Just call him Swifty. Sebastien Bourdais/No.11 Team Mistic-E-Cigs KVSH Racing Chevrolet was fastest all session for the first two-hour Verizon Indycar Series practice session Thursday at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. His time of 1:10.9378/123.775 mph was set early on for him, and he was the only driver in the 1:10’s on the 2.439-mile road course.
The track and weather were hot – heating up to 86 degrees F/30 C for ambient, and 110 F/43.3C for the circuit. There was a partial cloud cover for the session.
The top five drivers were Chevrolet-powered – Bourdais; 2014 IndyCar Champion, Will Power/No.1 Verizon Team Penske; 2015 LBGP winner, Scott Dixon/No.9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing; Sebastian Saavedra/No.8 AFS Chip Ganassi Racing; and Simon Pagenaud/No.22 DeVilbiss Team Penske.
The top Honda driver was Takuma Sato/No.14 ABC Supply AJ Foyt Racing in sixth place.
Bourdais’ teammate, Stefano Coletti/No.4 KV Racing Technology Chevrolet, was the top Rookie in twentieth place.
All 25 drivers were on course, although Dixon waited for more than hour before going on course, only turning 18 laps – the fewest of all drivers. James Hinchcliffe/No.5 Arrow/Lucas Oil Schmidt Peterson Honda ran the most laps – 54. He finished nineteenth. Bourdais ran the second most laps – 47.
The session was quiet and almost a parade for the longest time with the top five positions not changing until Dixon came on course.
The only drama was a four + minute Red Flag while a stalled Saavedra was restarted in Turn One, with help from the Holmatro Safety Crew. He obviously recovered well to finish fourth overall.
Rookie Victor Franzoni/No.21 M1 Racing was the fastest of 20 drivers in the Mazda Pro Series group at 1:24.6835/103.685 mph; but the time set in the morning by Rookie Timothe Buret No.6 Juncos Racing remained the top overall.
In the Mazda USF2000 Series, the afternoon’s fastest driver was Aaron Telitz/No.3 Cape Motorsports w/WTR at 1:27.0794/100.832 mph, but the morning time of teammate Nico Jamin/No.2 was faster overall, of the 17 drivers.
IndyCar driver, Helio Castroneves/No.3 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet kicked off the HopeLine Drive this month to raise funds and awareness for domestic violence prevention by donating the first cell phone. Joining HopeLine to meet its goal to collect one million no-longer used cell phones and accessories are Verizon, IndyCar, and Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Representing IndyCar was Hulman & Company CEO Mark Miles; Castroneves and other Verizon executives; and Doug Boles, President Indianapolis Motor Speedway. A check for $50,000 was presented to the Indiana Coalition Against Domestic Violence.