Saturday, August 29, 2009

Chicagoland Indy Lights On Track - Cunningham Quickest

Live from the media center at Chicagoland Speedway on a gray and windy day, the weather may be chilly but the Indy Lights teams have finished their hot laps and are now preparing to qualify. Wade Cunningham had fast time in this morning's practice session, followed by season points leader JR Hildebrand, who has a chance to clinch the Indy Lights championship today if he finishes 13th or better. The Lights cars are always entertaining on the ovals and today should be no different. Packs of 5 or more cars is not unusual and when I saw them doing that in practice this morning, I thought they must be crazy. Conditions today, however, are vastly different than yesterday, so all 16 teams were working on race setups the first half of the session and then focusing on changes for qualifying the second half.

My personal favorite Indy Lights driver is Ana Beatriz, who I saw win her first race at Nashville in 2008, and who had a wicked crash at Indy near me in May. I got this shot as practice wound down and the team was doing lots of work trying to tweak her shocks for qualifying. She ended up fourth quick in the practice session and should be a leading contender in the race today. I hope she can graduate to IRL next season!

Back with more later. Indy Lights qualifying is next followed by the Lights race and then IRL under the lights. Both should be entertaining. Ryan Briscoe is on pole for the IRL feature and I'm still not ready to make my pick yet...

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