IPS: Michigan: Friday notes, quotes

Infiniti Pro Series rookie Jeff Simmons turned the fastest overall lap of Pro Series practice during the morning session. He had a lap of 28.0763, 189.094 in his No. 20 Western Union Speed Team Dallara/Infiniti/Firestone. *** INFINITI PRO...

Infiniti Pro Series rookie Jeff Simmons turned the fastest overall lap of Pro Series practice during the morning session. He had a lap of 28.0763, 189.094 in his No. 20 Western Union Speed Team Dallara/Infiniti/Firestone.



JEFF SIMMONS (No. 20 Western Union Speed Team Dallara/Infiniti/Firestone):

"We have been to enough of the big tracks now that our car has a basic setup that we show up with. We try a few things, but we usually don't find any improvement. We tried a few things today, and it didn't seem to make any difference. We ran the same time now that we ran this morning when we were alone. When we are not in the draft, I know what we can do. I just don't know what the other guys can do. Qualifying will be fine. I just don' t know what the other guys can do alone. I think we will have a pretty good race car. We are pretty good in the draft. Tomorrow we will see what everyone can do alone."

ED CARPENTER (No. 14 Futaba/Delphi/A.J. Foyt Racing Dallara/Infiniti/Firestone):

"It was a good day for us. I'm glad to get back to the big tracks. It's not that we struggle at the smaller tracks, but things just don't seem to go our way. I'm more confident at these bigger tracks, because I think we have a stronger package at them. I'm looking forward to qualifying tomorrow and the race on Sunday."

MARK TAYLOR (No. 4 Fulmar Panther Dallara/Infiniti/Firestone):

"It (the track) felt pretty strange. I thought it was going to be like Fontana (California Speedway). When we came here, it ended up being not very much like it at all. We were working hard toward the end there, and we were really thinking about it all day. I feel fairly comfortable now, and we can work toward tomorrow. We have been running without the draft most of the day. We got caught up in the draft this morning, but that was more of a case that we were slow enough to share. We are hoping that we can maybe catch a few people up, drop in the line and maybe have a push behind me, have someone to work with. Maybe in the next session, that's what we will work on and see how the car responds to that. With the amount of wind there is today, that is affecting you enough, never mind the car in front. I know that we found a lot in this last session. I am fairly confident that we will have a chance at it (the pole) anyway."

ROSS FONFERKO (No. 6 Sam Schmidt Motorsports Dallara/Infiniti/Firestone): (Works at a restaurant in Bloomington, Illinois):

"Last night we finalized everything around 7 p.m., and then around 10:30 or 11, I found out I had to close the restaurant. I got home around 1:30 a.m. I got a couple hours of sleep, then I had to get up and drive here this morning. We didn't think it was a great idea to rush and try to get everything done in the morning. We decided to forgo this morning's practice, and then come back this afternoon and see what we could do with it. So far, we're all right. It was kind of a warm-up session for us, but we'll be in the fight when the time comes. We're going to go ahead and make sure the car is squared away, get rid of some downforce and make the car go a little bit faster. Hopefully, the motor will be strong enough that we'll have a good flat time and not have to worry about doing too much to the car. We didn't get to run in a lot of traffic today, so our times are going to show that and be a little slower. I think once we get freed up and run up in the traffic, our time is going to be right there."(About finishing third in Pro Series debut last week): "I was elated. That was a great race for us and a great race for Sam Schmidt Motorsports. We had a lot of cars toward the front. I was actually happier with that than I ever could have been with that finish. I never thought I was going to finish third, and while I was obviously hoping for something well, I never thought it would be that good."

G.J. MENNEN (No. 25 Automatic Fire Sprinklers Dallara/Infiniti/Firestone):

About competing in the Craftsman Trucks and Infiniti Pro Series this weekend.

"Yeah, I think so. It's two definitely different (vehicles). The truck is, I guess, about 30 miles an hour slower, and that's a lot. It's a big difference in terms of the feel. In the truck, it's moving around a lot, and in the Infiniti Pro cars, you're not moving around as much. It's definitely a different deal going into the corners. In the Infiniti car, you are just about flat out, where in the trucks, you aren't flat out. My approach to each race will definitely be different because of that."


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About this article
Series Indy Lights
Drivers Sam Schmidt , Jeff Simmons , A.J. Foyt