SPEEDWAY, Ind. — Tuesday rain out left a lot of teams a day behind in preparation for the 107th running of the Indianapolis 500. The drivers with Chip Ganassi Racing wasted no time in flexing their muscles throughout practice on Wednesday.
By 6:00 p.m. all four of Ganassi drivers finished the day in the Top 10 in overall speed, granted all four of those speeds were in race trim running in traffic and should not be looked too heavily into in regards to raw speed in preparation for qualifying.
Nevertheless, Sato said it was a good day as they got their feet wet for the week.
“Today was a beautiful day,” Sato said. “Today wasn’t truly indicative of race speed, but it’s good to be at the top of the speed chart.”
“For us, it was a good day,” said Dale Coyne driver David Malukas, who was 16th on the overall speed chart.
“At the beginning, we took it slow and then it got a little too spicy so we had to dial it back a little bit. But, it was about racing in traffic, and at the end we were having trouble making tires last so we’ll focus on that before we start preparing for qualifying.”
Malukas added that they had some trouble in traffic as they engaged in pack running throughout the day.
Ed Carpenter Racing drivers were among the first to get started on qualifying setup. Rinus Veekay had the fastest speed without the help of an aerodynamic tow on the day at 223.212 mph.
“It was a good day to be out here,” Veekay said. “It was good getting up top those speeds. We still think there is a lot more in it which is a good sign.”
Veekay and his boss/teammate Ed Carpenter were both atop the no-tow chart. Carpenter at one point unleashed a consistent four-lap average at 221.543 mph. It must be noted that this was without the planned boost increase the cars will get on Fast Friday.
“It’s good to get a feel on it,” Veekay said of taking qualifying runs this early. “It’s good to be fast early on and it’s a consistent battle to be faster. With raw pace, it’s good to find that.”
It was also a good day for RC Enerson of Abel Motorsports who passed his required rookie orientation program. He had the track to himself to start the day in order to get the meat of that program done. He finished the day overall 33rd on the speed chart ahead of Callum Ilott of Juncos-Hollinger Racing.
It was a tough day for Ilott who struggled to find any semblance of speed throughout the day. His best speed of 223.409 mph put him 34th and last.
Practice continues tomorrow at Noon and will run until 6:00 p.m. with another favorable forecast for drivers to put work in.
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