Milwaukee: Sam Schmidt Motorsports qualifying notes

WADE CUNNINGHAM LEADS THE WAY FOR SAM SCHMIDT IN QUALIFYING AT MILWAUKEE WEST ALLIS, Wis. -- On Saturday, two practice sessions and qualifying took place for this weekend Firestone Indy Lights Husar's House of Fine Diamonds 100. Wade...

WADE CUNNINGHAM LEADS THE WAY FOR SAM SCHMIDT IN QUALIFYING AT MILWAUKEE

WEST ALLIS, Wis. -- On Saturday, two practice sessions and qualifying took place for this weekend Firestone Indy Lights Husar's House of Fine Diamonds 100. Wade Cunningham led the Sam Schmidt Motorsports trio by placing his car in fifth, followed by Gustavo Yacaman in sixth, and James Hinchcliffe in 10th. Sunday's event can be seen live via indycar.com at 12:30 p.m. EDT. The VERSUS tape-delay can be seen on Monday, June 1st, at 4 p.m. EDT.

SPEED READ

Wade Cunningham overcomes crash in first practice to earn top-five starting spot.
Gustavo Yacaman earns career best starting spot.
Confident Hinchcliffe looks to move up through the field during Sunday's race.

Wade Cunningham overcomes crash in first practice to earn top-five starting spot.

Just a few minutes into this morning's initial practice session, Wade Cunningham found himself between a figurative rock and hard place as right in front of his Lucas Oil car, Charlie Kimball was starting to spin out exiting Turn 2. With nowhere to go, Cunningham collected Kimball, ending both of their morning practice sessions. With a flat-out team effort, Sam Schmidt Motorsports was able to get Cunningham's car repaired and back onto the track for the afternoon's practice session, and even though Cunningham missed a large portion of track time overall, he was still able to reward the team's efforts with a fifth-place result in qualifying.

Gustavo Yacaman earns career best starting spot.

With a sixth-place result, Gustavo Yacaman celebrates his best qualifying result in his young Firestone Indy Lights career. His previous best starting spot was eighth (St. Pete Rd. 2). He will look to improve upon his season best finish of ninth (St. Pete, Long Beach) when the green flag flies on Sunday.

Confident Hinchcliffe looks to move up through the field during Sunday's race.

After being hampered with engine problems in the last two oval events, James Hinchcliffe entered Milwaukee with a new engine, and more importantly, a new outlook on his weekend. Looking for his first top-ten on an oval, he's practiced among the leaders all day. Though he's not starting as high up the order as he'd like, he's very confident in having a solid race car underneath him and looks to move up the field during the race.

DRIVER NOTES & QUOTES

#7 HINCHTOWN.com/Sam Schmidt Motorsports Driver James Hinchcliffe

Qualified 10th with a two-lap average of 144.825 mph.
Enters Milwaukee sixth in points.
Podium finisher 12 times in Atlantic Series, including two wins and six poles.

"I'm really looking forward to tomorrow's race because we did so bad in qualifying, we need to make up for it. Qualifying was always going to be tough because we drew first and, in this single-car format, that's always going to hurt you. If you look at (James) Davison and I, we're both in the top 4 in practice, we went first and second in qualifying and we ended up 9th and 10th in qualifying. So, nature of the beast a little bit. I'm confident that we're going to have a good race car. And Milwaukee's certainly a place where you can make up some ground in the race. So, having a fast car over two laps is certainly important but having a car at the end of the race after 100 is going to be a little bit more important. I'm really looking forward to getting there, getting that green flag tomorrow, and seeing what sort of head way we can make.

#11 LUCAS OIL/Sam Schmidt Motorsports Driver Wade Cunningham

Qualified fifth with a two-lap average of 146.387 mph.
Enters Milwaukee fifth in points.
Former Firestone Indy Lights Champion (2005); Two-time Freedom 100 winner ('06, '09).

"It was a good run for what we had. This morning, in the nine laps we had, we were third quickest when Charlie Kimball had spun out at the exit of turn 2 right in front of us. I was setting up to pass him, and I really didn't have anywhere to go and clipped him with the right front and tore that corner off, and, unfortunately, we damaged the under tray. So, that was us done for that session. We were lucky for the split sessions. We actually got back out for the second one since we were in the second group because of the qualifying order. So, I did get some practice in. But, unfortunately, because we missed fifty or sixty crucial laps from that first session we were just behind the eight-ball. We were struggling which is shown in the lap times in that second practice. So, as a consequence of that first accident we never got to do a new tire run in the second session because we had to start with them because we didn't get to start on old tires because we destroyed them in the accident. So, qualifying was always going to be a struggle for us right now. We hadn't bolted new tires on and we didn't know what the car had. So, Doug and I kind of had a bit of a dart board session in the office; threw darts. And fifth place is what we came up with. So really, considering, it could have been a lot worse. I'm not overly disappointed. The guy that's on pole did a massive lap. I think, even with the first session, we wouldn't have had anything for him. He obviously did a fantastic job and deserves the pole. So, I'm happy for the Lucas Oil guys. We're the strongest Schmidt car in the lineup. Fifth isn't really good enough, but it's the 100 laps tomorrow that counts."

#44 CREPES & WAFFLES/TUVACOL/Sam Schmidt Motorsports Driver Gustavo Yacaman

Qualified sixth with a two-lap average of 146.283 mph.
Enters Milwaukee 13th in points.
Youngest driver in Firestone Indy Lights field.

"Well, I think it's pretty good. We're sixth now. Pretty sure we could have done better. You know, I kept a little bit to myself. I didn't want to put it in the fence. We were having a little trouble on the out lap during the practice session. So, I kind of kept it together. You know, considering what I said, we're pretty good."

-credit: ssm

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series INDYLIGHTS

Latest headlines

Latest photos

StartEUROF3NorisringStart28/06/2014 04:14

Latest photos

Cesar RamosBSSZandvoortCesar Ramos06/07/2014 06:40

Latest videos

Latest headlines

Latest photos

Latest videos