Series leader Lazier tops Friday practice

The 1.5-mile Kentucky Speedway plays host to the penultimate round of the 2000 Indy Racing League this weekend.

Series leader Lazier tops Friday practice

Series leader Buddy Lazier comes into the event, the Belterra Resort 300, with a 22-point advantage over Eddie Cheever in the chase for the $1 million
Northern Light Cup.

Lazier was the fastest driver in Friday's afternoon practice session when he ran a lap at 218.770mph in his Dallara/Oldsmobile Aurora.

"The day was incredible, it was cooler this morning because the engines ran better," Lazier said. "I was amazed we were able to run so quick this afternoon with it as hot as it was.

"It's a very slippery race track, very tricky. The motor doesn't make as much horsepower when it's hot, so it's a good effort by me."

Rookie Sarah Fisher was second quickest at 218.420mph in a Dallara/Aurora. She had been the fastest driver at last month's open test session.

"Going for the pole is a little bit greedy right now," said the 19-year-old. "Certainly, the pole would be great and would give us a huge boost of confidence.

"But the most important thing this weekend is to put in a good race. We've got to get points, and we've got to finish."

Lazier's younger brother, Jaques, was third fastest at 217.816mph in a Dallara/Aurora. It was Lazier's first day in the Mid-America Freight entry, which had previously been driven by Canadian backmarker Doug Didero.

"I think it was an extremely successful day for everyone at Mid-America," Lazier said. "The fact that we put together this deal last week and are up here with Buddy Lazier and Sarah Fisher is the biggest success we could have dreamed of."

Scott Goodyear and Buzz Calkins complete the top five, while the fastest G Force runner was Al Unser Jr in seventh.

Lazier's main title rival Eddie Cheever was only 19th quickest but the series leader refused to rule him out of contention for the race.

"He's wild," Lazier said. "He let's us know it because he is pitted right behind us. He spins the wheels and smokes the tyres every time. There is nobody I would rather race hard with for a championship than Eddie. It's going to be wheel-to-wheel, with sparks flying, but it's clean racing.

"A 22-point lead is not significant. We're just a hair in front of everybody. We can't sit back or anything. It's going to be tough."

shares
comments
Penske to test at Indianapolis
Previous article

Penske to test at Indianapolis

Next article

Goodyear pulls pole out of the bag

Goodyear pulls pole out of the bag
How Ericsson achieved Indy immortality as Ganassi's main man stumbled Plus

How Ericsson achieved Indy immortality as Ganassi's main man stumbled

Chip Ganassi Racing team was strong again in the Indianapolis 500, with poleman Scott Dixon and reigning champion Alex Palou leading almost three quarters of the race between them. But when dominator Dixon was penalised for pitlane speeding, ex-Formula 1 driver Marcus Ericsson stepped up to score the biggest win of his career and seize the IndyCar points lead

IndyCar
May 30, 2022
Ranking the top 10 IndyCar drivers of 2021 Plus

Ranking the top 10 IndyCar drivers of 2021

In an enthralling 2021 IndyCar campaign, the series bounced back from its COVID-19 truncated year prior and Alex Palou defeated both the established order and his fellow young guns to clinch a maiden title. It capped a remarkable season with plenty of standout performers

IndyCar
Nov 21, 2021
How F1's other IndyCar exile finally unlocked his potential Plus

How F1's other IndyCar exile finally unlocked his potential

Romain Grosjean's swashbuckling rookie year in IndyCar captured the imagination of many in 2021. But another ex-Formula 1 driver whose potential was masked by five years of toil in, at best, middling machinery also enjoyed a breakout year in 2021 - winning twice and finishing sixth in points. Here's how Marcus Ericsson finally delivered on his promise

IndyCar
Nov 16, 2021
How Ganassi's relentless new champion outfoxed IndyCar's best Plus

How Ganassi's relentless new champion outfoxed IndyCar's best

IndyCar sophomore Alex Palou stunned by overcoming team-mate Scott Dixon and the rest of a white-hot field in 2021. He was consistently fast and crucially showed a level head, rebounding well from setbacks to put himself in a near unassailable position entering the final round

IndyCar
Nov 4, 2021
Have Harvey and RLL formed IndyCar’s next winning match-up? Plus

Have Harvey and RLL formed IndyCar’s next winning match-up?

Despite appearing to have an IndyCar job for life with Meyer Shank Racing, Jack Harvey’s departure and move to Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing sparked plenty of debate. However, Harvey's and RLL's combined strengths could prove to be a winning combination - if they get the balance right

IndyCar
Oct 17, 2021
Remembering Dan Wheldon and his last and most amazing IndyCar win Plus

Remembering Dan Wheldon and his last and most amazing IndyCar win

Saturday 16 October marks the 10th anniversary of Dan Wheldon’s death. David Malsher-Lopez pays tribute, then asks Wheldon’s race engineer from 2011, Todd Malloy, to recall that magical second victory at the Indianapolis 500

IndyCar
Oct 16, 2021
Why Kyle Kirkwood is America's new IndyCar ace-in-waiting Plus

Why Kyle Kirkwood is America's new IndyCar ace-in-waiting

Kyle Kirkwood, the record-setting junior formula driver, sealed the Indy Lights championship last weekend. But despite an absurdly strong junior career and scholarship money, his next move is far from clear

IndyCar
Oct 6, 2021
Why IndyCar title glory is just the start for Ganassi's new star Plus

Why IndyCar title glory is just the start for Ganassi's new star

Newly-crowned IndyCar champion Alex Palou has been lauded as a complete driver and veteran-like in only his second season. The 24-year-old is still in the early days of his career, but the parallels are there for all to see with his six-time champion Chip Ganassi Racing team-mate who has been CGR's team leader since 2014

IndyCar
Sep 28, 2021