Baltimore Grand Prix – Streets of Baltimore, Maryland
PRACTICE NOTES/QUOTES – Friday, September 2, 2011
SPROTT DRIVER HINCHCLIFFE EIGHTH FASTEST IN PRACTICE FOR THE BALTIMORE GRAND PRIX; TELEMUNDO DRIVER SERVIA 19TH
1st: Will Power 1:22.1373 / 89.411 mph
8th: James Hinchcliffe 1:23.0082 / 88.473 mph
19th: Oriol Servia 1:24.2092 / 87.211 mph
Oriol Servia, No. 2 Telemundo Dallara/Honda/Firestone: "This track is a challenge for both drivers and engineers. It's full of different types of surface and has bumpier and smoother areas. It will come down to who gets the best compromise from their car to be at the top. I think it is fun. There are a couple of areas that could be a little better, a little faster. But for a first guess, I think they did a very good job with the track. The session was good, I felt okay. The Telemundo team was P19 but everybody put on new tires and we didn't so I think we are in the top-10; nothing stellar yet but there is something to work on."
FAST FACTS: Will be his be his first race here...Servia, a native of Catalonia, Spain, has made 29 starts for NHR which include his first Indy car win (Montreal 2005) and pole (Surfers Paradise, Australia 2005) as well as a total of NINE top-three finishes. In 2005, Servia replaced NHR driver Bruno Junqueira, who suffered a season-ending injury at the Indy 500 on May 29, and then went on to finish second to teammate Sebastien Bourdais in the point standings after 11/13 events with the team. Servia returned to NHR in 2009 for four races with a season-best finish of fourth at Twin Ring Motegi...Best start and finish of the 2011 season are 2nd place – both in New Hampshire...Is FOURTH in series point standings with 327.
James Hinchcliffe, No. 06 Sprott Dallara/Honda/Firestone: "This is a fun, challenging little track. It definitely feels a lot tighter in a 650 horsepower car than it did on a bicycle (rode a bicycle on the track earlier today) so you really appreciate just how tight and tricky some of these sectors are. At the end of the day, they have done a good job with the track. The front is really bumpy but the rest of the track is quote smooth and pretty nice. It's a good layout with some technical parts. It's really tricky and difficult to get one full lap together will all your best sectors so qualifying is going to be a serious test. The car ran well and the setup, off the transporter, is pretty good so we'll keep tweaking at it a little bit, look at some video and data and I'm sure I will improve a bit and the car will improve a bit too. We will just take it one session at a time."
FAST FACTS: This will be his first race here...Toronto native Hinchcliffe, 24, finished second in the 2010 Firestone Indy Lights season standings after three wins and four poles. In total he earned eight podium finishes in 13 races... His highest road/street course start of the season is seventh at Mid-Ohio and highest road/street finish of fourth at Long Beach. Is ranked 14th with a total of 243 points and is only THREE behind Rookie of the Year leader Hildebrand (246) after 13 of 14 events so far this season (did not compete in St. Pete).
TUNE-IN... Qualifying will be televised at 6 p.m. EDT on Saturday while the race will be broadcast live on Sunday, September 4th at 2:00 p.m. EDT – both on Versus. The radio broadcast also will be carried on www.indycar.com As always, fans can follow the action from every on-track session via the official website of the IZOD IndyCar Series, www.indycar.com