FOUNTAIN, Colo., Aug. 15, 1998 - He might be on crutches, but Billy Boat didn't miss a step Saturday while winning the pole for the Radisson 200 with a track-record speed of 178.571 mph on the 1-mile oval at Pikes Peak International ...
FOUNTAIN, Colo., Aug. 15, 1998 - He might be on crutches, but Billy Boat didn't miss a step Saturday while winning the pole for the Radisson 200 with a track-record speed of 178.571 mph on the 1-mile oval at Pikes Peak International Raceway.
Boat, from Phoenix, earned his third PPG Pole of the season. This is his first race since suffering a broken left leg and a fractured pelvis in an accident during the New England 200 on June 28 at Loudon, N.H. His last pole came at Loudon, the day before he was hurt.
"I probably feel the best when I'm out there driving," Boat said. "Any injury you have, you just put it completely out of your head and concentrate on racing and driving. I'll probably be sore Sunday. It hurts less the faster you go."
The second annual Radisson 200 starts at 2 p.m. (MDT). The 200-lap event is the eighth of 11 Pep Boys Indy Racing League races this season.
Boat earned the pole in his backup Conseco Dallara/Aurora/Goodyear owned by four-time Indianapolis 500 winner A.J. Foyt, breaking the track record of 176.117 set by Scott Sharp during qualifying for this event in June 1997. The top six drivers during qualifying broke Sharp's record.
"Yesterday, I saw that we were a half to three-quarters of a second slow," Foyt said. "I made a decision right there, and I said, 'Look, let's get our backup cars.' We've got them prepared. I had a pretty good combination last year. The setup was on them."
Jeff Ward was the No. 2 qualifier at 178.218 in the ISM Racing-Superflo-Prolong G Force/Aurora/Goodyear. Tony Stewart was third at 177.874 in the Glidden-Menards-Special Dallara/Aurora/Firestone.
Mark Dismore, fastest during Friday's practice at 178.386, slipped to 176.991 in the Kelley Automotive Dallara/Aurora/Goodyear during qualifying and will start fourth.
Points leader Scott Sharp will start eighth after turning a fast lap of 175.927 in the Delphi Automotive Systems Dallara/Aurora/Goodyear.
Roberto Guerrero qualified 10th in his debut with CBR Racing, recording a top speed of 175.038 in the CBR G Force/Infiniti/Firestone. It tied the best qualifying performance by a Nissan Infiniti engine in Indy Racing League history, as Guerrero also started 10th at the 1997 Phoenix 200 with Infiniti power.
Dr. Jack Miller suffered a bruised ankle when he did a half-spin in Turn 4 and hit the outside retaining wall during the morning practice. Miller's Crest Racing Dallara/Infiniti/Firestone suffered heavy left-side damage, and he will start from the rear of the 25-car race field in his backup car.