WEDNESDAY, JUNE 4 PDM Racing announced this morning that it had acquired a Dallara chassis from Blueprint Racing for driver Tyce Carlson to run in the True Value 500. The team's primary Dallara/Aurora was heavily damaged in an accident...
WEDNESDAY, JUNE 4
PDM Racing announced this morning that it had acquired a Dallara chassis from Blueprint Racing for driver Tyce Carlson to run in the True Value 500. The team's primary Dallara/Aurora was heavily damaged in an accident Tuesday night and can't be repaired in time. Carlson will not take part in tonight's qualifying because the team will not have the car, one of Blueprint's backups, prepared in time. The car will carry the No. 18 and be called the Klipsch Overhead Door Jacuzzi Earl's Performance V-Line machine. "We are so pleased to have made arrangements with Blueprint for the utilization of one of their Dallara chassis," said Paul Diatlovich, co-owner of PDM. "In this day and age of motorsports, it's very satisfying and rewarding that people help each other on the spur of the moment." *** 4 p.m. medical update: Mike Groff suffered a puncture wound to his lower left leg and a fracture to his lower left tibia Tuesday night during a practice session at Texas Motor Speedway. He was admitted to Harris Methodist Hospital Tuesday night and the puncture wound was cleaned. Groff was released this afternoon from Harris Methodist and was flown to Indianapolis, where he will be admitted to Methodist Hospital for further evaluation. Toni Honsowetz, public relations representative for the Jonathan Byrd Cunningham Racing team, said Groff was in good spirits. *** IRL Practice Notes: 5:01 p.m. GREEN. #2 Stewart first out. 5:05 p.m. #2 Stewart turned a lap at 217.628 miles an hour, fastest of the week. 5:07 p.m. #91 Lazier turned a lap at 212.640, second fastest of session. 5:21 p.m. #1 Boat turned a lap at 212.481, third fastest of session. #1 Boat turned a lap at 212.942, second fastest of session. 5:30 p.m. YELLOW, track inspection. 5:35 p.m. Track temperature from Firestone tire engineers is 123 degrees and ambient temperature is 93 degrees. 5:42 p.m. GREEN. 5:44 p.m. #34 Zampedri makes first appearance on track, the 23rd car of the session. 5:45 p.m. #4 Brack turned a lap at 213.997, second fastest of session. 5:52 p.m. YELLOW, tow-in, #34 Zampedri, oil alarm came on, so Zampedri shut down. 5:55 p.m. GREEN. 5:59 p.m. #6 Goodyear turned a lap at 214.831, second fastest of session. 6 p.m. END OF SESSION. Allen May completed the fourth phase of his IRL driver's test and is cleared to attempt qualification.
KENNY BRACK: "The car (was) good. We're trying to find more speed. The car is where we want it to be. We are still wanting more speed." TONY STEWART: "I just went out and made my run. I didn't know I went that fast. The track may change a little bit. Clouds are coming in and it may be a little cooler." SCOTT GOODYEAR: "We're still working on the optimum setup because the car was changed since yesterday. The track apron is very dusty and concerns me...however, everybody has to deal with it."
BUZZ CALKINS: "We made a major improvement that session. It was like starting over as we lacked a baseline after running so few laps last night. In fact, the car felt so much better that I wished we had more practice before qualifying." *** Update on Mike Groff from Toni Honsowetz, Jonathan Byrd-Cunningham Racing: Groff arrived at Methodist Hospital in Indianapolis at approximately 6:30 p.m. After review of the X-rays taken at Harris Methodist Hospital in Fort Worth, it was determined that he will undergo surgery Thursday morning to repair the spiral fracture in his left tibia. Three small screws will be inserted and he is expected to be walking on it within five to six weeks. It is felt he may be able to drive sooner. Next update will be after surgery. *** Track temperature at 7:28 p.m. from Goodyear tire engineers was 98 degrees. *** TRUE VALUE 500 QUALIFYING CHRONOLOGY: Time Car Driver 1st Lap 2nd Lap 3rd Lap Pit Total Rank of Day No. 7:34 21 Guerrero 204.600 204.739 101.500 17.6 152.873 1 7:40 17 Giaffone 206.414 206.746 100.411 19.4 152.745 2 MARK STAINBROOK (chief mechanic, right front, #17 Giaffone): "I don't know what our time is but I think it was great. I think it was a great format and I hope they do it at other tracks." 7:44 3 Buhl 209.807 211.640 unavailable from USAC 7:48 12 Calkins 204.623 205.206 109.500 14.4 158.792 1 7:53 5 Luyendyk 209.538 208.639 107.211 17.8 158.791 2 7:56 1 Boat took green, slowed on course first lap BILLY BOAT: "I went to grab fourth gear and it broke the linkage. It shouldn't be any problem to get it fired and back in line." 8 p.m. 91 Lazier 210.789 210.625 115.540 13.5 165.318 1 (right rear tire rolled under and broke wing plate when Lazier left pit) 8:04 6 Goodyear 208.446 211.135 116.064 13.6 165.293 2 8:09 7 Salazar 210.313 to pits on second lap, run incomplete 8:13 51 Cheever Jr. 203.076 205.871 113.854 13.2 161.606 3 8:17 40 Miller 185.370 191.238 105.442 17.2 149.197 8 8:22 14 Hamilton 211.441 211.516 106.400 18.2 159.103 4 8:27 97 Ray 209.375 209.741 unavailable from USAC 8:32 22 Greco 207.804 208.092 107.409 16.6 158.496 7 8:35 2 Stewart 216.251 216.494 114.857 12.9 167.133 1 8:39 4 Brack 211.773 211.590 115.195 14.3 165.480 2 8:44 8 Sospiri 196.815 197.073 102.975 19.9 151.010 12 8:49 44 May 202.962 203.176 97.977 20.6 149.586 13 8:54 30 R. Groff 208.849 208.881 101.804 19.8 154,652 10 8:57 27 Guthrie 208.680 209.489 110.274 15.4 160.997 6 9:01 28 Dismore 207.509 210.600 100.692 20.7 153.856 12 9:05 1 Boat 210.280 212.039 overshot pit, incomplete run 9:22 16 Schmidt 190.880 196.987 82.988 29.4 134.136 18 Field average for 18 cars: 156.206. Twenty-three presentations were made.
POST-QUALIFYING CREW QUOTES:
CLARK DRAKE (right rear, #6 Goodyear): "Good, I was really happy. I was concentrating on not making a mistake. I kept thinking to myself, Don't make a mistake.' Mistakes will cost you here. I think it was good."
JEFF SINDEN (right front, #40 Miller): "He overshot his pit a little bit but it all went well. I think it's entertaining for the crowd. He had a little trouble with handling at first but he got used to it. I'm just glad to be down here in Texas with all the great fans."
TIM KELLY (air jack, #22 Greco): "It was a 13-second stop. We had fun for the most part. This makes it a lot more even for the guys who can change tires and it's great for the fans."
SCOTT MARKS (right rear, #2 Stewart, about being on the pole): "Pretty interesting. It's the first time we ever did it." (In reference to Galles team winning Indy pit stop competition): "That's cool. For some reason we didn't get in the pit stop competition at Indy. I think we would have had a good chance at it. But it feels great to do it here." (On fans' view): "I think the fans loved it. I know I did."
DON SKINNER (right front, #2 Stewart): "Tony did all the work by just being that much faster on the track. It really was not one of our best pit stops but Tony's speed pushed us up to the pole position."
GARY ARMENTROUT (crew chief, right front, #4 Brack): "It felt good. I set the tire out a little too far and had to reach a little bit, but it went great."
PAUL HENNESSEY (right rear, #4 Brack): (comparing the competition to winning Indy pit stop competition): "This basically means a lot more to racing as compared to Indy, which is more for the crowd. Right now, we're second and it feels great."
JOHN KING (crew chief, right front, #14 Hamilton): "It's fun but it doesn't show the speed of the car or the driver's skill. We can spend two or three seconds in the pit and that really can cost. It was fun to do. His actual speed time and pit time should be separated."
POST-QUALIFYING DRIVER QUOTES:
ROBERTO GUERRERO: "The car was very comfortable, working very well right now. The track is very bumpy but very exciting. I was running wide open with eyes closed. The car needed more power. Hopefully, it will get better by Saturday."
ROBBIE BUHL: "I beg to differ with it. I don't think I was going over the speed limit. The crew has done a great job. It's a tough deal."
BUZZ CALKINS: "The car didn't feel too bad. It's the whole package here that really counts. We could have done a little better. " (format): "The format is a good idea. It offered something for the fans and teams. The track is fun in some ways and not fun in other ways. It's a great big fishbowl."
BUDDY LAZIER: "You have to build momentum. I could've built more coming in. I feel like I could have gotten more. I feel like the guys did a good job, though. But I felt like I left something out on the race track." (About the pit stall): "You don't know how deep you can go, unfortunately, the first time."
EDDIE CHEEVER JR.: "This is a team sport. I have some really good mechanics. I'm very fortunate. My tire temperature wasn't up. The crew did a remarkable job changing tires. They always wonder why I don't use a drink bottle when I pit and it's because I don't have the time. The mechanics are part of the qualifying now. You win or lose many races in the pits."
ROBBIE GROFF: "It's all about teamwork, which is exactly what Indy racing is all about." (Format): "Once in awhile is fine. It's a good show for the fans."
JIM GUTHRIE: "Not bad for 32 laps (of practice) on an engine we never saw before, huh?" (About the track): "It's a lot of fun, but it was different." (About problems): "They keep raising the bar for us all the time. We're definitely not the fastest car on the track." (About the lights): "The track is more evenly lit at night than during the day."
GREG RAY: "IRL said I was too fast in the pit lane but I looked at the speedometer and it was 120 miles an hour and it was very frustrating."
AFFONSO GIAFFONE: "We ran slower this morning. This is basically the best that the car can do. I had a very hard time freeing the car up in Turn 1."
ARIE LUYENDYK: "When I came into the pits, we had a right front tire change problem. We changed a motor because the other one was down on power, but so was this one by four miles an hour. Hopefully, we'll make another motor change for the race. I couldn't hear on the radio and lost count on the laps."
SCOTT GOODYEAR: "The car worked very well and the pit stop was fantastic. I am not so sure that getting through the apron in (Turns) 3 and 4 was as good as it should be and it cost us some time. My crew did a great job although the pit-stop format I do not care for. But it is entertainment for the fans. It's like going through a fast-food drive-up window. Sometimes you get the wrong order."
DAVEY HAMILTON: "It wasn't very good. I had decent laps on the track. Coming into the pits, the rear brakes grabbed and that slowed me down. One of the air guns didn't work. It was just a big mess. The car has felt great all week. It got a little loose once during the run. We were lucky to get what we did. The track's got its characteristics. It's like driving a sprint car at Winchester. I don't lay awake anymore worrying about Indy-car racing. I laid awake last night worrying about the format."
DR. JACK MILLER: "We crashed yesterday and we had so much work to do before practice today. We could not find the balance. The car is still not right." (About qualifying): "Qualifying is awesome. This is show business. You never hear fans cheer during qualifying. This is fantastic."
ALLEN MAY: "We've only got about 100 miles on this car. This is the first time I've had to slow down that fast and I screwed up. We'll be ready for Saturday."
ELISEO SALAZAR: "I saw the green flag fly twice and I got confused. I think the format is good, it was my fault."
MARCO GRECO: "The car did very well. We only ran three laps today. I think we have a good setup for the race. The engine we used had more than 600 miles on it already."
TONY STEWART: "I ran the two laps flat-out. When they unloaded the car, it was fast right out of the box. I'm not in favor of the format. We set these things, set 'em up on the ragged edge. If you have something like an air gun jam, it's just not fair."
KENNY BRACK: "I was flat-out from the first lap on. The hardest part is to get into the pits right. The pit stop is so tough."
VINCENZO SOSPIRI: "We lost a lot of horsepower. Our turn speed was down. The engine has been doing fine but something happened now."
BILLY BOAT (after second attempt): "I thought I knew where the pit was. We had been pitting down at the end all day. It was just my fault."
SAM SCHMIDT: "We were behind the eight-ball all along. We only ran 37 laps total in two days. Tomorrow can only get better."
MARK DISMORE: "The car was real good. I haven't been out on stickers at night. So I was a little tentative on my first lap. On the second lap, I was flat out all the way around. This is a great race car. It can run high and low." (On the pit stop): "I was hauling through the apron coming into the pits. I almost didn't get it stopped."
POST-QUALIFYING PRESS CONFERENCE QUOTES:
KENNY BRACK: "I had a good run. We did the pit stop with no big problems. It's a great track. I feel comfortable. I've never been on a track with so much banking." (About passing lanes): "I don't have that much experience on this type of track but I feel this track is easier to pass on than most because of the banking. I feel the track will be really good."
TONY STEWART: "This car's been glued to the track since we've been here. In my qualifying run, I just said, 'Forget it,' and I pushed it flat all the way around. I did two laps flat-out. The guys really did their homework with only one week since Indy. It's real comfortable. It's pretty close. I think it's what we can do in the race." (About showing his emotions when he got out of the car): "This is the one chance where qualifying wasn't just me in the car. The team was a part of it. There are so many things that could have gone wrong...me killing the car, which I've been known to do, overshooting the pit and the gun getting stuck. Everybody did their part and everything went well." (About practice speeds): "Honestly, I didn't realize we had ran 217. We run so fast here, it really takes a lot faster speed to notice the difference here. With two laps as perfect as they were (in his qualifying run), everything came around, everyone did their part." (About short-track banking being helpful to the run): "It didn't hurt me at all. Everything we run on the high banks at Winchester, I-70 Speedway (Odessa, Mo.) Is good. It's like going to a giant Winchester here." (About passing): "You can run anywhere here you want to. On this track, you can pass in the dogleg on the front straightaway. Yesterday, my teammate (Buhl) and I split Eddie Cheever in Turn 3. This track is so comfortable, you can run anywhere."
LARRY CURRY (director of racing, Team Menard): (about pit-stop part of qualifying): "The guys went out this afternoon and practiced their stops. Tony and I were in the garage and when I came out on pit lane, I saw the green team practicing. I went to the other guys and asked them if (they) thought they were so good they didn't need to practice. They said no, that they were done. I knew they already had a plan and were ready to execute it."
END WEDNESDAY NOTES