May 13, 2013
Conor Daly arrived at the AJ Foyt Racing garage around 8:00 a.m. for his final fitting in the No. 41 ABC Supply Honda/Dallara. Four hours later he had passed two phases of his rookie test at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Daly passed his third and final phase –15 laps over 210 mph—during the afternoon practice. “Today was really cool, I really enjoyed my first few laps around here,” the second generation driver said. “The car feels great, very comfortable to drive, easy flat all around every lap. It’s crazy for me to think we have four more days of practice which is something that I’m not used to but it’s really nice. I’m excited that we can keep working at it and see where we end up.”
Teammate Takuma Sato set the sixth quickest time of the day with his speed of 223.363 mph in the No. 14 ABC Supply Honda. Sato ran 45 laps today. He ran the updated Honda engine which the crew installed last night because he had reached the 2000 maximum mileage for his first engine of the season. He was the quickest of the Honda powered drivers today.
“It was a very productive day,” Sato said. “We made some changes and collected very good data from them and everything went according to plan. I’m happy to see all of the progress. It’s nice to see that Conor got up to speed very quickly so we are able to go to the proper test plan for the two cars tomorrow.”
Daly ran 37 laps in the afternoon practice and he reached a top speed of 219.044 mph.
“I was a little bit iffy on things like how does the car feel, what does it feel like,” Daly explained, “but as soon as I got up to speed where you could really feel the downforce kick in, then it was fine. It was harder to go slower than it was to go fast. It’s nice to go fast!”
For Daly, passing his rookie test quickly meant that he can now focus on preparing for qualifying for the Indianapolis 500. Practice continues through Friday with qualifications set for this Saturday.