RICHMOND, Va., Friday, June 29, 2001 - Kelley Racing drivers Scott Sharp and Mark Dismore will start 10th and 13th, respectively, for tomorrow night's SunTrust Indy Challenge at Richmond International Raceway. Dismore qualified first of the two...
RICHMOND, Va., Friday, June 29, 2001 - Kelley Racing drivers Scott Sharp and Mark Dismore will start 10th and 13th, respectively, for tomorrow night's SunTrust Indy Challenge at Richmond International Raceway.
Dismore qualified first of the two drivers with a speed of 155.196 mph (17.3973 seconds) around the ¾-mile D-shaped oval. The #28 Delphi Automotive Systems/Bryant Heating & Cooling was the fifth car on the track following a practice session by the USAC Silver Bullet Series.
"I have more race car under me than what I used," said Dismore. "The further back in the qualifying line you are today, the better. If you're at the back and have a decent car, the chances are you'll be the quickest today because the cars in front of you are cleaning a lot of rubber off the track. I really wanted to wave off and go to the back of the line and just get one timed lap, but we were afraid that if there was another accident to clean up that time would run out and we'd have to start at the back of the line. I felt like we just needed to get a time and get into the show for the race. So we decided the best thing to do was take what we could get and then set the car up good for the race tomorrow. I felt like we had a car that could' ve been on the pole in the right circumstances, but these weren't the right circumstances."
Dismore is currently 17th in the Driver Points Championship and will start his #28 Delphi/Bryant car on the inside of Row 7. He's looking for his first win of the season on the shortest track on the Indy Racing Northern Light Series schedule.
"We'll go out in our final practice tomorrow and make sure the car's hooked up and then go out and have a good race," said Dismore. "Hopefully we can get the car setup and have one as good as I think we're capable of having. These cars are very sensitive to adjustments, track conditions, weather, and everything. It's going to be an interesting race tomorrow."
Dismore's teammate Scott Sharp will start in the Top-10 for the sixth time this season. Sharp put his #8 Delphi Automotive Systems Indy Racing car outside the fifth row in the 10th starting position with a speed of 156.663 mph (17.2345 seconds).
"I was pretty happy with our lap. I think that's about all it had," said Sharp. "This (track) is a whole new element. It's the most handling and sensitive track on our schedule. The rubber from the other cars today certainly threw everybody for a curve. The Firestones (tires) are great, it' s just the conditions of the track keep changing and you have to dial around that."
Sharp is currently 3rd in the Driver Points Championship and feels that many teams are going to be guessing on race setup for tomorrow's race. "Our final practice is at 3 p.m. tomorrow afternoon and those conditions aren't going to be any indication of what we'll face in the race tomorrow night," said Sharp. "We saw that yesterday when we had 150-degree track temp in the middle of the afternoon and by our evening practice session it had dropped to 110. That's a huge difference when you're talking about the longevity and the performance of the car. It'll all be a little bit of a gamble going into the race. We've been chasing the track a little bit like a lot of people have. It's constantly changing. You feel like you're at a craps table in Vegas every time you go out there. We'll be very thankful for the cooler temperatures tomorrow night."
The SunTrust Indy Challenge will be broadcast live on ESPN and the IMS Radio Network at 8 p.m. EDT Saturday, June 30.