CTE Racing HVM Duo Fast and Familiar with Road America Indianapolis, IN (August 6, 2006) CTE Racing HVM wrapped up a two-day test at Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin on Friday. It was the first time Nelson Philippe and Dan Clarke...
CTE Racing HVM Duo Fast and Familiar with Road America
Indianapolis, IN (August 6, 2006) CTE Racing HVM wrapped up a two-day test at Road America in
Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin on Friday. It was the first time Nelson Philippe and Dan Clarke drove on the high speed road course.
"Our priority at Road America this week was to get our drivers familiar and comfortable with the track," said team manager, Vince Kremer. "Both Nelson and Dan adapted quickly and we're encouraged by the speed we showed while learning the track. We completed 687 miles between the two cars and we had a few small hiccups but that is what testing is for. We checked different aero packages and at the end of the test, I think we're all optimistic that we should have a successful weekend when we return in September."
Nelson Philippe has been a front runner all season and clocked the third fastest time of the test when he ran a 1:43.273-minute lap on the second of the two day outing. While Philippe is currently in his third season of Champ Car competition, he had never turned a lap on the historic circuit. "Overall I am satisfied because I had never run at Road America and it was my goal to learn the track quickly and make consistent progress. It took a couple of laps to feel at ease, but my first impression of the track is incredible; it is probably the best track I have ever been on. Our running was limited due to a few technical issues, so unfortunately we were not able to test everything we planned. However I think we found a good baseline to start with when we return in September."
Rookie Dan Clarke was particularly excited to make his debut on the 4.048--mile road course as it features a similar style to the European tracks Clarke is used to. In fact, Clarke had only competed on one street
circuit prior to his Champ Car debut at Long Beach and had never run on an oval. Despite his inexperience, he has run strong on the variety of disciplines Champ Car features. The Englishman was up to speed quickly, he set the fifth fastest time of the test (1:43.784) and was the fastest rookie over the two days. Clarke commented, "we had a productive test at Road America. First I had to learn the circuit: unlike the street circuits that I've been running recently this was a lot longer, with a lot more turns, not many trackside markers and some fast corners where you need to be brave and have commitment. We worked through a fairly intensive test program, trying lots of different set up changes which gave me the chance to evaluate the car on this track. Fifth fastest at the end of testing wasn't bad, although I think there was more left in us than we showed on track. I think we made headway and really used the time well, not just for the race at the track, but with some developments that we can put to use in the upcoming races."
Clarke and Philippe returned to the team's headquarters in Indianapolis, Indiana, where they are preparing for next week's Grad Prix of Denver, Round 10 of the 2006 Champ Car World Series. Catch the action Sunday, August 13th at 1:45 pm live on SPEED. The team will return to Road America for the Champ Car Grand Prix of Road America, September 22-24, 2006.