IRL: Indy 500: Honda Opening Day report

Wheldon, Andretti head Honda opening day run Andretti Green Racing drivers Dan Wheldon and Michael Andretti paced the Honda-powered field as practice began for the 87th running of the Indianapolis 500 with a three hour session before rains cut...

Wheldon, Andretti head Honda opening day run

Andretti Green Racing drivers Dan Wheldon and Michael Andretti paced the Honda-powered field as practice began for the 87th running of the Indianapolis 500 with a three hour session before rains cut the day short at 4 p.m. EST. The event marks Honda's return to Indy for the first time since 1995.

Indy rookie Wheldon's best effort clocked in at just over one mile an hour off the pace set by IRL points leader Scott Sharp, who led the field. Andretti, preparing for his final race before retirement as a driver, was just a tick of the watch further back at 227.461 mph.

Driving for Team Rahal, former Indy 500 winner Kenny Brack was 11th on the day, with rookie points leader Roger Yasukawa 17th overall for Super Aguri Fernandez Racing.

Although not yet cleared to drive after suffering a broken wrist at a crash last month in Japan, Phoenix winner Tony Kanaan is expected to return to the wheel of this Andretti Green Honda by mid-week. Weather permitting, practice will continue Monday through Friday, from 11 a.m.-6 p.m. EDT. Pole qualifying takes place on Saturday, May 11, with live television coverage on ABC and ESPN.

Dan Wheldon (#26 Klein Tools/Jim Beam Andretti Green Racing Honda) fourth quickest today: "Today went really well. The team has done a good job preparing me for the Indianapolis 500 and the crew did a great job getting the car ready. We didn't have any problems and we were able to run fast right away. We have a set program we are working through and we aren't going to deviate from it. I'm happy we were fast today, but it is still early to get too excited."

-honda-

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Scott Sharp , Michael Andretti , Tony Kanaan , Kenny Brack , Dan Wheldon , Roger Yasukawa , Jim Beam