IRL: Teams take to the track as Texas rain lets up

IRL: Teams take to the track as Texas rain lets up

FT.WORTH, TX, June 5, 2003 - Initial practice for the IndyCar Series is now over, having been postponed by several rain showers that washed over the north Texas vicinity throughout the day. Flags wave in strong winds and in rain ...

FT.WORTH, TX, June 5, 2003 - Initial practice for the IndyCar Series is now over, having been postponed by several rain showers that washed over the north Texas vicinity throughout the day.

Flags wave in strong winds and in rain showers.
Photo by indyracing.com/Ron McQueeney.
After the two groups completed their divided sessions, it was Tora Takagi's #12 Pioneer Panoz G Force/Toyota on top of the 23-car heap at 23.8465 seconds (219.655mph), with Tomas Scheckter's #10 Target Panoz G Force second (23.8687sec/219.451mph) and his teammate Scott Dixon in the #9 Target machine third, turning 23.9086 seconds (219.084mph).

The first practice group was interrupted when Airton Dare had a massive shunt in the #5 Conseco/A.J. Foyt Racing Panoz G Force/Toyota. Observers said the Brazilian first hugged the apron out of Turn 4, then bolted for the wall, taking a second hit near start/finish. Dare's machine erupted in an oil fire and came to rest on the grass verge that separates the track from pit road.

Dare disgustedly threw his steering wheel from the car, but it was a good ten minutes before the safety team extricated him from the mangled and burnt car. Dare was airlifted to nearby Parkland Hospital for observation and was awake and alert. He is, at this time, being examined for a possible broken right upper arm and right upper leg but is in good condition.

While Toyota-powered cars dominated the top ten in practice, Tony Kanaan crept into fourth place in the #11 Team 7-Eleven Dallara/Honda with a lap of 23.9334 seconds (218.857mph). Felipe Giaffone was fifth, followed by Al Unser Jr., Gil de Ferran (in a Panoz G Force while teammate Helio Castroneves continues with the Dallara/Toyota) and Scott Sharp, all riding with Toyota.

Honda drivers Kenny Brack and Roger Yasukawa, the latter fastest of the first practice group rounded out the top ten for this initial practice session. All 23 cars that practiced this evening traveled the 1.5-mile 24- degree banked oval within one second.

Qualifying commences at 8:45pm CDT (9:45pm EDT) tonight and we will bring you the details when single-car time trials are complete.

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Tomas Scheckter , Felipe Giaffone , Scott Sharp , Airton Daré , Gil de Ferran , Scott Dixon , Tony Kanaan , Tora Takagi , Kenny Brack , Roger Yasukawa , A.J. Foyt