Conor Daly honors friend killed Saturday amid Indianapolis unrest

Chris Graythen/Getty Images
0 Comments

IndyCar driver Conor Daly posted a poignant tribute to Chris Beaty, a former Indiana University football player and Indianapolis business owner who was killed Saturday amid protests and rioting in the city.

Daly said he got to know Beaty, who owned an event and marketing promotions company, five years ago when he was organizing Indianapolis 500 afterparties.

Daly annually had been involved in Beaty’s parties since then and said Beaty helped get him home earlier this year when Daly’s blood sugar crashed while at an event.

TAKING A STAND: Lewis Hamilton speaks out on racial strife

“The world lost a tremendous person. RIP Chris Beaty,” wrote Daly, who also tweeted “The violence has to stop.”

Daly was asked about the tweet Wednesday by NBCSports.com during an IndyCar Zoom.

“Obviously Chris was a pretty close friend of mine,” Daly said Wednesday. “Obviously what’s going on now is just tough to see no matter who you are. I just wanted to say something because just how good of a person he was. I didn’t want to dive into anything and create any big story about it or anything. I just felt like he deserved some words.

“Obviously he was out there trying to help protect some people who were getting robbed. It’s incredible to see that level of a person that he was. He definitely deserved the respect that people certainly in Indianapolis are giving him. It’s a tough situation all across the country. But, yeah, he was a great guy and he’ll definitely be riding with us this weekend. He was a big IndyCar fan, as well. That’s pretty cool.”

NASCAR’s Bubba Wallace and Formula One six-time champion Lews Hamilton called upon fellow drivers to be more outspoken about racial strife and social issues.

Daly said it’s important for drivers to speak their minds but also sometimes tricky on how to weigh in on big-picture topics outside racing.

“There’s a lot of business aspects to this sport, for sure, that we have to be aware of,” said Daly, who will be driving the No. 59 Chevrolet for Carlin in Saturday’s season opener at Texas Motor Speedway (8 p.m. ET, NBC). “There are companies that support us, support our team, stuff like that. But realistically you got to say what comes from the heart as well.

“I think it’s been great to see a lot of drivers saying what they have. I think it’s a pretty unified message between all the stuff that we’ve seen put on the Internet, for sure. It’s good to see us as a community doing what we are doing. Hopefully we can continue to get some positivity going with our race this weekend as well.”

Daly’s helmet in Saturday night’s race will feature a #LiveLikeChris tribute to Beaty, an Indianapolis native who was an offensive lineman at Indiana from 2000-04.

According to the Indianapolis Star, Beaty died after suffering multiple gunshot wounds during Saturday night’s unrest in downtown Indianapolis. Memorials, including a street mural honoring Beaty, have been happening around the city.

 

Graham Rahal also posted Monday on Twitter about his interaction with Beaty.

Daly, Rahal and the rest of the IndyCar Series will return to action Saturday night at Texas Motor Speedway (8 p.m. ET, NBC).

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

Petit Le Mans lineup
IMSA
0 Comments

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 p.m. ET on NBC, moving at 3 p.m. to USA Network.


QUALIFYING

Results

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