IndyCar – St. Petersburg Practice 3

Despite a rocky start, the Timing and Scoring on finally came online, although the video was more of a slideshow than smooth video. Here’s hoping that the online coverage improves over the season. The ontrack action, however was pretty dicey. Ryan Hunter-Reay narrowly avoided being hit by Duno, Viso, and apparently just about everyone else on the grid.

EJ Viso ready for practice. - Photo by Dan Helrigel,
EJ Viso ready for practice. - Photo by Dan Helrigel,
Once again, Will Power showed that he has the measure of this circuit, although the other drivers have caught up a bit. The surprise performer this session was EJ Viso rising as high as 2nd quickest midway through the session throwing down a 1:02.3614 sec. Graham Rahal, who had done so well in FP1 and FP2 yesterday, struggled this morning posting times a full second behind his Friday best. Both DRR drivers, Justin Wilson and Mike Conway found their way into the top ten showing that the old DRR what we’ve seen in past seasons bringing up the rear is dead and gone. I’m very excited and optimistic for the team this year. This might be the event where we see them find the top five, and perhaps the podium. …ok the podium might be a stretch, but don’t look for them at the back of the grid. What you WILL see at the rear is Milka Duno. Her times have been abysmal all weekend, and today’s final practice session was no exception. To give you an idea of how far off Milka is, Conor Daly set the pole for the Star Mazda race today with a lap time of 1:10.352 sec. Milka’s best time is 1:09.9728 sec, only 0.48 sec quicker in a car with double the horsepower, and she’s a full seven seconds behind Power’s time. I won’t be surprised if Barnhart requests that she sit out this race. Hideki Mutoh after showing some decent speed in his new Newman-Haas-Lanigan ride, crashed hard into the Turn 9 wall, causing serious damage to the car, and its going to be tough for the team to make this afternoon’s qualifying sessions.

So with the practice sessions complete, we’re set for qualirfication this afternoon. Here’s my picks, and I think we can all agree on who’ll take the pole:

  1. Will Power
  2. Tony Kanaan
  3. Justin Wilson
  4. Ryan Briscoe
  5. Scott Dixon
  6. Dario Franchitti

That’s my expected Firestone Fast 6. For a couple of dark horses to watch, keep an eye on EJ Viso, Ryan Hunter-Reay, Mike Conway, and Marco Andretti.

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4 Thoughts to “IndyCar – St. Petersburg Practice 3

  1. Remmy14

    Milka is an embarrassment. She is way off the pace. She spun out on the lap. She has never been competitive in her 3 years in the league. The only reason she is out there is because she brought along her own sponsorship from Citgo. She needs to get off the track before she kills somebody.

  2. I felt pretty bad this morning when i watched the start…your assessment on her talent level is spot on, but I have to say she is very fan friendly and more than willing to go out of her way to sign autographs and such, granted that may be because she is on borrowed time but regardless, she does do well outside of the car. Thanks for stopping by and posting Remmy, I am sure Mike or Doug will have a great post race wrap-up and we look forward to more comments!

    P.S. That is why I jumped onto the Simona de Silvestro camp…she looks better and drives better!

  3. Remmy14

    Shaun I couldn’t agree more. I hate to say it, but de Silvestro is a much better driver, but doesn’t get the exposure that the “prettier” girls do. Danica is a talented driver, but let’s be honest: she has only won once (and it’s debatable that Helio let her). Sarah Fisher is the most talented female driver out there, but can’t get a full time ride. I see Sarah race at Indianapolis from turn 4 every year, and she is a much better driver than DP. I would love to see her gamble with Graham Rahal pay off, and hopefully she can secure full time sponsorship.

  4. I don’t get it either Remmy….de Silvestro is attractive when she cleans up and she is European…both pluses in my book! 🙂
    I think that DP will continue to ride her modern day pioneer role until she fully transitions into Nascar or whatever. It really sucks that she is the “face” of the series. I hope IZOD can get RHR as the face of American drivers winning races again (not to say DP is a winner).

    I agree with you on Sarah too. I think she is very talented on the track and off. I have always been impressed with her dual hat job she has done and I think she should get more praise than DP. Sarah actually races and does ok and RUNS HER TEAM! All DP does is walk around and look good and I even find that point debatable. Graham ran a good race so I hope something can come of it. Before I forget, welcome to the site by the way! Great to have you on hear and commenting on the IndyCar front. We all here at the paddock appreciate it and hope to see you commenting in the future. I think the IndyCar series as a whole has gained some points these first two races and we shall see how much more we can fix with a seemingly competent guy running the show.

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