Monday, May 16, 2011

Tagliani Quickest at Indy May 16th - Ganassi Drivers Lurk

Alex Tagliani Checks Timing & Scoring
Canadian Alex Tagliani leaped to the top of the timesheets today at Indianapolis as practiced resumed for the Indy 500 after a total washout Sunday when no on track action took place due to persistent rain showers. Tags made up for lost time in a hurry but I was unfortunately not able to see him run his hot laps today as I got there after 3 from a teaching assignment and had to leave at 4:30 to officiate a soccer game. Such is the life I lead these days but at least I got out to Turn 3 for a little while to get dialed back in from the inside fence where I will most likely shoot on race day again this year. I've got partial days @IMS this week up until Fast Friday when I plan to be out all day. I still have a lot of drivers to catch up with and have not been able to get shots of each car that has run laps yet, so I have a lot of work to do still this week before Pole Day Saturday.

The most impressive runs that I saw today were by the Ganassi teams. Both the Target guys ran well and within a handful of laps, both Dario Franchitti and Scott Dixon were easily in the top 10 speeds for the day. Nearly showing up the "big brother" team was Graham Rahal in his Service Central machine, running third on the day, although it took him a few more laps to get that done. Ryan Briscoe seems to be growing in confidence as he ran fourth quick today ahead of his more celebrated Penske teammates. Newman Haas continues its resurgence behind Oriol Servia as the man with the Salvadore Dali helmet design wound up fifth on the day. AJ Foyt's primary driver Vitor Meira still knows the fast way around Indy as he ended up sixth followed by Dario. Helio Castroneves in eighth, Marco Andretti in ninth and Will Power in tenth rounded out the quick runners for Monday's full day of practice. The following slideshow has the drivers in order of speed today.

Now there are just four days of practice before Pole Day and the screws will start tightening down soon enough. No one has spun or hit the fence yet, and that is always an anxious time at Indy, wondering who the first will be and where it will happen. Everyone will be getting after it Tuesday and I should have most of the afternoon available to shoot at the track before I have to go to class in the late afternoon. I hate missing Indy's happy hour from five to six, but those are the cards I've been dealt this year. I will play what I've got and get ready for three full days of track activity Friday, Saturday and Sunday. It doesn't get much better than this.

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