Dale Coyne Racing endured a difficult day one of qualifying for the 100th running of the Indianapolis 500 presented by PennGrade Motor Oil as Pippa Mann in the No.63 Susan G Komen Honda suffered a rear wing end plate failure during her opening run in qualifying and speaking following the session she commented by saying:
That was a massively tough break with the failure of the rear wing end fence on my qualifying run. I’m just really glad that I was able to have quick hands and with some help from Lady Luck we were able to minimize the damage to the car. The boys are working away in the garage. We’ve had a great car all week. The engine wasn’t harmed, the gearbox wasn’t harmed, it’s mainly bolt on stuff so we’ll put it back together and we’ll go run strongly tomorrow.
Mann will be the first driver on driver on track for qualifying on Sunday. Bryan Clauson finished the day in 22nd place with a lap average of 227.110mph and speaking following the session he commented by saying:
Overall, it was a pretty good run for us. We’ve kind of been a step behind all week, for no other reason than trying to make up that experience gap. My team’s doing a really good job of walking me through the process, all our guys and gal, Gabby, Conor, Pippa, everybody’s been really helpful in bringing me along as quick as we can. I’m kind of mad at myself. I blew the first lap by making a couple of mistakes that probably brought the average down quite a bit. We were not looking at a Fast Nine run anyway, so we’ll regroup, come out tomorrow and try to move up the grid as much as we can. I’m really proud of all my guys, that’s as comfortable as I’ve ever been in qualifying here so I’m happy.
Gabby Chaves lead the early stages of practice and ended the qualifying run in 32nd place having failed to set a time and speaking following qualifying he commented by saying:
On our first run we thought we had made an incorrect change, so we were still confident that for our second run we’d be able to nail it down and go back to the performance we had on Fast Friday. Unfortunately, that wasn’t the case, something is still a little off. We definitely have some time to check it out to try to be quick again. We’ll see what we can do tomorrow. I’m a little confused right now but I’m always optimistic, we always have to be. We’ve had a very strong car all week but it’s the first time something goes wrong so I’m confident the guys will figure it out and we can have our car back to how strong we’ve been.
Conor Daly ended his day in 17th place and speaking following the session he commented by saying:
It was a tough day. A little crazy at first after being pulled out of the line for precautionary measures after Pippa’s rear wing end fence failure. I wish we would have practiced this morning because the track changed so much today. In the end, we’re not in the Fast Nine, which I really thought that we had the potential to do but it is what it is. That said, I think that we can be pleased that we’re pretty fast. I wanted to give it another shot, because the car wasn’t that great on my first attempt but it was such a short time between the runs, that the engine got too hot and we may have lost a little bit of power there.