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Home Uncategorized Youngsters at the top of the speed charts after first weekend of practice for Indy 500

Youngsters at the top of the speed charts after first weekend of practice for Indy 500

Published on May 14, 2012 by

Colombia’s Sebastian Saavedra used late tow to jump to the top of the Indianapolis 500 speed chart Sunday.

His fast lap of 221.526 mph was the fastest of the weekend in practice.

Young drivers again led the speed chart on the second day of practice.

Rookies Bryan Clauson and Josef Newgarden, both with Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing, were second and third fastest on Sunday. Clauson went 221.173 while Newgarden had a 221.158. Newgarden was also the fastest driver in Saturday’s practice.

Honda-powered teams looked strong, including Dale Coyne’s team of Justin Wilson and James Jakes. Wilson turned in the fifth-fastest lap of the day at 220.615 mph.

Two-time IndyCar champ and 2008 Indy winner Scott Dixon was fourth fastest Sunday at 220.829.

Drivers and teams were busy Sunday. Thirty-one drivers turned a total of 1,138 laps.

The two drivers using Lotus engines, rookie Jean Alesi and Switzerland’s Simona de Silvestro, had the two slowest cars as problems continue to plague Lotus.

One of the big stories in the garages however was the possibility that this year’s race not be filled to capacity.

IndyCar CEO Randy Bernard is optimistic this year’s Indianapolis 500 will have its traditional 33-car starting grid.

Bernard told The Associated Press on Sunday that his priority is making sure there is a full field for the May 27 race.

It’s a hot topic around the Brickyard’s historic 2.5-mile oval. Jay Penske’s team has filed a lawsuit against engine-manufacturer Lotus and is trying to cut a deal to put engines in two cars. Without those cars, Indy’s entry list has only 31 driver-car combinations.

Another potential complication: Former Formula One driver Jean Alesi hasn’t yet passed his rookie test.

Most, including A.J. Foyt, believe things will work out, and Bernard has promised to help any way he can.

Practice resumes this afternoon. Qualifications are this weekend, and the race is scheduled for May 27.

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