IRL: Homestead Infiniti Friday practice report

Infiniti Grand Prix of Miami Kicks Off With Practice Cheever Fastest Infiniti Driver With Top Ten Speed Homestead, Fla. (April 6, 2001) -- The Infiniti Grand Prix of Miami kicked off today with practice on the 1.5-mile Homestead-Miami ...

Infiniti Grand Prix of Miami Kicks Off With Practice
Cheever Fastest Infiniti Driver With Top Ten Speed

Homestead, Fla. (April 6, 2001) -- The Infiniti Grand Prix of Miami kicked off today with practice on the 1.5-mile Homestead-Miami Speedway. Excite@Home driver Eddie Cheever Jr. topped the Infiniti pair, scoring the tenth fastest lap overall in the two practice sessions.

Testing two different car setups, the Cheever Indy Racing crew ran both of the Excite@Home cars in practice today. Cheever posted 37 laps in the primary car, and 22 laps in the backup car. His quick lap of 193.866 mph (27.85 seconds), in his backup car, earned him the tenth fastest speed of the day.

Robbie Buhl drove 60 laps in the No. 24 Team Purex Dreyer & Reinbold Infiniti, battling a strong wind in turns one and two. Pleased with his race setup with the windy and cooler weather conditions, Buhl recorded the 18th fastest lap of the day with a 191.591 mph (28.19 seconds) speed.

The Infiniti Grand Prix of Miami will be televised live on ABC at 2 p.m. (EDT) April 8 and the pre-race show, "Indy Racing 2Day," will air at 10:30 a.m. on ESPN2. ESPN2 will televise pole qualifying at 6:30 p.m. (EDT) April 7. Live timing and scoring reports for practice, qualifying and the race will be available on the Internet at www.indyracing.com.

QUOTES

Eddie Cheever Jr., No. 51 Excite@Home Dallara-Infiniti:

"This is a really important weekend for us because we are very aware of the fact that Infiniti races in the Indy Racing League because the company wants to demonstrate the performance aspect of its new cars. The new 2002 Infiniti Q45 is coming out, and it is definitely one of the best performing cars out there. It has a lot of horsepower - 340hp - and there is obviously a correlation between our Excite@Home Infiniti-powered race car and these new vehicles. We're racing at the Infiniti Grand Prix of Miami, and there's a lot of involvement and excitement, particularly from the dealers in this area. We want them to be proud of the fact that we are right up there at the front of the grid. Everything is coming to a head right about now. It's a very important weekend for us."

Robbie Buhl, No. 24 Team Purex Dreyer & Reinbold Racing GForce-Infiniti:

"I'm happy with the car.  When we tested down here, I wasn't really happy
with how we finished or what we learned.  So, we changed some things we
started with here.  All things considered I'm happy with the car, especially
with the way the wind is blowing over in one and two.  I'm happy with the
way the car feels there.  So that is all good, but what we're focusing on is
a race car.  If we like the car in this wind that is a good thing."

<pre> PRACTICE HIGHLIGHTS

Fastest Speeds of the Day 1. 2 Ray, Greg D/O/F 27.2499 198.166 2. 8 Sharp, Scott D/O/F 27.3086 197.740 3. 4 Hornish Jr, Sam D/O/F 27.3183 197.670 4. 14 Salazar, Eliseo D/O/F 27.3773 197.244 5. 28 Dismore, Mark D/O/F 27.4593 196.655 6. 91 Lazier, Buddy D/O/F 27.6227 195.491 7. 92 Wattles, Stan D/O/F 27.7389 194.672 8. 7 Gregoire, Stephan D/O/F 27.7586 194.534 9. 9 Schroeder, Jeret D/O/F 27.8288 194.044 10. 51T Cheever Jr, Eddie D/I/F 27.8543 193.866 11. 10 McGehee, Robby D/O/F 27.8618 193.814 12. 55 Hattori, Shigeaki D/O/F 27.9589 193.141 13. 15 Fisher, Sarah D/O/F 27.9821 192.981 14. 99 Hamilton, Davey D/O/F 27.9854 192.958 15. 6 Herb, Jon D/O/F 28.0142 192.759 16. 21 Giaffone, Felipe G/O/F 28.0229 192.700 17. 2T Ray, Greg D/O/F 28.1276 191.982 18. 24 Buhl, Robbie G/I/F 28.1851 191.591 19. 98 Boat, Billy D/O/F 28.2048 191.457 20. 3 Unser Jr, Al G/O/F 28.2089 191.429 21. 35 Ward, Jeff G/O/F 28.2247 191.322 22. 51 Cheever Jr, Eddie D/I/F 28.3498 190.478 23. 12 Calkins, Buzz D/O/F 28.4625 189.723 24. 88 Dare, Airton G/O/F 28.5672 189.028 25. 31 Mears, Casey G/O/F 29.1273 185.393 26. 32 Andre, Didier G/O/F 29.4878 183.127 27. 27 Hollansworth Jr, John G/O/F 29.5350 182.834 28. 30 Erwin, Brandon G/O/F 29.5952 182.462 2 49 Key: D - Dallara; F - Firestone; G - G Force; I - Infiniti; O - Oldsmobile.

-Heather Handley

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Eddie Cheever , Robbie Buhl
Teams Dreyer & Reinbold Racing