Darren Manning: No. 14 ABC Supply Dallara/Honda/Firestone * On Testing at Sebring: The ABC Supply team tested at Sebring on Tuesday along with several other teams that were also working with new drivers this year. The team was pleased with...
Darren Manning: No. 14 ABC Supply Dallara/Honda/Firestone
* On Testing at Sebring: The ABC Supply team tested at Sebring on Tuesday along with several other teams that were also working with new drivers this year. The team was pleased with the results. Manning said, "The testing went really well. Firstly, because we were fast of the eight cars that were there--it was a good start.
"We definitely learned a lot about the car and how I like it. The changes we made --going backwards and forwards, making it better or worse-- but learning all the time, it was good. We were able to get everything good on the car that I like--we've got a really good car for St. Petersburg. Sebring is slow and bumpy and has higher grip than St. Pete but it's still relevant. I'm pretty happy--we still had a set of tires left so we didn't get the absolute best out of the time but we were still fastest.
"I said before I was looking for a win but now it seems more realistic, the more we run. The team's gelling more and more --me, Len [Paskus, team engineer] and A.J.--we are understanding each other a lot more on the engineering side. They are understanding a lot more what I like on the car and they're understanding the quantities or degrees of what I'm talking about compared to what they think I'm talking about."
* Manning on St. Pete: "The street courses have no margin for error. Hopefully, my experience on the street courses will help out. Unlike the road courses where you can horse a car around, on the street courses you must be very precise--know how to drive the cambers, bumps and manhole covers. It suits my style of driving."
* Manning has competed at St. Pete twice. His first time on the street course was in 2003 driving for Walker Racing in the CART Series where he started 11th and had climbed to sixth. Midway through the race he lost the clutch on a pitstop and was finished for the day, placing 13th. In 2004, he drove for Ganassi Racing, where he was third quickest in practice sessions, but a sticky throttle hampered him in qualifying so he started 16th. In the race, he climbed to second and then on his final stop, he took fuel only allowing him to lead three laps. He was running second when Tony Kanaan made contact with Manning, dropping him to eighth. He ran out of fuel on the final lap and finished ninth.
* Last race: At Homestead, Manning started 15th and was up to 11th when he was lapping a slower car and slid into the marbles. Losing traction, he brushed the wall with the right rear and damaged the suspension, ending his night. He was credited with 13th place.
* The Honda Indy Grand Prix of St. Petersburg will be televised live on ESPN Sunday afternoon starting at 2:30pm.