Kanaan tops windy Indy manufacturer test

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Kanaan tops windy Indy manufacturer test
David Malsher
By: David Malsher
May 2, 2018, 9:47 PM

Tony Kanaan put AJ Foyt Racing-Chevrolet at the top of the times during manufacturer testing at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, but the strong winds saw teams pack up early.

Kanaan, the 2013 Indy 500 winner, lapped the iconic 2.5-mile oval at an average of 226.680mph when running qualifying boost (1.4-bar) while Ed Carpenter was second with a 224.466 best.

Gabby Chaves, on the track where he made Harding Racing-Chevrolet’s debut last year, was third on 223.658mph.

Robert Wickens, who completed the IMS rookie orientation program only yesterday morning, was fourth fastest in the Schmidt Peterson Motorsports-Honda.

SPM’s general manager Piers Phillips, who also calls Wickens’ strategy, told Motorsport.com: “He was amazing for what was his first proper test day at IMS. He was confident, gives great feedback and he picks up on all the little things he should.

“We did a lot of work for Honda –  and he’s quick.”

Charlie Kimball, who frequently stars at Indy, finishing third in 2015 and leading several laps last year for Ganassi, was fifth quickest for Carlin-Chevrolet ahead of the second Foyt car of Matheus Leist.

The Chip Ganassi Racing-Hondas of 2017 third-place finisher Ed Jones and 2008 winner Scott Dixon were seventh and ninth, split by Danica Patrick in the second Carpenter car.

“I was flat out…so everything has felt really good,” she said. “It’s just a matter of working on little feelings I have as well as trying things, because quite honestly it feels pretty planted so it’s just small little changes and kind of feeling how the tires go over the course of the 20-some laps.

“There’s no point in rushing. Even sitting on pit lane after doing 20-some laps, I was like ‘Let’s be mature. Let’s go back, let’s make sure everything is where we want it to be and be methodical and come back out here.’ That’s what we did. 

“Today was about building confidence, not breaking it, so even if all I do is drive around with really nominal changes all day and just kind of keep feeling it and feeling it, that is a successful day today.”

2016 polesitter James Hinchcliffe (SPM) and Carlin’s Max Chilton were 10th and 11th.

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About this article

Series IndyCar
Drivers Tony Kanaan
Teams A.J. Foyt Enterprises
Author David Malsher
Article type Testing report