INDY 500 - Monday IndyCar Post-qualification Notes
INDIANAPOLIS -RIS- (MAY 22, 2017) The Verizon IndyCar Series teams are taking advantage of spectacular weather - sunny skies, 75-degrees - to prepare their cars for next Sunday's 10st running of the Indianapolis 500-Mile Race at the venerable Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
All thirty-three starters have made practice laps to configure the cars for Race Day. Honda and Chevrolet have reset engine software to reflect correct turbo boost (back to 1.3bar from the weekend's 1.4bar settings). Downforce-inducing winglets, stripped over the weekend for speed, have been reinstalled for stability. Drivers' concentration shifts to traffic and consistent performance over the long-haul, and pit crews prepare for a long Sunday.
Max Chilton and Ed Jones emerged atop the charts on a day where speeds are less-important than consistency.
Drivers will split off over the next few days for the media tour around the country to promote the Indy 500. No rest for the wickedly fast.
James Davison ran 88 laps in Sebastien Bourdais previously-configured road-course car, topping at 223.670.
"We all know what our situation is here, we've very compromised," Davison said. "We just need to be patient."
Oriol Servia fogged down pitlane mid-afternoon, as a plume of smoke emerged from his #19 Manitowoc Dallara/Honda. Honda engineers are taking notes.
As final sponsorship deals are struck for next weekend, it looks like Taco Bell got some unexpected publicity, as polesitter Scott Dixon and retired Indy 500 champion Dario Franchitti were reportedly robbed at gunpoint by two Speedway area teens at the nearby fast food emporium.
There's no substantive proof the underage felons said, "Yo quiero Borg-Warner!"
The Indy Lights test here at the conclusion of the IndyCar practice session. That ends public activity here until Friday's Concert Day, er, Carb Day action takes place.
The RIS family sends its prayers to the family of 2006 MotoGP champion and American World Superbike champion, Nicky Hayden, who passed away today following injuries sustained after a road accident last week. He was 35 years old.
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Tom has been a contributor to RIS since 1992. He was invited to join the staff as a full-time reporter/editor in 1995, and has covered IndyCar, Formula 1, NASCAR, Grand-Am, ALMS and the 24 Hours of Le Mans. In addition to his RIS work, Tom has been a contributor for General Motors, Nissan, Toyota and the ACO.