IRL: Schroeder Texas qualifying

FORT WORTH, June 7 - Jeret Schroeder of Vineland, N.J., qualified 15th for Saturday night's Casino Magic 500 Indy Racing Northern Light Series race at Texas Motor Speedway during qualifications Thursday night at the 1.5-mile oval. Taped...

FORT WORTH, June 7 - Jeret Schroeder of Vineland, N.J., qualified 15th for Saturday night's Casino Magic 500 Indy Racing Northern Light Series race at Texas Motor Speedway during qualifications Thursday night at the 1.5-mile oval.

Taped coverage of the qualifying session will be broadcast from 12:30 a.m. to 1:30 a.m. EDT Saturday on ESPN2.

The race will be broadcast live on ESPN at 8 p.m. EDT Saturday night, preceded by a live half-hour pre-race show on the same network at 6 p.m. Saturday.

Schroeder was not in the Dallara he has driven in all of the previous Indy Racing Northern Light Series races so far this year, PDM Racing's Purity Products/Summit Packaging/Graph to Graphics #9. In a last-minute move, Schroeder stepped into the Dallara fielded by the team he competed with last year on this circuit, Tri-Star Motorsports' #6.

"PDM Racing chose not to attend this particular race due to a lack of sponsorship," Schroeder said. "This ride with Tri-Star is a one-race deal at the moment. We're all actively searching for funding in order to race. I have no idea how many teams I'll be with this year or even who I'm going to run with at the next race, Pikes Peak, but I feel certain something will turn up and I'll be able to do all the races. We really need additional sponsorship though."

Schroeder will start on the inside of row eight Saturday night beside one of the drivers he shared row eight with for the start of the Indy 500 last month, Buzz Calkins. His official qualifying speed was at an average of 211.089 mph.

Schroeder only received one qualifying lap rather than the usual two because his car was tardy getting to the qualifying line. The team had its hands full changing an engine right before qualifying, and Schroeder's qualifying lap was actually the systems check for that engine change.

"I was more worried about my line than anything else," Schroeder said after climbing out of the blue car which is sorely devoid of sponsorship decals.

"Right before I went out our gearbox guy said that the speed our fourth gear was turning was what the majority of the field was turning, so I used fourth gear the whole way around and made sure I wasn't going to need fifth.

"I was just trying to keep it on the shortest line here and try not to scrub any speed off. Everything went really quick; I was concentrating on my line more than what the car was doing.

"The steering wheel is still bumping around in my hands; we have it set up really soft. We just guessed on the ride height and the wing angle. Considering that was our leak-down test, I guess that's not too bad."

The front row is an all Kelley Racing row, as Mark Dismore won the MBNA Pole with his teammate, Scott Sharp, second. A total of 24 cars will start Saturday night's race.

-LM

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Buzz Calkins , Scott Sharp , Mark Dismore , Jeret Schroeder