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Hot, Slippery Conditions Make it Tough at Toronto
Author: Tom Blattler
With air temperatures in the 90s F and track surface over 125 degrees F, the traction proved tough for the entire 25-car field including the No. 20 Fuzzy’s Ultra Premium Vodka Chevrolet of Ed Carpenter.
Carpenter started the day on the “green” track by running near the top-ten with a time of one minute, 2.908 seconds. He improved to 62.221 second later in the 70-minute session. However, as his setup developed, the Indianapolis racer felt good about his car with new Firestone tires. Unfortunately, Carpenter ran into some traffic late in the session and placed 22nd in the morning practice.
Carpenter felt the increased temperatures hindered his Fuzzy’s Vodka machine and many other cars in the afternoon practice with his best time of 62.189 seconds, 24th in the speed charts. Dario Franchitti was quickest in both practices Friday with a best 60.278.
Carpenter recorded the second most of laps of the day at 45. IndyCar Series rookie Rubens Barrichello notched 47 circuits Friday at Toronto.
The IZOD IndyCar Series teams might be thrown a curveball in the weather Saturday as rain is predicted as well as cooler temperatures (some 10 degrees F cooler) when practice opens at 9:45 a.m. EDT. Qualifying for the 26th edition of the battle in the Toronto streets is scheduled for 1:05 p.m. EDT.
The Honda Indy Toronto will begin Sunday at 1 p.m. EDT with ABC-TV’s live telecast set for 12:30 p.m.
“Our day started out pretty promising in the first session,” said Carpenter, the series’ only team owner/driver. “We just got sticker Firestones on the car at the end and we felt good about the setup. But I got caught in traffic. We didn’t get a chance to improve like we wanted. We tried some things in the second practice that we thought would be good, but the track changed on us. We didn’t have a good car. I was happy how we started the day and disappointed how we finished the day. Tomorrow could be a lot different with the weather too. It may rain and may not be this hot too. That throws out everything we worked on today. We have to do a reset and figure out what will work best for Saturday.”
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