IRL: Homestead testing notes 2002-02-18

MIAMI, Monday, Feb. 18, 2002 - 2001 Indy Racing League champion Sam Hornish Jr. and Marlboro Team Penske standout Gil de Ferran turned identical times of 26.72 seconds to lead Indy Racing League testing Feb. 16 at Homestead-Miami...

MIAMI, Monday, Feb. 18, 2002 - 2001 Indy Racing League champion Sam Hornish Jr. and Marlboro Team Penske standout Gil de Ferran turned identical times of 26.72 seconds to lead Indy Racing League testing Feb. 16 at Homestead-Miami Speedway.

Hornish will try to defend his race title in the No. 4 Pennzoil Panther Dallara/Chevrolet/Firestone on Saturday, March 2 during the season-opening 20th Anniversary Grand Prix of Miami. It appears that de Ferran could provide some of Hornish's sternest competition on the 1.5-mile oval.

Nine Indy Racing drivers tested until nearly dusk Saturday during the track's Open House, as rain forced a four-hour delay in the start of testing.

"It was pretty windy," Hornish said. "We were just making sure that the car was underneath me all day. This track has similarities to Indianapolis."

de Ferran's top time in his No. 6 Marlboro Team Penske Dallara/Chevrolet/Firestone was better than his quickest lap during testing Friday, 27.03.

"Today was a bit frustrating but only because obviously we started late," Penske Racing President Tim Cindric said. "Throughout the day, the winds changed, and we found it a bit unproductive with the change of conditions with what we were trying to accomplish."

On Friday, 1998 Indianapolis 500 winner Eddie Cheever Jr. turned a top lap of 26.81 seconds in his #51 Red Bull Cheever Racing Dallara/Infiniti/Firestone. He returned Saturday with a top lap of 28.00 seconds, while test driver Tomas Scheckter posted a quick lap of 27.53 that day.

"We're just trying to figure out the car setups," Cheever said. "The two-car team thing is doing very well. We're getting a lot of good information." <pre> TOP TESTING TIMES, Saturday, Feb. 16

No.     Driver                  Team    Time
 4      Sam Hornish Jr.         Pennzoil Panther Racing                 26.72 seconds
 6      Gil de Ferran           Marlboro Team Penske                    26.72
24      Robbie Buhl             Team Purex Dreyer& Reinbold Racing      27.28
34      Laurent Redon           Mi-Jack/Conquest Racing                 27.40
52      Tomas Scheckter         Red Bull Cheever Racing                 27.53
 8      Scott Sharp             Kelley Racing                           27.69
51      Eddie Cheever Jr.       Red Bull Cheever Racing                 28.00
91      Buddy Lazier            Hemelgarn Racing                        28.06
 7      Greg Ray                Kelley Racing                           28.22

-irl-

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Tomas Scheckter , Greg Ray , Eddie Cheever , Robbie Buhl , Buddy Lazier , Scott Sharp , Gil de Ferran , Laurent Redon , Sam Hornish Jr.
Teams Panther Racing , Team Penske , Conquest Racing , Team Penske