IRL: Kentucky: Honda qualifying report

Ray leads Honda qualifiers with fifth-place run Greg Ray led all Honda-powered qualifiers in dramatic fashion at Kentucky Speedway and will start Sunday's Belterra Casino Indy 300 from the inside of the third row in his Access Motorsports Honda,...

Ray leads Honda qualifiers with fifth-place run

Greg Ray led all Honda-powered qualifiers in dramatic fashion at Kentucky Speedway and will start Sunday's Belterra Casino Indy 300 from the inside of the third row in his Access Motorsports Honda, despite waving off his first qualifying attempt.

Sensing a handling problem during his warm-up laps, Ray "waved off" his qualifying run prior to taking the green flag. Returning to the garage area, the Access team found a problem with a tire valve stem and changed wheels, rejoining at the end of the qualifying line. Under Indy Racing League rules, a driver making a second qualifying attempt is allowed only one timed lap, instead of the usual two laps. But Ray made the most of his second chance, posting an average speed just one mile an hour slower than pole qualifier Sam Hornish, Jr.

IRL points leader Tony Kanaan then led an almost solid block of Honda entries, qualifying 11th for Andretti Green Racing. Teammates Bryan Herta and Dan Wheldon will line up 13th and 14th, followed by Team Rahal's Kenny Brack and rookie points leader Roger Yasukawa for Super Aguri Fernandez Racing. Sunday's 300-mile race starts at 2 p.m. EDT, with live coverage on ABC television and the Indy Racing Radio Network.

Greg Ray (#13 Trim Spa/EDS Access Motorsports Honda) Qualified 5th:

"It was more than a little exciting. There was a problem with a valve stem and instead of building up to the proper [tire] pressure, it was losing air. The car got real loose and I was very, very lucky not to crash on my second warm-up lap so we waved off the run. The team found the problem, put on a new set of Firestones and went back out to the [qualifying] line. I was probably too conservative on my second run, but you only get one timed lap after a wave-off and I had to be careful. I'm pretty pleased overall. We're showing that a small team can accomplish a lot in this series."

-hr-

Be part of something big

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Greg Ray , Tony Kanaan , Kenny Brack , Dan Wheldon , Roger Yasukawa , Sam Hornis