IndyCar: Carb Day 2015 rolling notebook (VIDEO)


INDIANAPOLIS – Given how busy a day this Friday is for Carb Day, there’s a lot to keep tabs on both at the track and off-track.

Here’s some notes thus far.

Honda Performance Development President Art St. Cyr held a press conference earlier Friday, and primarily noted how much testing it had done on its aero kits. St. Cyr didn’t feel the manufacturer was able to take enough credit for the work it had done in the lead-up to the race, given the number of accidents that had taken place. St. Cyr also confirmed to MotorSportsTalk that he doesn’t have any further updates on Honda’s renewal status with INDYCAR, although he said talks continue as part of the company’s overall program. The goal, St. Cyr said, is to continue to promote open-wheel racing in North America.

The last official bit of confirmation on the Tristan Vautier in the Indianapolis 500 news came from Dale Coyne Racing, via its Twitter account.

From Carb Day coverage on NBCSN, here’s Ryan Briscoe on his last-minute call-up at Schmidt Peterson Motorsports, talking to Kelli Stavast.

Meanwhile here’s Sage Karam of Chip Ganassi Racing with Jon Beekhuis on why he’s ending his day early.

Will Power and Scott Dixon went 1-2 in the Indianapolis 500 final practice in Carb Day. There were three caution periods for 16 minutes and 59 seconds, but there were no major incidents; all yellows were for debris or track inspection. Tristan Vautier was P18 in the No. 18 Dale Coyne Racing Honda with a best speed of 225.687 mph.

Speeds are below:


The “line change” is next with the Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires race next, the Freedom 100. Kevin Lee, Anders Krohn and Katie Hargitt will have the coverage.

Schmidt Peterson Motorsports’ quartet has gone 1-4 in the Indy Lights race, with Jack Harvey winning ahead of teammate Ethan Ringel under yellow flag conditions. Scott Anderson also has his first podium of the year, and RC Enerson ends P4. The full report is linked here. IndyCar’s pit stop competition is up next.

Three new liveries made their debut in Indianapolis 500 Carb Day practice.

Here’s Justin Wilson’s new Rolling Stones livery for Andretti Autosport, which is adorned in ZIP CODE tour theme. It kicks off its 15-city North American tour in San Diego.


James Davison’s No. 19 Dale Coyne Racing Honda has, as expected, taken on the aqua and black of his sports car partner Always Evolving. It’s a variant of the car he drove last year for KV Racing Technology.


James Jakes’ silver No. 7 Schmidt Peterson Motorsports car has also had a livery change. The aqua number has shifted to orange, and team co-owner Ric Peterson’s trucking company Oculus Transport Ltd. is now on the sidepods. No picture is available yet but it will be identical to the version linked below.


Helio Castroneves’ No. 3 Shell V-Power Nitro+ Team Penske Chevrolet team won the TAG Heuer Pit Stop Challenge. The release from IndyCar is below:

Helio Castroneves hopes that winning the TAG Heuer Pit Stop Challenge could be a good omen for the team.

Castroneves, driving the No. 3 Shell V-Power Nitro+ Chevrolet, defeated Charlie Kimball of Novo Nordisk Chip Ganassi Racing in the championship round. His pit crew received the $50,000 first-place prize for its speed, precision and accuracy.

The winner of the competition has gone on to win the Indianapolis 500 six times, most recently with Castroneves in 2009. It was the seventh win for Castroneves and the 15th for Team Penske in the pit stop competition.

Starting lineup grid for IMSA Petit Le Mans: Tom Blomqvist puts MSR on pole position

Petit Le Mans lineup

IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar championship contender Tom Blomqvist put the Meyer Shank Racing Acura at the front of the starting lineup for the Motul Petit Le Mans at Michelin Road Atlanta.

Blomqvist turned a 1-minute, 8.55-second lap on the 2.54-mile circuit Friday to capture his third pole position for MSR this season. Earl Bamber qualified second in the No. 02 Cadillac for Chip Ganassi Racing.

Ricky Taylor was third in the No. 10 Acura of Wayne Taylor Racing, which enters Saturday’s season finale with a 19-point lead over the No. 60 of Blomqvist and Oliver Jarvis (who will be joined by Helio Castroneves) for the 10-hour race.

PETIT LE MANS STARTING GRID: Click here for the starting lineup l Lineup by car number

PETIT LE MANS: Info on how to watch

With the pole, MSR sliced the deficit to 14 points behind WTR, which will field the trio of Taylor, Filipe Albuquerque and Brendon Hartley in Saturday’s race.

“We really needed to put the car in this kind of position,” Blomqvist said. “It makes our life a little less stressful tomorrow. It would have given the No. 10 a bit more breathing space. It’s going to be a proper dogfight tomorrow. The guys gave me such a great car. It’s been fantastic this week so far, and it really came alive. I’m hugely thankful to the boys and girls at MSR for giving me the wagon today to execute my job.

“That was a big effort from me. I knew how important it was. It’s just awesome for the guys to give them some sort of reward as well. It’s always nice to be quick. If you do the pole, you know you’ve got a quick car.”

Though WTR has a series-leading four victories with the No. 10, MSR won the Rolex 24 at Daytona and has five runner-up finishes along with its three poles.

The strong performances of the ARX-05s ensure that an Acura will win the final championship in IMSA’s premier Daytona Prototype international (DPi) division, which is being rebranded as Grand Touring Prototype in the move to LMDh cars next season.

Taylor qualified third despite sliding into the Turn 5 gravel during the closing minutes of qualifying while pushing to gain points.

“Qualifying was important for points,” Taylor said. “Going into it, if we outqualified the No. 60 Meyer Shank Acura, they had a lot to lose in terms of championship points. So, we were trying to increase the gap over 20 points which would’ve made a big difference for tomorrow. We would have loved to get the pole and qualify ahead of the No. 60, but in the scheme of the points, it didn’t change a whole lot. I’m feeling good since it’s such a long race, and the No. 10 Konica Minolta Acura team does such a good job strategizing and putting us in a good position.

“I’m very confident in our lineup and our team compared to them over the course of 10 hours. I’d put my two teammates up against those guys any day. I think we are all feeling optimistic and strong for tomorrow.”

In other divisions, PR1 Mathiasen Motorsports (LMP2), Riley Motorsports (LMP3), VasserSullivan (GTD Pro) and Paul Miller Racing (GTD) captured pole positions.

The broadcast of the 10-hour race will begin Saturday at 12:10-3 p.m. ET on NBC, moving at 7 p.m. to USA Network. Peacock will have flag-to-flag coverage.



Results by class

Fastest lap by driver

Fastest lap by driver after qualifying

Fastest lap by driver and class after qualifying

Fastest lap sequence in qualifying

Best sector times in qualifying

Time cards in qualifying

PRACTICE RESULTS: Session I l Session II l Session III