RAHAL LETTERMAN RACING ENDS PRESEASON PREPARATION WITH TOP-FIVE SEBRING RUN SEBRING, Florida - As Tom Petty once told us - the waiting is hardest part. Ryan Hunter-Reay ( ...
RAHAL LETTERMAN RACING ENDS PRESEASON PREPARATION WITH TOP-FIVE SEBRING RUN
SEBRING, Florida - As Tom Petty once told us - the waiting is hardest part.
Ryan Hunter-Reay (#17 Ethanol Dallara/Honda/Firestone) and the Rahal Letterman Racing have done all the on-track preparation they can for the opening of the 2008 IndyCar Series, and will spend the next three weeks analyzing data, considering changes and plotting strategy - but more than anything, they'll be waiting for the March 29 season opener at Homestead.
The reigning Bombardier Learjet IndyCar Rookie of the Year completed four days of IndyCar testing on a cloudy Tuesday in Sebring, Florida, ending up in the top five on the time sheets, logging a best time of 53.4570 seconds (112.464 mph) around the 1.67-mile Sebring short course.
"We tried some things this morning that didn't really work for us but the guys did a great job on figuring things out over the break and coming back with some really good changes later in the afternoon," Hunter-Reay said. "I thought we'd be a little quicker overall, but we'll go back and find out more to help us and come out strong when the season opens."
The team made a number of setup and equipment changes during the day, finding a full half-second over yesterday just in the morning outing, and then knocking off another two-tenths of a second in the afternoon despite high winds and changing weather conditions. The teams worked quickly under threatening skies and a glowing radar that showed a large rainstorm bearing down on Central Florida, but it broke up before it hit the track.
"Overall we're pretty happy with the test as we made some gains that will help us at St. Pete and the other street courses," said RLR Technical Director Jay O'Connell. "We have a lot of data to review between now and the first race and I feel confident that we will discover some things that will help us both at Homestead and St. Pete. Ryan continues to be an asset to us in the car. His experience on all types of tracks that we run on enables him to give us quality feedback that helps us get the most out of the car and driver in a timely fashion."