News & Multimedia

Dixon On Top As Grand Prix of Indianapolis Test Concludes

Reigning Indianapolis 500 champion Tony Kanaan was accorded the ceremonial first lap of the new 2.439-mile, 14-turn Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course, and quickly was joined by 24 other eager Verizon IndyCar Series drivers during an Open Test.



It didn’t faze Kanaan that the lap in the No. 10 Target Chip Ganassi Racing car was unconventional – crossing the Yard of Bricks on the front straight in a clockwise direction. In fact, he said it was a thrill, and that observation reverberated throughout Gasoline Alley.

"Driving the car it doesn't feel strange because you're focused on hitting your marks. But every time I'm on pit lane and looking at the cars going out it just doesn't look right," said Ryan Briscoe, who was second quickest overall at 1 minute, 9.6558 seconds in the No. 8 NTT Data car for Ganassi Racing. "It's just a lot of fun to drive and fun to be learning a new track."

Five hours of track time provided drivers and teams an opportunity to get a baseline for the Grand Prix of Indianapolis practice sessions May 8, when lap times will be considerably more crucial. The three rounds of qualifications are May 9 and the standing start for the 82-lap race is at 3:43 p.m. (ET) May 10.

Less than 24 hours later is the initial practice for the 98th Indianapolis 500 – in a counter-clockwise direction on the 2.5-mile oval.

Reigning series champion Scott Dixon jumped to the top of the time chart on the last of his 46 laps in the No. 9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing car at 1:09.5969, while Simon Pagenaud was third (1:09.7544) in the No. 77 Schmidt Peterson Hamilton Motorsports car and posted the most laps (57). Three-time Indianapolis 500 champion Helio Castroneves (1:10.0209) was fourth in the No. 3 Verizon Team Penske car, and Ryan Hunter-Reay (1:10.0237) was fifth in the No. 28 DHL car for Andretti Autosport.

The top 19 cars were separated by less than a second.

Will Power, the pole sitter three days earlier for the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park in the No. 12 Verizon Team Penske car, topped the morning session time chart at 1:11.2128 seconds as teams and drivers made multiple car adjustments to pair with the hardest compound of Firestone primary tires (also to be used at Mid-Ohio in August). The alternate red tires, which trade more grip for quicker degradation, will be available for race weekend.

The new track received high marks for its flow and racability, which will be enhanced when more tire rubber is laid in the turns. Section times included 196 mph down the front straight into the sharp right-hand Turn 1 and 184 mph on the Hulman Boulevard straight entering the left-hand Turn 7.

"Passing is going to be really good because the brake zones are so big and heavy," Briscoe said. "Turn 1 and down the Hulman Boulevard straight into Turn 7 will be big passing zones. You come out of Turn 4, sort of a medium-speed corner, and then flat out through a chicane going up through the gears almost as fast as the front straight into another big brake zone. You have those two corners and overall it's really fast and flowing and lots of changes of direction."

Originally laid out for the Formula One race from 2000-07, the road course underwent a $5 million reconfiguration and infrastructure upgrade that includes new viewing mounds for spectators looking over the oval Turn 2. Hundreds utilized the vantage spots during the test day under mostly cloudy skies.

The test marked the first time that Justin Wilson made clockwise laps at the facility since his 2003 Formula One appearance when he finished eighth for Jaguar Grand Prix.

“It’s a challenging track, trying to get the power down and get the entries just right," said Wilson, driving the No. 19 Dale Coyne Racing entry. "I think this new track is going to be a lot better. The corners leading into the back straight give you a lot of options and so does the corner leading into the front straight, so you can definitely try and set something up and the straights are long enough that you can definitely make something happen.”

Added Hunter-Reay, the race winner at Barber Motorsports Park: "I'm really excited about the course; it's a lot of fun in the race car. Big, long straights leading to tight corners will lead to plenty of passing. I think it's going to make for a great show.”
 

Show More Show Less
Now Viewing
Dixon On Top As Grand Prix of Indianapolis Test Concludes
 
Dixon On Top As Grand Prix of Indianapolis Test Concludes
Reigning series champion Scott Dixon jumped to the top of the time chart on the last of his 46 laps in the No. 9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing car at 1:09.5969, while Simon Pagenaud was third (1:09.7544) in the No. 77 Schmidt Peterson Hamilton Motorsports car and posted the most laps (57). Three-time Indianapolis 500 champion Helio Castroneves (1:10.0209) was fourth in the No. 3 Verizon Team Penske car, and Ryan Hunter-Reay (1:10.0237) was fifth in the No. 28 DHL car for Andretti Autosport.
Read More
Related Media
Graham Rahal
 
Monday Racing Roundup: Rahal Thrills Ohio Fans, Inches Closer to Montoya
Rahal's surge in the second half of the Verizon IndyCar Series season continued with his second win in five weeks. Rahal, who started 13th in the 90-lap race in the No. 15 Steak 'n Shake Honda for Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing, closed to nine points of Verizon IndyCar Series championship front-runner Juan Pablo Montoya with two races left in the season. There are 10 entries mathematically eligible for the title.
Read More
Josef Newgarden
 
Newgarden Looks to Continue Upward Mobility at Mid-Ohio
Josef Newgarden made a lot of new fans last year at Mid-Ohio. The third-year IndyCar driver came tantalizingly close to earning his first Verizon IndyCar Series win, and if it weren’t for a problematic final pit stop, the Tennessee native could have gone on to victory for the upstart Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing team.
Read More
Sherwin-Williams
 
Sherwin-Williams Joins IMS, INDYCAR as Official Partner in Multi-Year Agreement
Sherwin-Williams, an industry leader in paint and coatings, will serve as the Official Paint and Finishing Partner of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, INDYCAR, the Verizon IndyCar Series, Indianapolis 500 Mile Race, Angie’s List Grand Prix of Indianapolis and the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Crown Royal 400 at the Brickyard as part of a multi-year partnership agreement.
Read More
Ryan Hunter-Reay
 
Monday Racing Roundup: Hunter-Reay Tops All-American Podium at Iowa
Hunter-Reay prevailed by .5046 of a second to become the ninth different winner in 13 Verizon IndyCar Series races this season. Sunoco Rookie of the Year candidate Sage Karam finished a career-high third.
Read More
Ryan Hunter-Reay
 
Pruett's Preview: Iowa Corn 300 at Iowa Speedway
When Ryan Hunter-Reay thinks back to 2014, lasting memories come to mind. The 2012 Verizon IndyCar Series champion motored to his first win at the legendary Indianapolis 500 in May of 2014, adding his likeness to the famed Borg-Warner trophy and his name to the roster of open-wheel heroes who drove across the yard of bricks and into the history books.
Read More
Items 1 - 5 of 276
Reserve one of our hospitality suites for your next event!
To start planning your event at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway please fill out our Information Request Form or contact Laura Wyamn at (317) 492-8557 or email at lwyman@brickyard.com.
Latest Tweets
Curious about the hot topics for the 8th annual @RedBullINDY #IndyGP? Here ya go! http://t.co/XHw1YXPuEu http://t.co/kRKptSlb8F
about 2 hours ago