GRAHAM RAHAL (No. 38 Service Central Honda): "Again, I thought we had a great day with the Service Central boys. We're learning a lot and really trying to keep ourselves focused on what our run-plan is and just doing the kind of laps that we feel we need to every day. Today was a pretty limited day, but that was the plan and we'll be out there doing more later."
JEAN ALESI (No. 64 Lotus-FP Journe-Fan Force United Lotus): "Right now, I feel very unsafe, being quite slow in the middle of the track. So I am quite concerned for my fellow drivers if we are not able to get the speed that we need. I am flat out, and I have reached 205 as the maximum that I can see. So it is not a comfortable position right now."
JR HILDEBRAND (No. 4 National Guard Panther Racing Chevrolet): "It's good to get out there again today. We didn't have as organized of a race run as we wanted there at the end of the day because we kept having cars come out right in front of us in the pits. It's good to be able to continue to get a feel for the National Guard Chevy, and there was a couple of specific things that we were looking to try to address today that we got a feel for in that run. In the end, we're banking tires, and we'll be able to do some more running later in the week."
ALEX TAGLIANI (No. 98 Team Barracuda-BHA Honda): "It's the first practice day where we had some pretty decent laps and made some really good improvement on the car: running in traffic, stability, race running. It was quite nice. The Team Barracuda-BHA crew did a good job. We're also getting all caught up with the Honda people, and everything is running smoothly. It was a good day. Finishing a day like this at the Speedway with a smile and with a car that we feel we can race is always very nice. I'm very pleased with the No. 98 Team Barracuda-BHA car. We're going to start to come up with some big guns, and we'll see what we can do."
TOWNSEND BELL (No. 99 BraunAbility-Schmidt Pelfrey Motorsports Honda): "I haven't been two-wide yet. We're just trying to work our way up to it and use all of our experience the best we can. I was really happy with today. I had a lot of things we wanted to test, and we accomplished those today. We crossed a lot of things off our list, so I feel like we're on top of things. The first two days, I felt like we were just catching up with the car being totally new for me and the engineers. I feel like we're caught up now, and we can start applying everything we've learned to a more refined package moving forward."
SIMON PAGENAUD (No. 77 Schmidt Hamilton HP Motorsports Honda): "I think the god of speeds are helping me out this year because we are getting so much running since there is no rain. It's great. We're actually not running that much. In fact, I was so sad to get out of the car today. I was having so much fun. The track is not slippery when you get the car nicely dialed in. It's not slippery; you just have to feel the air on the car and feel what the car is telling you through your butt. You really feel if you get understeer or oversteer, and you really have to learn how to manage that from the car with the steering wheel and your foot. It's a really fine line. You want to be neutral by yourself and safe in traffic. But traffic usually brings you understeer. So it's difficult to find the right balance. There is a lot more thinking and processing than on a road course."
SIMONA DE SILVESTRO (No. 78 Nuclear Clean Air Energy Lotus HVM Racing Lotus): "We ran more laps today, and I think the car is getting there. But we're just really struggling on the engine side, and that makes it difficult to drive. When you do only 200 mph, you don't have enough downforce, which makes it a little bit trickier. The good thing on the team side is that everybody is being patient and really working through the things. That's what we have to do this month - just be really patient about it and try to improve every time we go out there. Hopefully for qualifying and the race we'll have something that's race-able."
BRYAN CLAUSON (No. 39 Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing/RW Honda): "It's such a different feel when you get in a pack here at Indy. It's going to be interesting to see how you can manage a car that's good running by itself as well as a car that can handle the traffic. Every day in traffic we get a lot better. Completing passes has proved to be pretty difficult so far. We're going to focus on getting in heavy traffic over the next few days and continue to learn how to manage the car in those situations. It's going to come down to who's going to be able to keep the most pedal down on the car through traffic. The tow is so big here that speed behind other cars isn't that difficult to find if you can keep the throttle in it. Finding balance as you pull out of the draft is kind of like hitting a wall, so it's hard to complete the pass. We'll keep finding out what we can learn from running in the pack before we switch over to qualifying mode for Fast Friday."
ED CARPENTER (No. 20 Fuzzy's Vodka/Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet): "We tried a lot of things today with the wind. We are still missing something with the new car. Obviously, we are not where we want to be just yet. We have been making progress each day. It is getting to the point where we have some time to get a good setup, but we are getting closer to the qualifying weekend. So time is precious. We are not discouraged with the progress we are making, but I'm a little disappointed we haven't made the big jump up the time sheets yet. We have had some decent days in practice but just not that one day that jumps us up to a proper speed. We seem pretty good in three of the four corners, and we need to work on the one turn that hurts us. We will keep working on it and find that sweet spot with this new car."
DARIO FRANCHITTI (No. 50 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Honda): "We worked on a lot of stuff. It was another productive day for the Target team, just finding our way around this car and just finding out what it likes. We ran in traffic for the first time, and it actually went pretty well. I caught a nice balance. We're just trying to zero in on what we need for the '500.' That's where we are. I think we learned some big stuff today. We put together what Scott (Dixon) learned, and Charlie (Kimball) and Graham (Rahal). Hopefully, we'll come out tomorrow even stronger."
SCOTT DIXON (No. 9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Honda): "It was OK. We really struggled for speed early on. We seem to have days where we roll off, and the car is a mile an hour or 2 mile an hour slower. And that was kind of how the morning started. We made a few changes and got the car a bit better. In the long run, we just probably had too much downforce on it. It was OK. Comfortable to drive but just not the quickest out there. Generally, you can mark yourself by how other people are running at the same time. I wouldn't say we were great. We've got a bit of work to do and definitely got to find some speed." (How hard is it to sort out the new car?): "It's not a whole lot different. You're just not sure whether you're in the box. You could be out of it. Because it's a new car you've got lots of things to sort of mess with. But it's kind of hard to tell. I think it's challenging, but it's the first year, which makes it exciting, too."
TAKUMA SATO (No. 15 Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing Honda): "It was a little bit windy today, which makes the car a little unstable, but it was quite good because we needed to make our car more stable. The wind was tricky, quite gusty. But I think we are happy with the balance. We worked on our general setup and will now go scan the aero map on it to record the data. My long run was cut short today by the red flag, and it was a little bit of a shame that we didn't run in traffic as much as we wanted, but hopefully we will do so tomorrow. I think it will be quite exciting to start some qualifying setup work tomorrow."
MICHEL JOURDAIN JR. (No. 30 Office Depot/RLL Racing Honda): "The day was very good. We made very good progress. The first couple of days were about getting me comfortable in the car and with the setup. Finally, Monday we were very good by ourselves, and yesterday was about running in traffic. It felt good yesterday, but we were not 100 percent. And today I felt really good in the last session. We ran a full tank of fuel and ran it out. I was running in the middle of the group, and the car felt good. It was much fun out there; it was fantastic. Tomorrow we will run a little of both race setup and qualifying setup. We know we didn't have a lot of time to work on the ultimate qualifying setup, so we know we are not going to fight for the top nine or top 15, so we just want to get a decent qualifying setup where we run good. Then on Friday, of course, we will work on our qualifying setup."
MIKE CONWAY (No. 14 ABC Supply Co./A.J. Foyt Racing Honda): "We haven't done any race setups, and there are a lot of teams doing a bit of that today. So we have to get out there and do some, but at same time, we have to find some speed and know what our speed is for a qualifying run. We have a lot to get through tomorrow. Friday we get a bit of a power boost, so that could change things again. So tomorrow will be our best shot to get some race setups done."
WADE CUNNINGHAM (No. 41 ECat/ABC Supply Honda): "We made some gains today. We got an idea of where we need to be for race downforce, and on the back of that you figure out what gearing you need and the kind of balance, as well. We're headed in the right direction that way. We improved the car mechanically in terms of feel and overall speed. I'd jumped up the charts, and the time was really a function of being able to use a bit of gear for the draft. Hopefully making these sort of gains a few more positions tomorrow and a few more the next day, and we'll be chasing the back end of the top 10, which is our target. A relatively productive day, no major issues. And like I said earlier, if my rookie day was the worst day we have this month, we'll have a good time."
RYAN BRISCOE (No. 2 IZOD Team Penske Chevrolet): "Pretty slow day for the No. 2 IZOD car. We just did one run. After we made some changes and did a baseline run, the car felt pretty good. For now, we are conserving tires, but we will get back into it tomorrow and continue to improve."
WILL POWER (No. 12 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet): "We didn't run our Verizon car too much today. We did a little work on it. Just tried a couple things, getting ready for the next couple of days. It's been good having such great weather, as it allows us plenty of time to work through our process."
HELIO CASTRONEVES (No. 3 Shell V-Power Pennzoil Ultra Team Penske Chevrolet): "We started a little late, but the No. 3 Shell Pennzoil is looking good. We tried to manage the tires to make sure we have enough for when it really matters, which is Saturday. Right now, we are moving in the right direction. Chevy, Ilmor and everybody are working together so we can have a quality engine and ultimately a good race car."
ORIOL SERVIA (No. 22 Panther/Dreyer & Reinbold Racing Chevrolet): "We tried several things, and we discovered some other ones. I think that we have come up with something that is going to help me a lot for the race. We just don't know yet if it's something that's going to be good for qualifying or not, but we still have tomorrow to decide. I'm happy because we really found something that I think will make the race car the way we need it to be fighting for the win next Sunday."
RYAN HUNTER-REAY (No. 28 Team DHL SunDrop Citrus Soda Chevrolet): "I think it was a good day. We just concentrated on making our car look better and get in traffic and race trim, and obviously some of the, most of these speeds come from traffic tows. We were all on tows on some point. It just depends on how and when it happens, but most importantly we didn't try and set any up, we just got to work in traffic. The Andretti Autosport cars have been working really well, so we've been making progress, and as a team we've been working really well together. It's been a cohesive unit, and it's pretty impressive to see how things have been operating so far. So now the goal is going and qualifying to keep that teamwork going. Get to the weekend, and I think we're most of the way there, or part of the way there on some pretty good race cars. So that's most important for us."
JAMES HINCHCLIFFE (No. 27 Team GoDaddy.com Chevrolet): "We tried to eliminate tow laps, so you get a little of a bit better sense of not just ourselves but what everybody's doing. But ultimately between our cars and the timing data that we can get, there's so much data to pore through, and you know on top of that we're dealing with the new cars, so we're learning it off a lot more than we have the last couple years."
TONY KANAAN (No. 11 GEICO/Mouser Electronics KVRT Chevrolet): "We continued to work on our race setup today and finding out how the car reacts when it is in traffic. It was an uneventful day, and hopefully tomorrow will be the same."
RUBENS BARRICHELLO (No. 8 BMC/Embrase KV Racing Technology Chevrolet): "Today we ran a lot of miles. I was able to experience how the car would feel in a race from when it is full of fuel to almost empty. We made some progress with some of the changes today, and hopefully we are going in the right direction."
E.J. VISO (No. 5 CITGO/PDVSA KV Racing Technology Chevrolet): "It was another day of working on the race setup. It definitely hasn't been fun so far. It was a tough day. One of our big priorities is to develop a fast car for qualifying and a safe and fast car for the race, which is what we have been trying to achieve. We tried a bunch of things that didn't really work out. However, by the end of the day, things took a turn to the positive side, and we will keep working on that tomorrow."
MARCO ANDRETTI (No. 26 Team RC Cola Chevrolet): "We are still making gains on the race setup. The RC Cola guys have all been working great together as a team to really develop a good race car. I would say we are a change or two away from being the one to beat on May 27th. We have some more work to do when it comes to the car's speed on its own. Once we get the car right, it won't matter where we start."
SEBASTIAN SAAVEDRA (No. 17 Team AFS Racing Chevrolet): "Today was a very good day for the Andretti Autosport cars and the AFS Racing team. It was a really positive day because we are working well together as a team. We have a very consistent car and it is all a learning process. I am enjoying it very much, so we will see where it takes us tomorrow."
ANA BEATRIZ (No. 25 Team Ipiranga Chevrolet): "I think we made a lot of good progress today when it comes to the race setup. We were able to realize some of the good and not so good aspects of the car. I am looking forward to even more improvements for the Ipiranga team. Tomorrow we will probably focus more on qualifying. We are getting one step closer each day to having the car we need for race day."
A total of 35 cars are at the Speedway, with 31 passing technical inspection, with two pending. Thirty-one drivers have been on the track to date and turned 1,632 laps today and 6,264 laps since Opening Day this month. Rubens Barrichello turned 114 laps today, most of any driver. There were five cautions for a total of 41 minutes today.
THURSDAY'S SCHEDULE (all times local):
8 a.m. Garages open8-9:30 a.m. Rookie Orientation ProgramNoon-6 p.m. Indianapolis 500 practice
The next IZOD IndyCar Series race is the Indianapolis 500 Mile on May 27 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The race will be televised by ABC at 11a.m. (ET) and broadcast by the IMS Radio Network on SiriusXM (XM 94 and Sirius 212). The next Firestone Indy Lights race is the Firestone Freedom 100 on May 25 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The race will be televised live by NBC Sports Network at Noon (ET) and broadcast by the IMS Radio Network.