Thursday, 12 May 2016

Dixon Tops Timesheets.

Kiwi Scott Dixon tops practice for Angie's List Grand Prix of Indianapolis.


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On the first day of practice  at IMS  for the month of May the reigning  IndyCar Series champion Scott Dixon came out on top in a late flurry of fast laps to close Thursdays afternoon practice for the Angie's List Grand Prix of Indianapolis, setting notice that the track record may be in jeopardy this weekend.
Dixon, in the No. 9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet, clocked a lap of 1 minute, 9.8281 seconds (125.743 mph) around the 2.439-mile Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course. It edged the top lap set by defending pole and race winner Will Power in the morning session, 1:09.8943 (125.624 mph), in the No. 12 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet.
Power holds the track record, established last year in the Firestone Fast Six segment of qualifying, at 1:09.4886 (126.357 mph).
"We rolled off (in the morning) not too bad," said Dixon, the four-time series champion and 2008 Indianapolis 500 winner. "We did the usual thing where we try a few different things and circle back to where we started. That's how the afternoon at least ended. I don't think you get a really good gist on speeds until tomorrow on most of the field.
"The car felt decent. ... We'll take what we learned today and hopefully tomorrow should be strong. It's definitely going to be very tight."
Simon Pagenaud, winner of the two most recent races this season and the championship leader by 48 points over Dixon, was third on the combined speed chart with a lap of 1:09.9894 (125.453 mph) this afternoon in the No. 22 Menards Team Penske Chevrolet. Pagenaud's lap beat Graham Rahal by a scant 0.0002 of a second, with Rahal fourth on the combined chart at 1:09.9896 (also 125.453 mph) in the No. 15 Steak 'n Shake Honda.
Power and Pagenaud are the only two drivers to qualify in the top five in both previous Angie's List races. The Aussie isn't taking anything for granted in Verizon P1 Award qualifying Friday.
"Just based on the (practice) times, it's going to be seriously close, very close," Power said. "The top 10 is probably covered by a tenth or a tenth and a half (of a second) or something. It's very tight."
A third practice session is scheduled for 11-11:45 a.m. ET Friday  in the U.S. prior to knockout qualifying beginning at 3 p.m. ET that leads to the Firestone Fast Six. 
The 82-lap race, the fifth event on the 2016 race schedule, starts at 3:50 p.m. ET Saturday. 
The Angie's List Grand Prix weekend kicks off an epic month of May at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The 100th Running of the Indianapolis 500 presented by PennGrade Motor Oil follows directly, with practice on the 2.5-mile oval May 16-20, qualifying May 21-22 and the historic race on May 29.

                               Media Quotes ex IMS Media and IndyCar Media.
          Photos of Scott Dixon at IMS and the city skyline in 2015 ex the David Turner collection.

Combined times from Practice 1 and 2 on the opening day of Thursday May 12th 2016.

Rank Car Driver Name    C/A/E/T        Session                      Time Speed      Total Lap
1 9 Dixon, Scott            D/C/C/F         Practice 2                01:09.8281 125.743 49
2 12 Power, Will            D/C/C/F         Practice 1                01:09.8943 125.624 52
3 22 Pagenaud, Simon   D/C/C/F        Practice 2                01:09.9894 125.453 55 
4 15 Rahal, Graham       D/H/H/F         Practice 2              01:09.9896 125.453 70   
5 11 Bourdais, Sebastien D/C/C/F          Practice 2             01:09.9944 125.444 54
6 7 Aleshin, Mikhail        D/H/H/F          Practice 2             01:10.0578 125.331 57
7 21 Newgarden, Josef   D/C/C/F          Practice 2             01:10.0741 125.302 56
8 5 Hinchcliffe, James     D/H/H/F         Practice 2             01:10.0815 125.288 25
9 2 Montoya, Juan Pablo D/C/C/F          Practice 2            01:10.1696 125.131 51
10 28 Hunter-Reay, Ryan D/H/H/F         Practice 2            01:10.1933 125.089 48
11 3 Castroneves, Helio   D/C/C/F          Practice 2           01:10.2480 124.991 50
12 16 Pigot, Spencer (R)  D/H/H/F         Practice 2           01:10.2541 124.981 60
13 83 Kimball, Charlie     D/C/C/F          Practice 2            01:10.2880 124.920 55
14 18 Daly, Conor (R)     D/H/H/F          Practice 2            01:10.2937 124.910 56
15 27 Andretti, Marco     D/H/H/F          Practice 2             01:10.2967 124.905 51
16 19 Chaves, Gabby      D/H/H/F          Practice 2             01:10.3062 124.888 66
17 6 Hildebrand, JR        D/C/C/F           Practice 2             01:10.3407 124.827 50
18 98 Rossi, Alexander (R) D/H/H/F       Practice 2              01:10.4615 124.613 63
19 35 Tagliani, Alex         D/H/H/F         Practice 2               01:10.5106 124.526 31  
20 26 Munoz, Carlos        D/H/H/F         Practice 1               01:10.5295 124.493 33
21 8 Chilton, Max (R)      D/C/C/F          Practice 2               01:10.5975 124.373 43
22 14 Sato, Takuma        D/H/H/F         Practice 2                01:10.6312 124.313 50
23 41 Hawksworth, Jack D/H/H/F          Practice 1                01:10.6321 124.312 39
24 10 Kanaan, Tony        D/C/C/F          Practice 2                01:10.6387 124.300 45
25 61 Brabham, Matt (R) D/C/C/F         Practice 2                 01:10.9769 123.708 28
(R) Rookie
Total Laps for Combined Sessions: 1237
(C)hassis: D=Dallara | (A)erokit: C=Chevy, H=Honda | (E)ngine: C=Chevy, H=Honda | (T)ire: F=Firestone 
Driver Update.
Gabby Chaves named to drive Dale Coyne Racing No. 19 car for both May races
Gabby Chaves, the Sunoco Rookie of the Year for both the Indianapolis 500 and Verizon IndyCar Series in 2015, was named Wednesday by Dale Coyne Racing as driver of the No. 19 Boy Scouts of America Honda for the Angie's List Grand Prix of Indianapolis and 100th Running of the Indianapolis 500 presented by PennGrade Motor Oil.
"We're very excited to have Gabby join us for the next two races," team owner Dale Coyne said. "We've been in communication for a long time and it's all finally come together. (Gabby) showed a lot of maturity last season, he was quick, mistake-free and made great decisions behind the wheel that you don't normally see coming from a rookie. We look forward to seeing what he can do in our No. 19 car."
Even though he hasn't raced since last August's season finale, Chaves does have experience at Indianapolis. He finished 15th in his road course debut and 16th in his first Indianapolis 500 racing for Bryan Herta Autosport last May. The Mazda Road to Indy graduate also won the Freedom 100 as part of his Indy Lights championship-winning season in 2014.
"What can I say, I'm really excited," Chaves said. "It's been the longest off-season of my life. Throughout my whole career I've always been on the grid in the first race of the season and this has been the first time that I haven't. 
"I've been speaking with Dale for years now and I'm excited to get something going with him and the team. I'm just really looking forward to it. With my time out of the car, I've really been able to value what it means to me to be in a race car. I can now get back on track and enjoy it even more."

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