICIAL TIMES, SPEEDS OF THE DAY Driver Team Car/Engine/Tire Time Speed Arie Luyendyk Treadway Racing G Force/Aurora/Firestone 19.942 180.524 Tony Stewart Team Menard G Force/Aurora/Firestone 19.958 180.379 Scott Goodyear Panther Racing G Force/Aurora/Goodyear 20.221 178.033 Jeff Ward ISM Racing G Force/Aurora/Goodyear 20.227 177.979 John Paul Jr. Byrd/Cunningham G Force/Aurora/Firestone 20.292 177.410 Buzz Calkins Bradley Mtrspt G Force/Aurora/Goodyear 20.443 176.099 Sam Schmidt LP Racing, Inc. Dallara/Aurora/Firestone 20.948 171.854
Mid-Atlantic 400K tickets: Tickets for the Mid-Atlantic 400K at Dover Downs are available by calling Dover Downs at (800) 441-7223.