IRL: Indy 500: McGehee Bump day report

McGehee Qualifies for Indy 500 on Bump Day INDIANAPOLIS, May 24 - Yesterday Robby McGehee qualified for the Indy 500 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in the 33rd and last spot with a qualifying speed of 211.631 mph, but the St. Louis driver ...

McGehee Qualifies for Indy 500 on Bump Day

INDIANAPOLIS, May 24 - Yesterday Robby McGehee qualified for the Indy 500 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in the 33rd and last spot with a qualifying speed of 211.631 mph, but the St. Louis driver feels confident that he can still have a good finish in Sunday's Indy 500 in the Natoli Engineering-sponsored PDM Racing Dallara Chevrolet.

"We know we could have gone faster yesterday, but with the threat of rain in the forecast we had to put it in line and put it in the show," he said Monday night. "We only have 50 laps on the car in total so far. We plan to find a few more miles per hour on Thursday to get to a competitive race pace."

The pressure is still on McGehee and PDM because only two hours of practice remain before Sunday's race. The track will be open for practice from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Thursday, Miller Lite Carb Day. The 500 Festival Community Day is Wednesday from 11 a.m. until 6 p.m., but no practicing will be done that day.

Sunday's Bump Day activities were stressful for a variety of reasons. Lack of practice time and rain were two big ones. "We've only made one change on the car so far," McGehee said of the set-up process that other teams have literally spent weeks working on. "With the threat of rain, we just had to get me comfortable in the car and get it in the show.

"We want to run as much as possible on Carb Day," he added. "The PDM team knows what it takes and so do I, and I'm confident we'll be in good shape on Sunday. This deal came together late, but it's a long race and you can still have a good finish even if you start in the last row. There is only one Indy 500, and just being in the field is an honor. We have a lot of talented people on our team, and I really think that with a little bit of good luck, we can have a good run on Sunday."

Sunday's Indy 500 will mark McGehee's fourth start in the world's greatest auto race, the largest single-day sporting event in the world. His best finish to date is fifth in 1999.

For more information, see www.robbymcgehee.com and www.restartcommunications.com.

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Series IndyCar
Drivers Robby McGehee