Cheever Goes Over 214 MPH in Practice
Driver Sets Pace for Belterra Indy 300
Eddie Cheever, Jr., was the only driver to break 214 MPH Friday during two practice sessions at Kentucky Speedway for the Indy Racing League Northern Light Series "Belterra Casino Indy 300." Cheever turned a top lap of 214.439 MPH in the morning session and followed it up with a lap at 214.434 in the afternoon in the No. 51 Cheever Indy Racing Infiniti Dallara.
"We tried a few things at the start of the afternoon session that did not work," Cheever said. "Once we got those issues sorted out, we were able to run on full tanks for the last part of the practice. The car felt good and we were able to run a 214."
Scott Sharp (No. 8 Delphia Automotive Systems Dallara Oldsmobile) was the second fastest on the day, topping out at 213.719 MPH in the afternoon practice. Greg Ray (No. 2 Johns Manville/Mernard Dallara Oldsmobile) was third with a 212.925 MPH.
In all, seven drivers broke 212 MPH in the afternoon, compared to just two, Cheever and Sharp, in the morning. The drivers took 1,730 laps during the two practice sessions, and all the drivers were pleased with the track condition.
"The track is good," Sharp said. "It's bumpy here and there, but it gives us a challenge that we welcome. Just like at every track we're going to have to work with the bumps, and that's a challenge we're willing to deal with."
The IRL practice was part of a busy weekend at Kentucky Speedway. Friday is the "Jani-King Short Track Triple Header" featuring the Baby Grands, ARCA Trucks and USAC Midgets. Heat races. Qualifying will get underway at 8 p.m.
Saturday will feature qualifying for the "Belterra Casino Indy 300" at noon followed by the NASCAR Gatordade All-Pro "The WHAS 150" at 2 p.m.
Sunday the 2001 season at Kentucky Speedway will end with the "Belterra Casino Indy 300" at 1:30 p.m. The race will be broadcast live on ABC.
Tickets are still available for all races this weekend and may be purchased in person at the Speedway's ticket office in Sparta.