Friday practice: Scheckter sets pace

Toyota drivers found speed late in the first practice session Friday for the Firestone Indy 225 at Nazareth, knocking Honda's Tony Kanaan off the top spot with fast laps from four drivers. Meanwhile, the trouble for Team Menard continued

Friday practice: Scheckter sets pace

Jaques Lazier, who replaced injured Vitor Meira in its Dallara-Chevrolet, spun and hit the wall 10 minutes into the first practice session, leaving the team scrambling to repair even more damage.

The team withdrew from last weekend's IRL IndyCar Series race at Kentucky Speedway after Meira crashed in practice and broke a wrist. He was replaced for the Nazareth event by Lazier, who was placed on the shelf earlier this season when team owner John Menard chose Meira. Lazier wasn't up to speed when the car surprised him by breaking away.

"I'm going to have to go back and ask the engineers if they noticed anything," said Lazier, who wasn't hurt in the crash. "We were warming up the car. I wasn't pushing it at all and I came off the corner easy. I never jumped on the throttle, just came off the corner easy, and the thing swapped ends on me."

Toyota dominated the end of the 90-minute morning session. Target Chip Ganassi Racing team-mates Tomas Scheckter and Scott Dixon had the fastest laps, with Scheckter nearly hitting 170 mph around the one-mile circuit.

Kanaan had held the top spot throughout much of the session before four Toyota drivers - Helio Castroneves, Gil de Ferran, Scheckter and Dixon - topped Kanaan's best lap of 166.709mph. Scheckter topped out at 169.888mph.

Sam Hornish Jr, who ran away with the Kentucky race in the Gen IV Chevy, had the ninth-fastest lap during Friday's morning session. Hornish, who said on Monday that he wouldn't return to Pennzoil Panther Racing, is expected to announce his 2004 plans sometime next week.

shares
comments
Lazier replaces Meira at Menard

Previous article

Lazier replaces Meira at Menard

Next article

Qualifying: Dixon heads title rivals

Qualifying: Dixon heads title rivals
Load comments
The lasting legacy of a fallen Indycar rookie Plus

The lasting legacy of a fallen Indycar rookie

Jeff Krosnoff was plucked out of obscurity to become a respected and highly popular professional in Japan, and then got his big break in Indycar for 1996. But a tragic accident at Toronto 25 years ago cut short a promising career and curtailed his regular team-mate Mauro Martini's passion for racing

IndyCar
Jul 14, 2021
The two key areas where Dixon needs to re-assert his authority Plus

The two key areas where Dixon needs to re-assert his authority

OPINION: Having been Chip Ganassi Racing's IndyCar focal point for the best part of a decade, Scott Dixon has been so far outgunned by new team-mate Alex Palou in 2021. After finishing behind the Spaniard at his traditional happy hunting ground at Mid-Ohio, Dixon has work to do to assume his traditional position in the team and the standings

IndyCar
Jul 6, 2021
The winners and losers of IndyCar 2021 so far Plus

The winners and losers of IndyCar 2021 so far

At the halfway point in the 2021 IndyCar Series season, we've had seven winners in eight races, spread between five teams – none of them Team Penske. In this unusual season, even by IndyCar standards, who’s excelling and who’s dragging their heels?

IndyCar
Jun 18, 2021
Castroneves: How I kept it under control to make Indy 500 history Plus

Castroneves: How I kept it under control to make Indy 500 history

Helio Castroneves’ overwhelming vivaciousness outside the cockpit belies a hardcore racer who knows how to plot his moves – and then recall it all. A day after his fourth Indy 500 win, he explained his tactics

IndyCar
Jun 2, 2021
How 'chess master' Castroneves cemented his Indy legend status Plus

How 'chess master' Castroneves cemented his Indy legend status

Helio Castroneves joined AJ Foyt, Al Unser and Rick Mears with the most Indianapolis 500 wins after edging past Alex Palou on the penultimate lap of a thrilling race that validated Michael Shank's faith in the veteran Brazilian - who is discovering that there is life after Penske after all

IndyCar
Jun 1, 2021
Indy 500 preview: Will experience or youth be victorious at the Brickyard? Plus

Indy 500 preview: Will experience or youth be victorious at the Brickyard?

A quarter of the drivers racing in the 105th edition of the Indianapolis 500 are former winners - but are they the favourites? The veteran drivers largely impressed in qualifying - but there's also a plethora of young guns looking to secure victory at IndyCar's flagship race...

IndyCar
May 27, 2021
What will it take to get American drivers in Formula 1? Plus

What will it take to get American drivers in Formula 1?

The FIA says it wants American drivers in Formula 1, but would it take an IndyCar driver to transfer or does an American need to join the European junior ladder system to get there?

Formula 1
May 19, 2021
Why IndyCar is satisfying Grosjean’s appetite for his second life Plus

Why IndyCar is satisfying Grosjean’s appetite for his second life

After spending the majority of his 179-race Formula 1 career in middling to tail-end machinery, Romain Grosjean finds himself once again with an underdog team in IndyCar. While not without its challenges, he's relishing the more level playing field that means his Dale Coyne Racing crew can expect to claim a few scalps...

IndyCar
May 14, 2021