VISION RACING SETS PACE IN SECOND DAY OF R.O.P.; TOWNSEND BELL MAKES STRONG CASE FOR JPMORGAN CHASE R.O.Y. HONORS SPEEDWAY, Indiana -- Vision Racing and newest team driver, Townsend Bell, in the ...
VISION RACING SETS PACE IN SECOND DAY OF R.O.P.; TOWNSEND BELL MAKES STRONG CASE FOR JPMORGAN CHASE R.O.Y. HONORS
SPEEDWAY, Indiana -- Vision Racing and newest team driver, Townsend Bell, in the #90 Rock & Republic Vision Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone not only got comfortable in the second day of Rookie Orientation Practice for the 90th running of the Indianapolis 500, but set the fastest times of the month so far with a fastest lap of 221.381 mph. After a mechanical problem sidelined Bell in the first day of rookie practice, he made the most of his first laps at speed on the 2.5-mile oval, besting the likes of Indianapolis 500 veterans in Michael Andretti and Al Unser, Jr.
Bell joins Vision Racing for the month of May as the team's third entry in the famed 500-mile race. In addition to welcoming Bell to the team, Vision Racing owners Tony George, wife Laura and actor Patrick Dempsey partnered with Rock & Republic, the new primary sponsor of the #90 machine. Rock & Republic's iconic status has made them a trendsetter in the fashion industry and today, Bell and Vision Racing has made them a pacesetter at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
The pacesetting speed not only bodes well for Bell, who is contending for the JPMorgan Chase Indianapolis 500 Rookie of the Year, but also helps his teammates in Ed Carpenter and Tomas Scheckter who will join Bell on track tomorrow for the start of full-practice for the entire field rack activity continues with full-field practice session from noon to 6:00 p.m. (EDT), tomorrow.
90th Running of the Indianapolis 500 R.O.P. Results (May 8, 2006) and Quotes:
On posting top time for the day:
"Something like this isn't like a race weekend where you are worried about it (posting the top time). I just wanted to make sure the car was solid, that I was comfortable and just ease my way into it. Today it just so happened that I was comfortable in my first outing so I just decided to stick my foot down and find out what it will do. I've had days where the car isn't quite right and I never feel comfortable on an oval and then you have days like today where you get in and it feels good. It's really all based on the combination and today we got it right!"
On experience in IndyCars on ovals:
"Most of the IRL races that I've done are on high-banked ovals. So the steering inputs and all of that are very light and the car kind of arcs itself into the corner. What is really cool about this place (Indianapolis Motor Speedway) is that you really are driving it into the corner and it is nice as a driver because you always want to have more control of the situation, and here you do. It's awfully quick though, and it definitely opens your eyes at first. It takes a commitment to get it all right, but I like that. It's like a really fast road course in some ways. It's certainly the nicest oval I've ever been to and the fastest."
On Vision Racing's competitiveness for the Indianapolis 500:
"The hardest part to get right is to make the car go quick, and with regard to that part, I think the team has gained a lot. Then there are all of the little things that will get you. I know in the last few races I have been watching the progress of Vision and I think they'll get it right. You've got to remember, they only started a year ago and they spent time trying to get all of the chemistry to gel, and I think they are getting there."