Rain Cuts Indy 500 Fast Friday Short
Marco Andretti said he is happy with the qualifying setup of his car and will likely skip Saturday morning’s practice session.
“I’ll be in my bed tomorrow morning,” Marco said. “You don’t learn a lot. In fact, you can fool yourself. So I think we are close enough from our last couple of runs that we can just run it and qualify.
“If it rains in the afternoon you don’t want to be as conservative on your first run because that could be the pole run if there isn’t a top-nine shootout. So you have to go for it on the first run.”
While the Andretti cars have been strong all week, Marco Andretti believes there are plenty of other drivers capable of putting up the fastest four-lap average on Pole Day.
“(Will) Power put up some good laps,” Andretti said. “It’s just going to take a good balance. I think there are five of us in the running for the pole but as far as favorite – there is going to be a lot of factors tomorrow. Hopefully I’ll be on the good end of that. They are drawing numbers today, so that will be a factor, as well.”
Viso’s fastest lap came 1 hour and 7 minutes into practice. There were no incidents and 32 of the 33 drivers entered in the race hit the track including 1996 winner Buddy Lazier, who completed his refresher course. The only driver that did not turn laps was rookie driver Conor Daly, who crashed in Turn 1 on Thursday and was waiting for his car to be repaired.
Last year’s pole winner was Ryan Briscoe when he was at Team Penske. This year he is back with team owner Chip Ganassi, who he ran for as a rookie in 2005.
Briscoe has been fast in race setup but didn’t get a chance to fully practice his qualifying setup on Friday.
“Today was all about qualifying runs and trimming the car out,” Briscoe said. “We felt pretty confident with it. The setup felt pretty strong, and we were able to do a few runs, clear of traffic. As far as car balance goes, we felt good, but the speed was a little bit down so we need to see what we can do to squeeze a little more speed out of it for tomorrow. Overall, I felt we got the most out of the day before the rain came.”