VETERAN GIAFFONE BUMPS WAY INTO INDIANAPOLIS 500 INDIANAPOLIS, Sunday, May 22, 2005 -- IRL IndyCarÂ® Series veteran Felipe Giaffone bumped his way into the 89th Indianapolis 500 only a few hours after signing to drive for four-time Indianapolis...
VETERAN GIAFFONE BUMPS WAY INTO INDIANAPOLIS 500
INDIANAPOLIS, Sunday, May 22, 2005 -- IRL IndyCar® Series veteran Felipe Giaffone bumped his way into the 89th Indianapolis 500 only a few hours after signing to drive for four-time Indianapolis 500 winner A.J. Foyt on Bump Day.
Giaffone, the 2001 IndyCar Series Bombardier Rookie of the Year, recorded a four-lap average qualifying speed of 217.645 mph in the No. 48 A.J. Foyt Racing Panoz/Toyota/Firestone to bump rookie Arie Luyendyk Jr. from the 33-car field.
"I was trying to change my line because the wind was blowing a little bit toward Turn 2, and once I got a little bit of push coming in and then the steering got a little loose coming out, so it's just working with my line because usually I have so much time, so I was just trying to forget the lap time for that one and just work with my line to pick the best one for qualifying," he said. "What I knew should be OK for qualifying and finally, for qualifying was the first time I was flat all the way around."
Giaffone had little time to prepare. He was shopping for clothes for his infant son when the call came.
"I can tell you that I didn't know that this really could happen," he said. "I've never be in this situation before, I'm either out or I'm in. After last night I thought that was it. 'I'm out, there's no chance,' even when there was a few guys that said we could do it and that was Friday and I was like: 'How are we going to do it? It's tomorrow.' Even though I was pushing for it to happen, I was pushing but just because that's my job. To push to try to get a run, but it's really weird. But this is Indianapolis, and these things happen. In a certain way, it's not the best setting because I was really nervous getting to the car, just wondering how things were going to go and at the same time, it feels very good because you're in the car. It's going to be a day that I'll remember forever."
Luyendyk, who completed the Rookie Orientation Program on May 21, became the 33rd qualifier with an average speed of 215.039 mph in the Beck Motorsports-prepared No. 98 Fat Wallet.com/CURB Records Dallara/Chevrolet/Firestone. His attempt to bump Giaffone was unsuccessful.
"I'm just really disappointed, obviously," said Luyendyk, the son of two-time Indianapolis 500 winner Arie Luyendyk. "After feeling like you are in the field, and then being bumped out, it's probably the hardest way to go. I am happy with what I did. I tried to give it everything that I got, and that's only going to walk away with this feeling because I tried as hard as I could."
The 10th season of IndyCar Series competition continues with the 89th running of the Indianapolis 500 on May 29 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The race will be telecast by ABC at 1 p.m. (EDT) and broadcast by the IMS Radio Network. The race also will be available on XM Satellite Radio channel 152 "XM Extreme." The next Menards Infiniti Pro Series race is the Futaba Freedom 100 on May 27 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The race will be telecast by ESPN2 at 2 p.m. (EDT) on May 27.