D&R - Carb Day Notes
KARAM, HILDEBRAND COMPLETE ‘CARB DAY’ FRIDAY PRACTICE FOR 102ND INDY 500;
SAGE RECORDS 223.278 MPH, JR CLOCKS 222.027 MPH
Hot temperatures will make for interesting track conditions in Sunday’s Indy 500
Speedway, IN (May 25, 2018)- The Dreyer & Reinbold Racing duo of Sage Karam and J.R. Hildebrand completed their “Carb Day” testing runs Friday at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway as preparations continued for the 102nd Indianapolis 500 Mile Race set for Sunday, May 27, at 12:15 p.m. EDT.
Both of the DRR racers went through a variety of car settings and Firestone tire pressures in the mid-80 air temperature and track surface temps of nearly 120-degree markin the final practice before Sunday’s “Greatest Spectacle in Racing.” Temperatures are expected to reach 90 degrees this Sunday.
Karam who’ll start 24th in the 33-driver field Sunday, drove his No. 24 WIX Filters/DRR Chevrolet to a best speed of 223.278 miles per hour and completed 48 laps in the one-hour practice round over the historic two-and-a-half mile oval west of Indianapolis.
Meanwhile, Hildebrand, starting 27th Sunday in the No. 66 Salesforce/DRR Chevrolet, completed 25 circuits Friday morning with a top speed of 222.027 m.p.h.
"We just ran in traffic today and tried some things,” said Karam, competing in his fifth Indy 500. “The track was the most different it's been all month. I think the Indy Lights (Cooper) tire wear didn't help the conditions and everyone was struggling. I think the start of the race will be difficult until we get Firestone rubber down. All in all, I think the car is good and the balance is good. I think we have a good shot Sunday."
Hildebrand, making his eighth Indy 500 start Sunday, explained that his crew made a number of changes to his machine Friday, but improved the car during “Carb Day.”
“It was good to be back out there, race day conditions basically,” said J.R.. “We threw a lot at the car and got a lot to go through to make some final changes to get this thing (car) ready for race day. The boys have been working really hard. It's definitely been a challenge, but we are up to the task and will be ready to go.”
In the annual Pit Stop Challenge on Carb Day, Karam and his No. 24 WIX Filters/DRR crew took on the reigning Verizon IndyCar Series champion Josef Newgarden and the Verizon/Team Penske squad. Newgarden’s team just nipped Karam’s six-crewman contingent, 12.24 to 13.29 to advance to the next round.
The DRR drivers return to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Saturday for the full field public autograph session at 9 a.m., the public driver’s meeting at 10:30 a.m. and the 500 Festival parade in downtown Indianapolis at 12 noon.
Sunday’s 102nd Indy 500 is scheduled to begin at 12:15 p.m. EDT.
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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.