Honda Drivers Lead Final IRL Pre-Season Test Honda-powered drivers claimed the top three positions -- and six of the top seven spots -- in two days of pre-season Indy Racing League testing this week at Phoenix International Raceway. ...
Honda Drivers Lead Final IRL Pre-Season Test
Honda-powered drivers claimed the top three positions -- and six of the top seven spots -- in two days of pre-season Indy Racing League testing this week at Phoenix International Raceway. It was the final IndyCar Series test prior to the start of 2005 season next month at Homestead-Miami Speedway.
Dario Franchitti led two of his Andretti Green Racing teammates, Dan Wheldon and defending series champion Tony Kanaan, at the top of the combined time sheets. Veteran Scott Sharp continued his run of strong pre-season showings for Delphi Fernandez Racing with the fifth-quickest speed of the test, followed by Bryan Herta in the final Andretti Green Racing entry.
Defending Indy 500 champion Buddy Rice in the quickest of three Rahal Letterman Racing entries in seventh, with Roger Yasukawa leading the single-car Dreyer & Reinbold team to 11th overall. The 17-race IndyCar season starts March 6 at Homestead, with the first street-circuit event in series history taking place April 3 at the Honda Grand Prix of St. Petersburg on the west coast of Florida.
Dario Franchitti (#27 ArcaEx Andretti Green Racing Honda) Fastest practice: "The [fastest] posted speed is just an indicator of our qualifying set-up, and that's obviously good! But we had a long list of things to test here, and simulated qualifying runs were only one of those items. But I got to do a couple of race simulations as well over the course of the test. There's still a bit of work to do before the season starts, but I'm very pleased with the progress we've made so far. Once again, Honda's done a great job in the off-season. They've continued to work hard and improve the engine, and we've seen considerable progress since the end of last year."