Sebring Day 1: Kanaan fastest
Andretti Green Racing drivers swept the top three spots during the first half day of an Open Test at Sebring International Raceway. Nine IndyCar Series drivers tested during the afternoon and will receive a full day of testing on March 4. Nine other drivers will test the afternoon of March 5 and all day on March 6.
Tony Kanaan turned the fastest lap on the circuit's 1.7-mile, 11-turn course at 53.5174 seconds, 112.337 mph. Teammates Marco Andretti and Hideki Mutoh were second and third, respectively, while Danica Patrick was edged out of fourth late in the day by Rahal Letterman Racing's Ryan Hunter-Reay.
A.J. Foyt IV, Jay Howard, Ed Carpenter and Marty Roth rounded out the time sheet.
Sebring International Raceway is located on the former Hendricks Field, a United States Army Air Forces Combat Crew Training facility that was constructed in 1940. Pilots used Hendricks Field to train on B-17s throughout World War II.
The field was deactivated on Dec. 31, 1945 and given to the city of Sebring in 1946. The first race was staged at the facility in 1950.
INDYCAR SERIES QUOTES:
TONY KANAAN (No. 11 Andretti Green Racing): "We're testing a lot of things. We're trying big, big things that we did some simulation over the winter and thought were better. Changing big things in the car, that takes an hour, sometimes two hours. This is the time to do it, because we won't have time when we get to St. Pete. It's the last two days, now it's down to one day, before the season starts and before we go to St. Pete. I would say it's going well."
MARCO ANDRETTI (No. 26 Andretti Green Racing): "(Today was) not as great as we would like. We still have to work on gaining overall mechanical grip. However, we're doing a true test. If we can find some mechanical grip and balance tomorrow, I think we're going to be happy."
RHR: “We’re not tuning our car to the Sebring track like some of these teams are, but yet we’ve still come out and put up a pretty good time, which shows us that things are going well,” Hunter-Reay said. “We’re being disciplined in our approach and working on things specific to St. Pete and those should pay off for us there.”
Bobby Rahal: “It was a good day, we chunked through most of our test program, worked on some macro changes on the first day and will go from there,” said team co-owner Bobby Rahal. “It’s our first day with the new paddle shifters and it seemed to work pretty well. We got through what we needed to do, and it leaves us plenty of room to build on it tomorrow.”
Driver Diff Best Time Best Speed Total Laps
1 Tony Kanaan (11) ... 53.5174 112.337 56
2 Marco Andretti (26) 0.3204 53.8378 111.669 57
3 Hideki Mutoh (27) 0.3542 53.8716 111.599 56
4 Ryan Hunter-Reay (17) 0.6706 54.1880 110.947 50
5 Danica Patrick (7) 0.9750 54.4924 110.327 49
6 A.J. Foyt IV (2) 1.0139 54.5313 110.249 83
7 Jay Howard (24) 1.1005 54.6179 110.074 61
8 Ed Carpenter (20) 1.8712 55.3886 108.542 74
9 Marty Roth (25) 2.7807 56.2981 106.789 68