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INDYCAR NEWS 

Mann impresses Conquest in test

Conquest Racing boss Eric Bachelart said Indy Lights graduate Pippa Mann settled in immediately as she made her IndyCar testing debut at Texas Motor Speedway on Tuesday.

The Briton's run was postponed by a day due to poor weather conditions at the track on Monday, but she managed nearly a full day of running on Tuesday, interrupted only by a brief fuel pump issue.

"Pippa quickly got up to speed and was setting competitive lap times early on and that isn't always the case for someone turning their first laps in an Indycar," said Bachelart.

"She did a really great job and provided really good feedback to the team, which helped us to make some changes and make the car even better balanced and faster. Overall I'm very pleased with how the day went and with what we were able to accomplish."

Mann added: "It's the first time I have driven an Indycar, as well as my first run at Texas Motor Speedway, so before we got started I really didn't know what to expect. It didn't take much time for me to get comfortable in the car and up to speed. We ran some competitive lap-times, both on new and used tyres.

"We lost some track time during the middle of the day with the fuel pump issue, but I can't thank the guys enough for working so hard to get us back out there, which paid off because we made even more progress after that."

The 27-year-old is keen to put together a partial IndyCar programme for 2011, focusing on oval races and including the Indianapolis 500.

Several IndyCar teams have been in action this week, with HVM's Simona de Silvestro and Panther's JR Hildebrand also running at Texas, while the KV, Penske and Foyt squads were joined at Barber Motorsports Park by Charlie Kimball in Ganassi's new second team. The first official full-field winter test takes place at Barber on 14-15 March.

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