Track Report: May 23
INDIANAPOLIS May 23, 2016 --The last practice prior to Carb Day at Indianapolis Motor Speedway proved eventful yet productive at times for the 14, 35, and 41 teams of A.J. Foyt Racing.
After a satisfactory qualification day for the No. 14 ABC Supply Honda, Takuma Sato reported he was able to test out his car in traffic for the first time today, and feels confident looking ahead to this weekend’s race. He logged 85 laps and posted a speed of 224.6mph which was 16th fastest.
“I think it was a productive day,” said Sato. “I was able to learn about the car in traffic finally for the first time because we never had the opportunity to run in traffic on practice days because we had so much going on. We tried a few test items, some worked pretty good, some didn’t so I think we found a good baseline for the race. We’ll go through the data over the next couple days because we still need to try a few things on Carb Day, but I think we are in a good position now.”
The No. 35 Alfe Heat Treating crew worked extremely hard to ready Alex Tagliani’s backup car for Sunday’s 100th Running of the Indianapolis 500 after yesterday’s qualification accident, and was able to get the car back on track prior to the end of today’s practice. With Friday’s Carb Day, Tagliani hopes to really test the car and make necessary adjustments in preparation for this weekend’s race.
“We made a few runs today, with big thanks to the crew for working hard to put the car back on track,” Tagliani said. “I’m sure it was a lot of work for them. I guess our Carb Day will become very important to us, and hopefully we have a good race.”
Unfortunately for Jack Hawksworth, driver of the No. 41 ABC Supply Honda, his woes for this year’s race continued during practice, losing the engine to failure late in today’s session. He logged 39 laps and posted a top speed of 223.1mph.
“We’ve had our fair share of setbacks these past two weeks,” said Hawksworth. “This is the cherry on top of the cake. We’ll obviously have to change the engine. I was pretty happy with the car today. Now we need to get miles on the new engine on Carb Day. That’s important to break it in before Sunday. Then we reset and go to the Indy 500.”
The cars of A.J. Foyt Racing return to the Brickyard Friday, May 27 for Carb Day, with final IndyCar practice from 11:00am to 12:00pm ET. Additionally, the teams will participate in the Tag Heuer Pit Stop Competition beginning at 1:30pm ET. Action from the track can be seen on NBCSN from 11:00am to 3:30pm ET.