Ricky Stenhouse Jr. drove his Fastenal Ford to a fifth-place finish in the Monster Energy Open Saturday night at Charlotte Motor Speedway.
“Our Fastenal Ford was strong on the long runs,” Stenhouse said. “We struggled on restarts so the late cautions during the stages set us back. I think we learned some things for next weekend’s 600, so we’ll be read to go when points will be on the line.”
The two-time Xfinity champion rolled off in the 15th position for the three stage, 50-lap race. With a combination of strength and finesse, Stenhouse powered his way into the top 10 in only two laps. When the caution flag waved on lap 16, Stenhouse was scored in the seventh position reporting his Ford was a tad tight.
As most of the field took the opportunity to pit, Stenhouse brought his Ford to pit-road for four tires and fuel. With the first stage going into overtime, Stenhouse Jr. lined up in the eighth position for the two-lap shootout but fell a few positions to take the first green checkered in the 11th position.
After staying out during the stage break, the Olive Branch, Miss. native lined up in the seventh position for the next 20-lap stage. The caution was displayed with two laps remaining in the stage two allowing Stenhouse to bring his Fastenal Ford to pit-road for multiple changes in hopes to help his tight-handling condition.
Once again, the second stage went into overtime with a two-lap shootout. Stenhouse Jr. lined up in the 11th position and quickly maneuvered his way through the field picking up four positions before the second green-checkered flag waved.
On the final 10-lap segment, the two-time MENCS winner lined up in the fifth position but newer tires prevailed forcing Stenhouse to settle with a fifth-place finish in the Monster Energy Open.
Next up for Stenhouse and the No. 17 team is the Coca-Cola 600 at Charlotte Motor Speedway on Sunday, May 26. Race coverage begins at 6 p.m ET on FOX. Coverage can also be heard on PRN and SIRIUSXM radio channel 90.
Jake Little and his uncle Ryan are active members in the Illinois National Guard and the US Army. On Armed Forces Night, Jake Little reigned supreme in the Decatur Building Trades Pro Late Model Feature at Macon Speedway. Little missed out on a possible championship in 2018 when he was sent overseas for active duty in August into September and missed many of the final races to take away his points lead. Ryan Little doesn't have much of a chance to race enough for a championship because of his active status which has forced him away from the racecar for the majority of the 2019 season.
Both Little drivers started in the front row and looked prepared to take the race but Jake Little knew he had to get to the high side and run away from the group. He was able to do just that. Dakota Ewing, starting from the 13th position due to a DNF in his heat race due to a near rollover and a flat tire, broke through the pack and challenged for a top five finish. Ewing would finish third in the 20-lap feature and nearly finish in the runner-up spot.
Tommy Sheppard, Jr. won the feature in the BillingsleyRewards.com Modifieds. The race was his for the entire event but a late caution set up a bumper-to-bumper restart with Rodney Standerfer behind Sheppard. Standerfer pulled close-to-even with the leader but couldn't find a way to make the pass and Sheppard took another checkered flag.
Wes O'Dell was sharp in the Sportsman class. After winning his heat by a half lap ahead of the second place finisher, O'Dell started on the front row outside position and blasted off ahead of Scott Landers and the rest of the cars. The former champion looked dominate and made an impact in the Sportsman points standings as points leader Dennis Vandermeersch was not part of the 12-car field.
Terry Reed took another Archer's Alley Street Stocks feature win. Two weeks ago, his brother Gene Reed won the feature and Terry took the Opening Night checkered flag. It was a Reed Win-Place-Show as Gene took second place and Joe Reed finished third in the field.
Tim Hancock was on his A-game once again as he took control of his heat race and then ran off with the Neal Tire & Auto Pro Modified feature. For Hancock, he has taken the checkered flag in three of the first four events during the 2019 season.
Wrapping up the show Saturday night was the Hornets. A new winner took to the winner's circle in Anthony Sunshine, a driver from St. Louis, Missouri. Sunshine's home track has been flooded out due to much of the spring rains so a trip north to Macon gave him plenty of competition and a chance to race. Brady Reed, starting tenth due to winning the last Hornet feature, rushed towards the front and challenged for the top spot. Another Missouri driver, Joshua Hawkins from Imperial, finished in third during his first trip to the track in 2019.
Among the six racing classes was another solid night of cars in the pit area, 90, so Macon Speedway brings forth quality in numbers during all the classes so far during the first four weeks of the season. Macon Speedway takes a rare scheduled Saturday night off to prep for a monster week at the track beginning on Memorial Day Monday. The annual event, Miller Lite Beer Twin 50s, is on tap for the Decatur Building Trade Pro Late Models and the Neal Tire & Auto Pro Modifieds. A full stock car racing show is scheduled. Thursday, May 30th, is the second-ever 95Q Up On The Wheel Modified 100--a 100-lap feature for the BillingsleyRewards.com Modifieds plus the MOWA Sprints. The week is capped off with a fan-favorite, the Five Buck Night. General admission is just $5 plus it will be the kids bicycle giveaway night along with a full program.
Decatur Building Trades Pro Late Models--1. Jake Little (Springfield), 2. Ryan Little (Springfield), 3. Dakota Ewing (Warrensburg), 4. Logan Moody (Catlin), 5. Donny Koehler (Macon), 6. Colby Sheppard (Williamsville), 7. Kyle Van Dorn (New Berlin), 8. Roy Beal (Springfield), 9. Brianna Sheppard (New Berlin), 10. Blake Damery (Blue Mound)
BillingsleyRewards.com Modifieds--1. Tommy Sheppard, Jr. (New Berlin), 2. Rodney Standerfer (Summerfield), 3. TIm Hancock (Mt. Olive), 4. Steve Meyer, Jr. (Staunton), 5. Michael Rauch (Decatur), 6. Jared Thomas (Edinburg), 7. Guy Taylor (Springfield), 8. Katie Lord (Zionsville, IN), 9. Jordan Warren (Medora), 10. Alan Crowder (Elwin)
Sportsman--1. Wes O'Dell (Springfield), 2. Scott Landers (Taylorville), 3. Mitch Ringler (Taylorville), 4. Tim Bedinger (Taylorville), 5. Connor Klay (Stonington), 6. Rick Roedel (Shelbyville), 7. Joel Irvin (Harristown), 8. Stefan Bedinger (Taylorville), 9. Bill Berghaus (Chapin), 10. Terry Myers (Buffalo)
Archer's Alley Street Stocks--1. Terry Reed (Cerro Gordo), 2. Gene Reed (Hammond), 3. Joe Reed (Decatur), 4. Shawn Ziemer (Boody), 5. Larry Russell, Jr. (Decatur), 6. Joshua Beal (Springfield), 7. Fredie Thomas (Macon), 8. Jonathon Hall (Harristown), 9. Jerit Murphy (Lodge), 10. Brian Dasenbrock (Decatur)
Neal Tire & Auto Pro Modifieds--1. Tim Hancock (Mt. Olive), 2. Nick Justice (Decatur), 3. Rob Timmons (Centralia), 4. Tommy Sheppard, Jr. (New Berlin), 5. Billy Nail (Decatur), 6. Zack Bunning (Decatur), 7. Tim Riech (Petersburg), 8. Nathan Lynch (Hillsboro), 9. Kevin Rench (Hillsboro), 10. Billy Adams (Shelbyville)
Hornets--1. Anthony Sunshine (St. Louis, MO), 2. Brady Reed (Decatur), 3. Joshua Hawkins (Imperial, MO), 4. Dallas Strauch (East Peoria), 5. Carter Dart (Springfield), 6. John Lewis (Cerro Gordo), 7. Cook Crawford (Lincoln), 8. Delane Orr (Springfield), 9. Debbie Seitz (Decatur), 10. Michael Abbott (Taylorville)
Macon Speedway PR
The depth in the NASCAR Whelen All American Series Late Model Stock Car Division at South Boston Speedway has been getting better with each week of the 2019 season.
It took another step in that direction Saturday night when Trey Crews of Halifax, Virginia scored his first career NASCAR Whelen All American Series Late Model Stock Car race win in the Bojangles NASCAR Late Model 100.
Crews, the outside pole starter, held off former NASCAR national champion Lee Pulliam of Alton, Virginia and Nick Sanchez of Miami, Florida in a 37-lap sprint to the finish following the race's final caution period to capture his first win.
His margin of victory was .748-second.
The Halifax, Virginia resident took the lead at the outset, and held a lead of almost a quarter of a lap over Pulliam and Sanchez when a caution flag flew for an incident on lap 63. Pulliam and Sanchez gave Crews a hard run for a handful of laps after the restart, but Crews was able to gradually pull away as Pulliam and Sanchez engaged in a close side-by-side battle for second place, a battle Pulliam won by about two car lengths.
Austin Thaxton of South Boston, Virginia finished fourth and Mike Looney of Catawba, Virginia rounded out the top five finishers in the race that took just over an hour to complete.
Moss, Willis Split Limited Sportsman Division Twinbill
Daniel Moss of Danville, Virginia and Danny Willis Jr. of South Boston, Virginia split wins in Saturday night's twin 25-lap Limited Sportsman Division races. The wins marked the second victory of the season for both drivers.
Moss took the lead from Willis with three laps to go as they battled on the restart following the last of the race's three caution periods and held off Willis to win by .415-second. Drew Dawson of Nathalie, Virginia finished third with Jason Myers of Hurt, Virginia and Brent Younger of South Boston, Virginia rounding out the top five finishers.
Willis started on the outside of the front row in the second race, took the lead from Myers on the second lap and drove to a .685-second win over Moss, who got around Myers to take second place on the next-to-last lap of the race.
Eric Winslow of Pelham, North Carolina and Dawson rounded out the top five finishers in the nightcap.
Crews, Pickrel Pick Up Wins In Pure Stock Division Twins
Nathan Crews of Long Island, Virginia and Jordan Pickrel of Keeling, Virginia split wins in Saturday night's twin 15-lap Budweiser Pure Stock Division races.
Crews fended off Pickrel in a close battle in the first of the pair of 15-lap races, edging Pickrel by a slim margin of .338-second. Scott Phillips of Halifax, Virginia finished third, with Bruce Mayo of Halifax, Virginia and Randy Hupp of Halifax, Virginia.
Crews and PickreL exchanged the lead three times in the opening race, with Crews taking the lead for good with eight laps to go to capture his third win of the season.
Pickrel started on the front row and led the entire way in the second race that was marred by a multi-car incident on the opening lap. Justin Dawson's car was destroyed and Hupp's car was totaled when it overturned on the frontstretch. Neither driver was injured.
A good jump on the start allowed Pickrel to pull away from the field, and with no challenges, he sped to a three-second win over runner-up Jarrett Milam of Keeling, Virginia. Mayo finished third with Kenny Mills Jr. of Alton, Virginia and Crews running out the top five finishers.
Dawson Takes Hornets Division Win
Josh Dawson of Halifax, Virginia scored his first career win Saturday night in the 15-lap Budweiser Hornets Division race. With the victory, Dawson became the third different winner in the four races run in the division thus far this season.
Aaron Cash of South Boston, Virginia finished second with Micah Pacifico of Providence, North Carolina, Steven Layne of Nathalie, Virginia and Kevin Currin of Chase City, Virginia completing the top five finishers.
Next Race At South Boston Speedway
NASCAR racing action returns to South Boston Speedway on Saturday night, June 1 with the 7 p.m. Running of the NASCAR Late Model Twin 75s racing program.
The six race program will be headlined by twin 75-lap races for the NASCAR Whelen All American Series Late Model Stock Car Division competitors. Also on tap are a 50-lap Limited Sportsman Division race, a 30-lap race for the Budweiser Pure Stock Division, a 15-lap race for the Budweiser Hornets Division and a 25-lap race for the regional touring Southern Ground Pounders series.
Registration and pit gates open at 2 p.m. Practice goes from 4 p.m. to 5 p.m. Grandstand gates open at 5:30 p.m. and qualifying starts at 6 p.m. The first race gets the green flag at 7 p.m.
Admission is $10 for adults with children ages 12 and under admitted free with a paying adult.
For additional information about the NASCAR Late Model Twin 75s racing program or any other events at South Boston Speedway please visit the speedway's website at www.southboston speedway.com or telephone the speedway at 434-572-4947 or 1-877-440-1540.
A dominating run for Sam Hafertepe, Jr. to close the two day appearance in Michigan, the three-time and defending champion of the Lucas Oil American Sprint Car Series presented by the MAVTV Motorsports Network was untouchable at I-96 Speedway; laying down performance that saw the Townline Variety No. 15h winning Saturday's A-Feature by 6.105 seconds.
Saturday at Bowman Gray Stadium was a dream night for Tim Brown and his team.
The night started off strongly for Brown after he turned the fastest time in qualifying sessions for the Brad’s Golf Cars Modified Series – his second pole out of two events this season at the Madhouse. Jonathan Brown of Winston-Salem started beside him on the outside front row, and defending champ Burt Myers of Walnut Cove started in third.
Tim Brown led the way the entire time, although Jonathan Brown was delivering some stiff shots to his bumper. “My car wasn’t very good. I was extremely loose, so I couldn’t get in the corner. He could get in the corner so he could give me a shot - but once I got it settled down and got back in the gas I could get a little margin,” said Tim Brown. “I’m a veteran over here. I’ve been doing this a long time.”
The #83 of Brown took the checkered – his 90th career Modified win at the Stadium.
The “Madhouse Scramble” put Danny Propst of Monroe on the pole for the start of the second race. Carson Ware of Greensboro started in second. It was the first time Ware had competed at the Stadium and the first time he had ever raced in a Modified.
When the green fell, Propst lost control and Ware took over the lead. Ware immediately had to fend off Frank Fleming of Mount Airy. A few laps later, Burt Myers was on Ware’s bumper looking to pass. But the first-time driver held off both racing veterans to grab his first victory on his first night at the Stadium.
The win made him the 136th driver to win a featured event at Bowman Gray Stadium and added his name to the legendary list of winners such as Richard Petty, Bobby Allison, Glen Wood, and Junior Johnson.
“Honestly the experience is unbelievable – to be able to run here not only with Tim and some of the greatest over here,” said Ware. “I’m still in shock. I can’t believe it. I threw up on the front stretch I was so nervous.”
Ware had to learn quickly to deal with the aggression on his rear bumper that the Stadium is known for. “It wasn’t something I’m really used to,” said Ware. “It was a lot on my plate, but I handled it well. We took care of it and got the win tonight.”
The victory for Ware capped off an incredible night for Tim Brown and his team – it was Brown who secured the ride for Ware. “Me and Carson’s father go way back,” said Tim Brown. “We put the deal together this week – the kid comes over here and is super talented.”
“This race team – we’ve worked hard. Burt has kicked out butts in the points for the last few years. We’ve regrouped, built new cars, and we’re trying hard to win a championship this year,” said Brown. “Then to bring Carson over here for the first time ever in a Modified and the first time ever at the Stadium – and to pull off a win, it’s a special night.”
In the McDowell Heating & Air Sportsman Series, Amber Lynn of Walkertown took her first victory ever in a Sportsman car. She held off Justin Taylor of King, who returned to fly through the field in the second race and claim the win then.
Jacob Creed of Dobson won for the Law Offices of John Barrow Street Stock Series. Grayson Keaton of Mocksville and A.J. Sanders of Mocksville each brought home a win in the Q104.1 Stadium Stock Series.
BGS Racing PR
Brett “The Threat” Kressley, behind the wheel of the Kressley family owned No. 19K, scored his second 30-lap TP Trailers NASCAR 358 Modified feature victory on Saturday night at Grandview Speedway in a down-to-the wire battle with Skyler Sheriff, the leader since the beginning of the event. The pair had several laps of paint swapping battles, but with one lap to go the Orefield based lead foot muscled the lead away from Sheriff and went on to chalk up the win.
Brian Hirthler, who’s regular No. 4 Star was waiting for repairs, borrowed his Brother Kevin’s backup No. 117X with a crate engine in it and won his first TP Truck Equipment 25-lap Sportsman NASCAR feature of the season. It was the same car Kevin won the opening race in. Brian received an extra $100 from the track for being the highest finishing driver with a crate engine.
Tim Buckwalter, doing double duty driving Modifieds and Sprints piloted the GEI-owned No. 5G to victory in the 25-lap Rapid Tire USAC East Coast Sprint Cars feature. It was just the second time for Buckwalter in the car.
Providing all feature winners met the necessary requirements, the Modified and Sportsman feature winner got monetary awards from TP Trailers and a certificate from VP Fuels for product awards. Sheriff and Mohr won the Dan’s Deli ½-way hoagie award.
More than 100 cars took part in the three division show.
Modified action saw Sheriff motor ahead of rookie Steve Wilson, Ron Seltmann Jr., Ron Kline and Mike Laise at the start of the race to set the pace for the 31-car starting grid that included provisionals taken by Craig Whitmoyer, Jeff Strunk and Craig Von Dohren.
The yellow was out when Bob Trapper Jr. slowed in the fourth turn with ten laps completed. Sheriff was still the leader on the restart, but now Seltmann Jr. was second and when he put in a bid for the lead he was taken high into the first turn marbles. He stayed out of the wall, but fell back several positions.
By the 13th lap restart needed when Buckwalter slowed in turn two, Kressley, 13th-place starter, advanced to second to pressure Sheriff for the top spot.
Behind Sheriff and Kressley waiting for a slip-up were Duane Howard, Ron Kline and Jared Umbenhauer.
The red was thrown on the 23rd lap after Frank Yankowski hit the third turn wall with heavy impact and had flames coming out from underneath his car which was extinguished quickly. Alex Yankowski was along the third turn inside berm with both out of contention. Sheriff held his line when action resumed, but not he had to contend with Howard, who was in the runner-up spot making his presence known.
Sheriff and Howard exchanged paint on occasions and with five to go Kressley was back in second with Howard, Umbenhauer and now Rick Laubach in pursuit.
The battle for the lead continued between Sheriff and Kressley with neither one giving an inch as the race progressed. Both drivers swapped lanes several times, but the outcome remained the same.
Coming around for the one to go signal Kressley made a bold move and managed to take the lead away after using every inch of the track to find a way around.
Kressley didn’t give Sheriff another chance to regain the lead and pulled into the winner’s circle for his 11th career win. Following him across the line for his best finish was Sheriff trailed by Howard, Umbenhauer and Laubach. Sixth through tenth were Frank Cozze, Mike Laise, Von Dohren, Ryan Grim and Doug Manmiller.
Steve Wilson, Sheriff, Buckwalter and Bobby Gunther Walsh won the heats. Consies went to Kyle Weiss and Louden Reimert.
For the third straight week, ten-time point champion Jeff Strunk failed to finish the race.
Derrick Smith led four laps of the Sportsman feature before Brad Brightbill slowed with a flat tire in the first turn for the yellow. On the restart Nathan Mohr jumped into the lead to take control of the race.
It didn’t take Mohr long to build up a sizeable lead over Smith, Mike Mammana, Kyle Lilick and Nate Brinker.
Lap 13 was certainly an unlucky won for Mohr as his car seized up bringing him to a halt in turn two bringing out the caution. Mammana, who inherited the lead, wasted no time staying in front of the pack when action went green again with Smith, Brinker, Hirthler and Lilick in pursuit.
Hirthler overtook second on the 17th lap and set his sights on Mammana and the lead.
The lead changed hands for the fourth and final time on the 22nd lap when Hirthler overtook first.
Hirthler, whose contact in his right eye shifted earlier in the race and he had to rely on his left eye until it moved to a comfortable spot, never looked back once he was in front and proceeded into victory lane for his fourth career win. Mammana, Smith, Lilick and Brinker chased him across. Ryan Beltz, Brad Grim, Jack Butler, Brad Arnold and Brightbill rounded out the top ten.
Heats were won by Mohr, Mammana and Josh Adams. The consi went to Butler.
Joey Biasi led the USAC Sprint feature for four laps before Buckwalter charged to the front of the pack.
Chasing Buckwalter for numerous laps were Biasi, Carmen Perigo, Ryan Quackenbush and Steve Drevicki.
Quackenbush’s strong run ended when he slowed on the homestretch to bring out the seventh lap caution. It was still Buckwalter ahead with Chandler Leiby joining the mix.
Drevicki was on the move as he went from fourth to second in one lap to take chase after Buckwalter.
No one was able to reel Buckwalter in to challenge and he went on to take the checkered followed by Drevicki, Perigo, Biasi and Leiby.
Perigo, Biasi and Buckwalter won the heat winners. Zach Burd picked up the consi win.
Next Saturday, May 25, a doubleheader show of NASCAR T.P.Trailers Modifieds and T.P.Truck Equipment Sportsman closes out the month of May as the battle for the NASCAR titles goes on. Racing starts at 7:30 p.m. Adult admission is $15 with youngsters 11 and under admitted free. Spectator gates open at 5:30 p.m.
Coming up on June 1st is the first of two visits for the Central PA Legends as part of a tripleheader show that will also feature the NASCAR Modifieds and Sportsman stock cars. There is no increase in the admission price for this tripleheader.
T.P. Trailers Modified Feature (30-laps): 1. Brett Kressley, 2. Skyler Sheriff, 3. Duane Howard, 4. Jared Umbenhauer, 5. Rick Laubach, 6. Frank Cozze, 7. Mike Laise, 8. Craig Von Dohren, 9. Rayan Grim, 10. Doug Manmiller, 11. Kyle Weiss, 12. Clay Butler, 13. Dylan Swinehart, 14. Ron Seltmann Jr., 15. Bobby Gunther Walsh, 16. Craig Whitmoyer, 17. Justin Grim, 18. Tim Buckwalter, 19. Ron Kline, 20. Alex Yankowski, 21. Frank Yankowski, 22. Louden Reimert, 23. Danny Erb, 24. Steve Wilson, 25. Jordan Henn, 26. Meme DeSantis, 27. Kevin Hirthler, 28. Bobby Trapper, 29. Jeff Strunk, 30. Steve Swinehart, DNQ: Mike Lisowski, Brett Gilmore, Briggs Danner, Joe Funk, Richie Hitzler, Ron Myers, Ray Swinehart, Mark Levy, Brian Houseknecht, John Willman, Kyle Kania, Eric Behm, Kory Fleming, Steve Young, Ryan Lilick, Glenn Owens.
T.P. Truck Equipment Sportsman Feature (25-laps): 1. Brian Hirthler, 2. Mike Mammana, 3. Derrick Smith, 4. Kyle Lilick, 5. Nate Brinker, 6. Ryan Beltz, 7. Brad Grim, 8. Jack Butler, 9. Brad Arnold, 10. Brag Brightbill, 11. Mark Kemmerer, 12. Kyle Smith, 13. Dean Bachman, 14. Andrew Kreis, 15. Brandon Edgar, 15. Jesse Landis, 17. Scott Kohler, 18. Joey Vaccaro, 19. Andy Clemmer, 20. Josh Adams, 21. Sean Weiss, 22. Nathan Mohr, 23. Steve Desmelyk, 24. Tom Miller. DNQ: Lex Shive, Parker Guldin, Ray Cost, Chris Esposito, Warren Floyd Jr.
USAC Sprint Feature (25-laps): 1. Tim Buckwalter, 2. Steve Drevicki, 3. Carmen Perigo, 4. Joey Biasi, 5. Chandler Leiby, 6. Tyler Brehm, 7. Mike Thompson, 8. Jonathan Swanson, 9. Steve Surniak, 10. John Stehman, 11. David Swanson, 12. Jason Cherry, 13. Zach Burd, 14. Bryan Quackenbush, 15. Chris Allen, 16. Eddie Strada, 17. Eric Jennings, 18. Connor Loeffler, 19. Bill Unglert, 20. Jake Winters. DNQ: Kyle Lick.
Grandview Speedway PR
Jack Harvey qualified his No. 60 AutoNation / SiriusXM Honda IndyCar 25th for the 2019 Indianapolis 500 during the first day of official NTT IndyCar qualifying on Saturday. The qualifying result marks Meyer Shank Racing’s third successful qualifying effort for the team in the 500-mile event.
The two-day qualifying format saw positions 10-33 locked in on Saturday, with Sunday set to feature two sessions to determine the Fast 9 as well as the final row.
As one of the hottest days at the speedway so far this month setups changed as temperatures rose for the six hour and 50-minute qualifying window.
Rolling off 12th in the qualifying order, Harvey went out for his four lap qualifying attempt. The Brit’s first lap brought the No. 60 AutoNation / SiriusXM machine to its fastest speed of the session with a 228.566 mph.
The next two laps fell slightly with a 227.929 mph on Lap 2 and a 227.618 mph on Lap 3. The final lap saw Harvey make a quick save after the car made a swift slide at the exit of Turn 2, saving the car from making contact with the outside wall and maintaining throttle to finish off the lap. After getting through cleanly he finished the session with a four lap average of 227.695 mph.
Clear skies and blazing sunshine scorched the track for the afternoon hours, bringing the track temperature to 125+ degrees. The Meyer Shank Racing team was on standby for a second qualifying attempt as Harvey was positioned in the 23rd place range at the 3 o’clock hour.
The final 45-minutes saw Harvey sit first in qualifying line 2 – set for drivers looking to make an additional qualifying attempt but not risk losing their previous time – but was overridden by several drivers cycling through qualifying line 1.
Harvey was unfortunately unable to make a second attempt at qualifying and improve his time, but his initial effort was strong enough to lock him into 25th position for the 103rd running of the Indianapolis 500 on Sunday May 26th.
"The wind changed from what we were expecting, and I had too many moments coming out of turn two,” Harvey said of his qualifying run. “I haven't been that loose throughout practice so coming into qualifications and having oversteer on the turn exit is not a great feeling. It wasn't the run that I thought we were going to have. The first lap was good, but I couldn't stay flat on the second which caused us to lose too much. We had more pace that we were not able to show. We picked up a lot of front grip out of nowhere and I had a very close save. So it's good to be in the race after a less than perfect day. We made it. We are in and we can still race from where we are starting from."
The Indianapolis 500 will be broadcast live on NBC starting at 11:00am ET on Sunday May 26th. SiriusXM will also have live race coverage on SiriusXM channel 82.
Driver Ed Jones and the No. 63 Ed Carpenter Racing Scuderia Corsa Chevrolet topped the speed charts at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, earning a position in tomorrow's fast nine shootout for pole position in the 103rd running of the Indianapolis 500 presented by Gainbridge.
Jones was ultimately sixth fastest overall in today's NTT IndyCar qualifying run after turning the quickest Lap 1 of the day reaching a speed of 231.015 mph and fastest trap speed of 240 mph. That top speed along with three other lap times, puts him in position to take a run for the coveted pole position. Tomorrow, Sunday, May 19 from 1:15 to 2:15 p.m. ET the top nine drivers will qualify again in a pole bid. Today's qualifying times will not factor in to tomorrow's qualifying lap times. Following the shootout, the grid of 33 drivers will be set for the Indianapolis 500 and practice will resume.
Jones has proved tremendous strength in practice over the course of the week. On day three of practice none proved to be faster than Jones, he topped the charts as both fastest overall and fastest with no-tow. Jones has consistently been one of the fastest with no-tow throughout the week and never finished a practice session outside of the Top Ten.
For Jones today's success was based on the team's ability to quickly react to changing conditions.
"The conditions have been really difficult today," Jones said. "Including the temperatures and the wind, but car seems to be running really well. We just have to keep on top of how the conditions change, as tomorrow looks to be even hotter. Temperature will definitely play a big part in how qualifying goes. In the end, we just have to finalize a few small things and get ready for tomorrow."
For Team Owner Giacomo Mattioli today's success brought immense pride.
"I want to say thank you to Ed Carpenter and the entire Ed Carpenter Racing team," Mattioli said. "They proved again that they are tough competitors with all three cars making the Fast Nine. We are very happy to be in good position to compete for the pole. I know Ed Jones has the talent to fight for the top spot tomorrow. His work ethic has shown brightly all of May."
Sunday, May 19 qualifying begins again with the Last Row Shootout at 12:15 p.m. ET, then the Fast Nine Shootout takes places immediately after at 1:15 p.m. Once Jones secures his position in one of the first three rows for the Indianapolis 500 practice will resume. Sunday, May 26 is race day for the NTT IndyCar series with the green flag set to drop at 12:29 p.m. ET. The race is broadcast on NBC, check your local listings for details. Follow all the action on Scuderia Corsa social media channels: Twitter @Scuderia_Corsa, Facebook at Scuderia Corsa, Instagram at @Scuderia.Corsa.
Ed Carpenter Racing PR