IRL: Indy 500: Honda Opening Day summary

Fernandez Fast For Honda as Indy Practice Begins Team owner/driver Adrian Fernandez posted the third-fastest time Sunday at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, leading five Honda drivers in the top 10 positions as official practice began for this ...

Fernandez Fast For Honda as Indy Practice Begins

Team owner/driver Adrian Fernandez posted the third-fastest time Sunday at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, leading five Honda drivers in the top 10 positions as official practice began for this year's 88th running of the Indianpolis 500 Mile Race.

In addition to Fernandez, Motegi race winner Dan Wheldon paced the field through the heat of the afternoon before ending the day fifth fastest for Andretti Green Racing. Honda newcomer Bruno Junqueira with Newman-Haas Racing joined Tony Kanaan and Bryan Herta of Andretti Green Racing in posting top-10 times as the week of daily practice began at the famed raceway.

Rookie Kosuke Matsuura also was listed in the top 10 for most of the day, but dropped two positions as track temperatures cooled and several other drivers posted quick laps during the final, "Happy Hour" of practice. Team Rahal's Buddy Rice ran only a handful of shakedown laps today, while teammates Vitor Meira and Roger Yasukawa ended the day 17th and 18th, just 33-thousandths of a second apart.

It was a clean opening day, with no significant incidents during the five hours of practice time. Drivers and teams will continue to practice through Friday, with "Pole Day" qualifying set to take place on Saturday, May 15.

Adrian Fernandez (#5 Quaker State/Tecate Fernandez Racing Honda) third fastest today: "We had a little bit of a late start today, as the team was preparing a brand new car for me. So, we didn't start practice until about 3 pm. But the car felt good, and I turned a 216 [mph lap] straight away. We made a few changes that improved the car, and managed to go faster still. My teammate, Kosuke [Matsuura], was quick too; I think he was fifth fastest at the time they stopped running today. So it was a good start and a confidence boost for the whole team."

-honda racing-

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Bruno Junqueira , Adrian Fernandez , Tony Kanaan , Bryan Herta , Dan Wheldon , Roger Yasukawa , Buddy Rice , Kosuke Matsuura , Vitor Meira