Team KOOL Green's Jonny Kane was fourth fastest in provisional qualifying today at the Grand Prix of Long Beach. Kane clocked a lap of 1:16.744 seconds, averaging 92.317 mph around the 11-turn street circuit. Kane's rookie teammate Jeff Simmons...
Team KOOL Green's Jonny Kane was fourth fastest in provisional qualifying today at the Grand Prix of Long Beach. Kane clocked a lap of 1:16.744 seconds, averaging 92.317 mph around the 11-turn street circuit. Kane's rookie teammate Jeff Simmons was strong in morning practice, but watched much of qualifying after clipping a tire barrier early in the session. Simmons still managed the 13th best lap of the day, completing the 1.97-mile course in 1:17.948 seconds (90.891 mph).
Jason Bright earned the provisional pole as the session ended, crossing the finish line with a time of 1:16.178 seconds (93.003 mph). Scott Dixon was second with his quick time of 1:16.549 seconds (92.552 mph), while Tony Renna was third with a lap of 1:16.721 seconds (92.345 mph).
JEFF SIMMONS, #26 Team KOOL Green Lola T97/20: (13th with a lap-time of 1:17.948 seconds / 90.891 mph)
"I was going down into Turn 1 when I came up behind (Scott) Dixon. He appeared to be braking a little early, so I thought he was letting me by. I dove down the inside and he started to turn in. I had to pinch it to avoid him and then I hung the KOOL car out at the exit, catching the last tire with the right rear wheel. It's a shame because the car was better and we could have improved. Some of the changes we made for qualifying made the car quite different, so it took a few laps to get used to that.
"I like the track a lot. There are some large bumps that are almost strategic as you enter or exit a turn. It really affects the car. We made small improvements to counter that. Those bumps are the only part of the track that isn't fun."
JONNY KANE, #27 Team KOOL Green Lola T97/20: (4th with a lap-time of 1:16.744 seconds / 92.317 mph)
"I was second-quickest this morning in practice, two-tenths off the fastest time. Fourth this afternoon isn't bad and I think the quickest guy went out there on new tires. I know one of the three cars that went out in front of me in the closing minutes went out on new rubber. He wasn't quick before the tire change, so hopefully that means we're not too far behind. If we sort out a slight misfire we experienced with the KOOL car I think we'll get back up to the front.
"I'd say the circuit is a little bit easier than last year, although there's one corner that's a little faster than before. The new part of the circuit is fairly wide, making for a wide exit in one corner and a wide entry for another. It takes a little while to get used to that because the second corner tightens up on the exit. You need to be careful there."