IRL: Kansas: AGR/Wheldon Friday report

WHELDON TENTH IN KANSAS PRACTICE KANSAS CITY, Kan. (July 4, 2003) -- Rookie Dan Wheldon set the tenth fastest speed in practice today at the Kansas Speedway in preparation for the Kansas Indy 300 on Sunday. Wheldon lapped the 1.5-mile oval in...

WHELDON TENTH IN KANSAS PRACTICE

KANSAS CITY, Kan. (July 4, 2003) -- Rookie Dan Wheldon set the tenth fastest speed in practice today at the Kansas Speedway in preparation for the Kansas Indy 300 on Sunday. Wheldon lapped the 1.5-mile oval in the #26 Klein Tools/Jim Beam Dallara/Honda/Firestone at 216.107 miles per hour.

Wheldon and the Klein Tools/Jim Beam crew concentrated of the car's handling in heavy traffic, trying to run with other groups of cars. The team's focus was the car's race balance, which they improved greatly late in the afternoon session. The team will continue to work on the race setup tomorrow, but will also run a couple of qualifying simulations during the morning practice.

Tomas Scheckter was the quickest in today's practice sessions, logging a best lap at 218.264 miles per hour (25.0706 seconds). He was followed by his teammate Scott Dixon -- who has led the last 289 competitive race laps -- at 217.739 miles per hour. Wheldon's teammate Tony Kanaan rounded out the top three with a speed of 217.661 miles per hour. Bryan Herta posted the ninth fastest speed at 216.107 miles per hour.

Dan Wheldon #26 Klein Tools/Jim Beam Dallara/Honda/Firestone

"The Klein Tools/Jim Beam car is really pretty good. You need to be good in race conditions and that is what we worked on today. This is one of the best cars I've had this season. Michael (Andretti) has helped and working with (race engineer) Eddie [Jones] and (team manager) Tony [Cotman] -- we are starting to work really well together. We'll change our focus a little tomorrow morning for qualifying because we want to be starting right up there, not way in the back."

Tony Cotman Klein Tools/Jim Beam Team Manager

"I think we have a pretty comfortable car for Dan. All we did today was work on our race setup and we found a few things in the last session that should help us a lot for the race. Tomorrow we'll do a couple things for qualifying, but our main focus is the race on Sunday."

-AGR-

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Series IndyCar
Drivers Tomas Scheckter , Scott Dixon , Tony Kanaan , Bryan Herta , Dan Wheldon , Jim Beam