FOYT SECURES SPOT ON GRID AT INDIANAPOLIS SPEEDWAY, Indiana - Vision Racing driver A.J. Foyt IV has secured his spot for the 92nd running of the Indianapolis 500 in the 31st position. Foyt was able to complete a full four-lap qualifying attempt...
FOYT SECURES SPOT ON GRID AT INDIANAPOLIS
SPEEDWAY, Indiana - Vision Racing driver A.J. Foyt IV has secured his spot for the 92nd running of the Indianapolis 500 in the 31st position. Foyt was able to complete a full four-lap qualifying attempt at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in preparation for the 92nd running of the Indianapolis 500 early this afternoon. It was his first completed qualifying run of the month after spinning in his first attempt on May 10th, losing grip and bobbling in his second outing yesterday and pulling in on his third attempt, also yesterday, due to a gear box issue.
His average speed for the four laps today was 219.184 mph which will place the No. 2 Lilly/Vision Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone in the inside of row 11 next Sunday. His qualifying run also earned him the $10,000 Red Gold "Red Zone" Award for the single fastest qualifying lap on "Bump Day."
This will mark Foyt's fifth start at Indianapolis.
Foyt earned a career-best finish at Indianapolis last year driving for Vision Racing. He ran as high as eighth in his fourth try at Indianapolis and finished in the 14th spot. He also made his best start on the 2.5-mile oval last year when he started from the 18th spot. In three prior attempts at the Indianapolis in an Indy car, driving for Foyt Enterprises, Foyt started 23rd, 21st, and 28th between 2003 and 2005. During those years he finished 18th in 2003 (running), 33rd in 2004 (handling) and 28th in 2005 (handling).
In spite of qualifying well, Foyt's day was not without incident on track. During the middle of the afternoon, Foyt made contact with the turn 3 wall due to a mechanical failure. Foyt was promptly evaluated and released from the infield care center.
Foyt will join Vision Racing teammates Ed Carpenter and Davey Hamilton in The Greatest Spectacle of Racing.
Carpenter qualified his No. 20 Menards/Vision Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone in the top-10 last Saturday. The 10th place start will be the highest starting position at Indianapolis for Carpenter.
Returning for his fifth Indianapolis 500 in the eye-catching Menards machine, Carpenter has two 11th place finishes at Indianapolis and ran as high as fourth last year, but finished 17th when a heavy accident just ahead of him in the closing laps resulted in damage to his car, thus causing him to crash a lap just before race officials called the race due to rain. Carpenter led his Vision Racing teammates at Indy in 2006 with an 11th place finish, matching his finish from the year before.
Hamilton solidified his 18th grid position yesterday with a four-lap qualifying average of 222.017 mph in the No. 22 The Computer is Personal Again/HP/Kingdom Racing sponsored Vision Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone machine. That will put him on the outside of row six for the race.
At Indianapolis, Hamilton has a career-best start of eighth, both in 1997 and 1998 and a best-finish of fourth coming in 1998. The 45 year-old is making just his second IndyCar Series start since an accident at Texas Motor Speedway in 2001 left him with very serious leg and feet injuries.
Hamilton will be making his eighth start at Indianapolis. Last year Davey did an outstanding job in his return to Indianapolis after a six year hiatus, finishing in the top-10 and in the ninth position. The epic return to the cockpit and solid finish was viewed by many as one of the great stories coming out of the 91st running of the Indianapolis 500.
A.J. Foyt IV - No. 2 Lilly/Vision Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone
"It feels good to finally get the Lilly car into the field, but I've always seem to have had an exciting time trying to qualify at Indy. I guess I need to work on that, but it feels good to have all four laps in the books and to be in the show. It's been a tough couple of days, but with the weather conditions and yesterday the bad luck with the gear box, things just didn't seem to work for us. That's all unfortunate, but that's the way it was so we just had to focus on today and getting the car in today. So we put a good, solid car together and didn't worry about running any blistering fast laps. We just put in a good speed to put us safely in the field."
On accident: "I was just coming out of the pits and went down in the corner and something broke loose and I saw fire out my left-side mirror and started sliding backward to the wall. Obviously it was a hard hit. Something definitely happened - we just have to go back and investigate what happened and get our car ready for Carb Day."
Ed Carpenter - No. 20 Menards/Vision Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone
"I had a good day of practice today in the Menards car. I feel really good about my setup and what we have going into the race. It's nice to be able to work with the car today and get it to a point where we are happy with things. We'll get the car back out on Carb Day and make sure everything is still satisfactory and prepared for next Sunday."