TEAMMATES SHARP, DISMORE FASTEST IN OPENING PRACTICE Bliss wins pole for USAC Coors Lights Silver Bullet Series 50 LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla., Jan. 22, 1999 - Kelley Racing teammates Scott Sharp and Mark Dismore were first- and...
TEAMMATES SHARP, DISMORE FASTEST IN OPENING PRACTICE Bliss wins pole for USAC Coors Lights Silver Bullet Series 50
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla., Jan. 22, 1999 - Kelley Racing teammates Scott Sharp and Mark Dismore were first- and second-fastest in practice Friday, respectively, for the Pep Boys Indy Racing League's season-opening TransWorld Diversified Services Indy 200 at Walt Disney World Speedway. Sharp posted a time and speed of 21.160 seconds, 170.132 mph in the Delphi Automotive Systems Dallara/Aurora/Goodyear on the 1-mile tri-oval, faster than the official track record of 166.013 set by Tony Stewart in qualifying for the 1997 Indy 200. "The car ran great," said Sharp, from Carmel, Ind. "I love this track. You can really hold the car down and hustle the car around. We're excited for the race." The 200-lap, 200-mile race starts at 1 p.m. (EST) Sunday. PPG Pole qualifying starts at 12:30 p.m. Saturday. The USAC Coors Light Silver Bullet Series 50 starts at 2:30 p.m. Dismore, from Greenfield, Ind., was pleased with his fastest lap of 168.587 in the MCI WorldCom Dallara/Aurora/Goodyear. But he's searching for more speed. "Not fast enough," he said. "We're just trying to be conservative on the practice runs. Ninety percent of the session went good. We're working on our race setup. If we have a good qualifying run, we'll be happy. The car seems consistent, and we're here to race." Scott Goodyear was third fastest at 168.445 in the Pennzoil Panther G Force/Aurora/Goodyear. Greg Ray was fourth in the Glidden Menard Dallara/Aurora/Firestone at 167.747. Sam Schmidt, in his first official practice driving as Arie Luyendyk's replacement for Treadway Racing, was fifth with a fast lap of 167.496. Mike Bliss, from Milwaukie, Ore., set a USAC Coors Light Silver Bullet Series track record in qualifying for the Coors Light Silver Bullet 50 with a time and speed of 26.637 seconds, 135.150 mph. Bliss is driving a True Value-sponsored car co-owned by four time Indianapolis 500 winner A.J. Foyt. The previous track record was 130.771, set by Kenny Irwin in 1998. The top 11 qualifiers Friday were faster than Irwin's track record. "We ran softer tires," Bliss said. "We knew we would be a lot faster. This place is hard to get a grip. It's really tough to find a good setup on this track because there's no real corner to set up for. You just go for a happy medium." Pep Boys Indy Racing League veteran Dave Steele was second in USAC qualifying at 134.373, followed by teammate Irwin at 133.819. Robby Flock qualified fourth and Russ Gamester fifth. Jason Leffler, making his Pep Boys Indy Racing League debut Sunday for Treadway Racing, qualified 10th for the Silver Bullet 50. Leffler and Brian Tyler are the only drivers pulling "double duty" this weekend, competing in both the USAC and Pep Boys Indy Racing League events.
TRANSWORLD DIVERSIFIED SERVICES INDY 200 NOTEBOOK
On the air: ABC will televise the TransWorld Diversified Services Indy 200 live at 1 p.m. (EST) Jan. 24. SpeedVision will televise PPG Pole qualifying live at noon Jan. 23. The IMS Radio Network will broadcast the race live at 1 p.m. Jan. 24, with a prerace show starting at 12:30 p.m. A qualifying highlights show will be broadcast on the IMS Radio Network at 4:30 p.m. Jan. 23. Tickets: Tickets for the TransWorld Diversified Services Indy 200 are available by calling (407) 939-6693.