National Guard Panther Racing Prepares for Hildebrand’s First Start in Birmingham

J.R. Hildebrand, Panther Racing
J.R. Hildebrand, Panther Racing

Photo by: Eric Gilbert

LEEDS, Alabama - (April 8, 2011) – National Guard Panther Racing driver JR Hildebrand completed a total of 38 laps during IZOD IndyCar Series practice Friday at Barber Motorsports Park. The league rookie posted a quick lap of 111.119 mph, 1:14.5149 seconds on the tricky 17-turn, 2.38-mile permanent road course in preparation’s for Sunday afternoon’s Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama.

The Panther team will return to the track tomorrow for another practice session and IndyCar Series qualifications, which will determine the starting grid for Sunday’s 90-lap event. A total of 26 cars turned laps during today’s two practice sessions.

The Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama will be broadcast live this Sunday on VERSUS at 3 p.m. (ET) with additional coverage provided by the IMS Radio Network, XM Channel 145 and Sirius Channel 121.

JR Hildebrand, No. 4 National Guard Dallara Honda:

“We had a good test here last week and we’re trying to get back to the same form, and the conditions are obviously different, but not by enough that they should be equating to the type of trouble we’re having. There are a couple main issues that have been plaguing our ability to move forward throughout both the sessions today. Having the rain in the first session didn’t help us but the National Guard Panther Racing guys are working their butts off to get the things we’re having trouble with sorted out. The guys are working really hard and we’re figuring some things out and looking forward to tomorrow.”

-source: panther racing