Rahal, Legge Granted Special IMS Session On Thursday

| Senior Writer, RacinToday.com Wednesday, May 24 2023

Driver Graham Rahal, who was tapped to sub for injured Stefan Wilson in Sunday’s Indianapolis 500 by team co-owner Dennis Reinbold (left) will get some seat time in his new car on Thursday. (Photos courtesy of INDYCAR)

By John Sturbin | Senior Writer

INDYCAR will conduct a special, on-track “install” session Thursday, May 25, for Graham Rahal and the No. 24 Dreyer & Reinbold Racing Chevrolet and Katherine Legge’s No. 44 Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing Honda in the aftermath of an accident involving both teams during practice on Monday for the 107th Indianapolis 500.

The 15-minute session will take place around the 2.5-mile Indianapolis Motor Speedway from 4:30-4:45 p.m. (EDT) in preparation for Friday’s final practice from 11 a.m.-1 p.m. on Miller Lite Carb Day.

Rahal was introduced Tuesday as substitute driver of the No. 24 DRR/Cusick Motorsports Chevrolet, originally qualified by Stefan Wilson on Saturday. Wilson’s participation in “The Greatest Spectacle in Racing” ended at 2:11 p.m. on Monday, when his car was struck from behind by Legge’s and forced into the outside SAFER Barrier in Turn 1.

Wilson suffered a fracture of the 12th thoracic vertebrae and declared ineligible to compete in Sunday’s 200-lapper. Earlier Wednesday, DRR issued a release stating Wilson was scheduled for surgery today at IU Health Methodist Hospital to stabilize the injured area.

Each team will be allowed unlimited install laps (out and in) within Thursday’s time frame. However, the teams will not be allowed to stay on the track to cross the start/finish line and famed Yard of Bricks.

The 34-year-old son of 1986 Indy 500 champion and RLLR co-owner Bobby Rahal, Graham will compete in his 16th Indy 500 after being offered the ride in a phone call from team founder Dennis Reinbold, an Indianapolis-based Chevrolet dealer. Graham’s No. 15 Honda fielded by RLLR was bumped out of the traditional 33-car field Sunday afternoon by full-time teammate Jack Harvey of Great Britain during Last Chance Qualifying to fill Row 11.

Wilson, a 33-year-old native of Sheffield, England, qualified the No. 24 car in the 25th position with a four-lap/10-mile average speed of 231.648 mph.

Monday’s incident in practice put a damper on an otherwise historic weekend at IMS for Legge, a 42-year-old native of Guildford, United Kingdom.

Katherine Legge will get special seat time in her rebuilt Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing Honda on Thursday.

Legge secured a spot in her third Indy 500 and first since 2013 on Saturday, turning the fastest single qualifying lap and four-lap averages by a female driver in event history. Legge’s single flying lap of 231.627 mph broke the record of 230.201 mph set by Simona de Silvestro of Switzerland in 2021; Legge’s four-lap average of 231.070 mph eclipsed the mark of 229.439 mph set by Sarah Fisher in 2002 and secured the final Day 1 locked-in position at 30th. Legge finished 22nd as an Indy 500 rookie in 2012 and placed 26th in 2013.

Legge drove the current generation Indy car for the first time since 2013 on April 3 during a test on Texas Motor Speedway’s high-banked/1.5-mile oval in Fort Worth, site of the previous day’s PPG 375 won by two-time NTT IndyCar Series champion Josef Newgarden of Team Penske.

The DRR/Cusick team continues to prepare a backup Dallara chassis for Rahal, a contracted driver with Honda Performance Development who will race with Team Chevy’s twin-turbocharged V-6 engine for the first time in his career on Sunday.

“Going to jump in, be a little bit of a quick learning experience, but it’s nothing that we haven’t done before,” Rahal said during a news conference on Tuesday with Reinbold and partner Don Cusick at IMS. “Just got to settle in here over the next couple of days and really make sure that we’re comfortable with all the switches and all the (engine) mapping and all of the things that are going to be of high importance.

“Clearly when it comes to feeling the car out for the first time, that’s going to be Carb Day, and there’s not a lot of time to do that. But luckily on Sunday, there’s 500 miles for us to _ if the car is not in the window _ get the car closer.

“I wish my team at RLL the best, for sure. I certainly want to see them succeed. But I also wouldn’t be doing this if I didn’t want to go win with Don and Dennis and this entire organization. That’s my job. So that’s what we’re going to try to go do.”

The front row for the 107th running of the Indianapolis 500 will consist of, left to right, Felix Rosenqvist of Sweden, Rinus VeeKay of the Netherlands and pole-winner Alex Palou of Spain.

Next on-track session is Friday’s Carb Day practice. Pre-event coverage on Race Day, May 28, will begin at 11 a.m. (EDT) on NBC, Peacock, Telemundo Deportes on Universo and the INDYCAR Radio Network. Green flag for the traditional flying start is set to wave at 12:45 p.m.

Additionally, SiriusXM announced Wednesday its programming schedule for the weekend. SiriusXM listeners will have access to a live call of the race Sunday beginning at 11 a.m. on SiriusXM INDYCAR Nation (SiriusXM Channel 160) and NBC Sports Audio (SiriusXM Channel 85). Both channels are available to subscribers nationwide in their cars and on the SXM App.

SiriusXM INDYCAR Nation also will air live coverage of Friday’s Carb Day Practice at 11 a.m.


Firestone Fast Six qualifying results Sunday for the 107th Indianapolis 500 presented by Gainbridge NTT IndyCar Series event on the 2.5-mile Indianapolis Motor Speedway, with rank, car number in parentheses, driver, engine, time and speed in parentheses:

1.(10) Alex Palou, Honda, 02:33.7037 (234.217 mph)
2. (21) Rinus VeeKay, Chevrolet, 02:33.7077 (234.211)
3. (6) Felix Rosenqvist, Chevrolet, 02:33.7713 (234.114)
4. (14) Santino Ferrucci, Chevrolet, 02:34.0695 (233.661)
5. (5) Pato O’Ward, Chevrolet, 02:34.4015 (233.158)
6. (9) Scott Dixon, Honda, 02:34.4066 (233.151)
7. (7) Alexander Rossi, Chevrolet, 02:34.4332 (233.110)
8. (11) Takuma Sato, Honda, 02:34.4416 (233.098)
9. (66) Tony Kanaan, Chevrolet, 02:34.4558 (233.076)
10. (8) Marcus Ericsson, Honda, 02:34.5801 (232.889)
11. (55) Benjamin Pedersen, Chevrolet, 02:34.7246 (232.671)
12. (12) Will Power, Chevrolet, 02:34.7488 (232.635)
13. (33) Ed Carpenter, Chevrolet, 02:34.7128 (232.689)
14. (3) Scott McLaughlin, Chevrolet, 02:34.7206 (232.677)
15. (27) Kyle Kirkwood, Honda, 02:34.7311 (232.662)
16. (20) Conor Daly, Chevrolet, 02:34.8833 (232.433)
17. (2) Josef Newgarden, Chevrolet, 02:34.9039 (232.402)
18. (23) Ryan Hunter-Reay, Chevrolet, 02:35.0837 (232.133)
19. (28) Romain Grosjean, Honda, 02:35.1744 (231.997)
20. (06) Helio Castroneves, Honda, 02:35.2032 (231.954)
21. (26) Colton Herta, Honda, 02:35.2055 (231.951)
22. (60) Simon Pagenaud, Honda, 02:35.2539 (231.878)
23. (18) David Malukas, Honda, 02:35.3270 (231.769)
24. (98) Marco Andretti, Honda, 02:35.3857 (231.682)
25. (24) Stefan Wilson, Chevrolet, 02:35.4083 (231.648)
26. (29) Devlin DeFrancesco, Honda, 02:35.6061 (231.353)
27. (78) Agustin Canapino, Chevrolet, 02:35.6287 (231.320)
28. (77) Callum Ilott, Chevrolet, 02:35.7212 (231.182)
29. (50) R.C. Enerson, Chevrolet, 02:35.7574 (231.129)
30. (44) Katherine Legge, Honda, 02:35.7971 (231.070)
31. (45) Christian Lundgaard, Honda, 02:36.7607 (229.649)
32. (51) Sting Ray Robb, Honda, 02:36.8293 (229.549)
33. (30) Jack Harvey, Honda, 02:37.0916 (229.166)


Winners (9) _ Helio Castroneves, Takuma Sato, Scott Dixon, Marcus Ericsson, Ryan Hunter-Reay, Tony Kanaan, Simon Pagenaud, Will Power, Alexander Rossi.

Rookies (4) _ Agustín Canapino, R.C. Enerson, Benjamin Pedersen, Sting Ray Robb.

U.S. drivers (13) _ Marco Andretti, Ed Carpenter, Conor Daly, R.C. Enerson, Santino Ferrucci, Colton Herta, Ryan Hunter-Reay, Kyle Kirkwood, David Malukas, Josef Newgarden, Graham Rahal, Sting Ray Robb, Alexander Rossi.

International drivers (20 from 14 countries) _ Agustín Canapino, Helio Castroneves, Devlin DeFrancesco, Scott Dixon, Marcus Ericsson, Romain Grosjean, Jack Harvey, Callum Ilott, Tony Kanaan, Katherine Legge, Christian Lundgaard, Scott McLaughlin, Pato O’Ward, Simon Pagenaud, Alex Palou, Benjamin Pedersen, Will Power, Felix Rosenqvist, Takuma Sato, Rinus VeeKay.

Engines (33) _ Honda 16, Chevrolet 17 (all cars use Dallara chassis and Firestone Firehawk tires).

Point Standings (top-15): 1, Alex Palou, Chip Ganassi Racing, 174; 2, Pato O’Ward, Arrow McLaren, 168; 3, Marcus Ericsson, Chip Ganassi Racing, 155; 4, Romain Grosjean, Andretti Autosport, 134; 5, Scott McLaughlin, Team Penske, 133; 6, Josef Newgarden, Team Penske, 131; 7, Scott Dixon, Chip Ganassi Racing, 127; 8, Will Power, Team Penske, 122; 9, Christian Lundgaard, Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing, 111; 10, Alexander Rossi, Arrow McLaren and Kyle Kirkwood, Andretti Autosport, 108; 12, Colton Herta, Andretti Autosport with Curb/Agajanian, 107; 13, Felix Rosenqvist, Arrow McLaren, 97; 14, Callum Ilott, Juncos Hollinger Racing, 92; 15, Graham Rahal, Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing, 86.

Official NTT IndyCar Series entry list for the 107th running of the Indianapolis 500 Presented by Gainbridge at the 2.5-mile Indianapolis Motor Speedway on Sunday, May 28, with car number in parenthesis, driver, hometown, car name with engine supplier and team entrant:

  1. (2) Josef Newgarden, Nashville, Tenn., Shell Powering Progress Team Penske Chevrolet/Team Penske
  2. (3) Scott McLaughlin, Christchurch, New Zealand, Pennzoil Team Penske Chevrolet/Team Penske
  3. (5) Pato O’Ward, Monterrey, Mexico, Arrow McLaren Chevrolet/Arrow McLaren
  4. (06) Helio Castroneves-(W), Sao Paulo, Brazil, AutoNation/SiriusXM Honda/Meyer Shank Racing
  5. (6) Felix Rosenqvist, Varnamo, Sweden, Arrow McLaren Chevrolet/Arrow McLaren
  6. (7) Alexander Rossi-(W), Nevada City, Calif., Arrow McLaren Chevrolet/Arrow McLaren
  7. (8) Marcus Ericsson-(W), Kumla, Sweden, Huski Ice Spritz Chip Ganassi Racing Honda/Chip Ganassi Racing
  8. (9) Scott Dixon-(W), Auckland, New Zealand, PNC Bank Chip Ganassi Racing Honda/Chip Ganassi Racing
  9. (10) Alex Palou, Barcelona, Spain, The American Legion Chip Ganassi Racing Honda/Chip Ganassi Racing
  10. (11) Takuma Sato-(W), Tokyo, Japan, Deloitte Honda/Chip Ganassi Racing
  11. (12) Will Power-(W), Toowoomba, Australia, Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet/Team Penske
  12. (14) Santino Ferrucci, Woodbury, Conn., Homes For Our Troops Chevrolet/A.J. Foyt Enterprises
  13. (15) Graham Rahal, New Albany, Ohio, United Rentals Honda/Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing
  14. (18) David Malukas, Chicago, Ill., HMD Trucking Honda/Dale Coyne Racing with HMD
  15. (20) Conor Daly, Noblesville, Ind., Bitnile.com Chevrolet/Ed Carpenter Racing
  16. (21) Rinus VeeKay, Hoofddorp, The Netherlands, Bitnile.com Chevrolet/Ed Carpenter Racing
  17. (23) Ryan Hunter-Reay-(W), Fort Lauderdale, Fla., Dreyer & Reinbold Racing Chevrolet/Dreyer & Reinbold Racing
  18. (24) Stefan Wilson, Sheffield, England, DRR Cusick CareKeepers Chevrolet/Dreyer & Reinbold Racing
  19. (26) Colton Herta, Valencia, Calif., Gainbridge Honda/Andretti Autosport with Curb-Agajanian
  20. (14) Kyle Kirkwood, Jupiter, Fla., AutoNation Honda/Andretti Autosport
  21. (28) Romain Grosjean, Geneva, Switzerland, DHL Honda/Andretti Autosport
  22. (29) Devlin DeFrancesco, Toronto, Canada, Sodexo Honda/Andretti Steinbrenner Autosport
  23. (30) Jack Harvey, Bassingham, England, Kustom Entertainment Honda/Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing
  24. (33) Ed Carpenter, Indianapolis, Ind., Bitnile.com Chevrolet/Ed Carpenter Racing
  25. (44) Katherine Legge, Guildford, England, Hendrickson Honda/Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing
  26. (30) Christian Lundgaard, Hedensted, Denmark, Hy-Vee Honda/Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing
  27. (50) R.C. Enerson-(R), New Port Richey, Fla., Abel Motorsports Chevrolet, Abel Motorsports
  28. (51) Sting Ray Robb-(R), Payette, Idaho, biohaven Honda/Dale Coyne Racing with Rick Ware Racing
  29. (55) Benjamin Pedersen-(R), Copenhagen, Denmark, A.J. Foyt Racing/Sexton Properties Chevrolet/A.J. Foyt Enterprises
  30. (60) Simon Pagenaud-(W), Montmorillon, France, AutoNation/SiriusXM Honda/Meyer Shank Racing
  31. (66) Tony Kanaan-(W), Salvador, Brazil, Arrow McLaren Chevrolet/Arrow McLaren
  32. (77) Callum Ilott, Cambridge, England, Juncos Hollinger Racing Chevrolet/Juncos Hollinger Racing
  33. (78) Agustin Canapino-(R), Arrecifes, Argentina, Juncos Hollinger Chevrolet/Juncos Hollinger Racing
  34. (98) Marco Andretti, Nazareth, Pa., KULR/Curb Honda/Andretti Herta with Marco & Curb-Agajanian

Note _ All cars use the fourth generation NTT IndyCar Series chassis (Dallara IR-12) with universal IR-18 aerodynamic bodywork, Chevrolet or Honda twin-turbocharged V-6 engines and Firestone Firehawk tires.

(W) _Denotes Indianapolis 500 winner

(R) _ Denotes Indianapolis 500 Rookie of the Year candidate


Sunday, March 5 _ Streets of St. Petersburg, Fla.: Marcus Ericsson, Chip Ganassi Racing

Sunday, April 2 _ Texas Motor Speedway, Fort Worth: Josef Newgarden, Team Penske

Sunday, April 16 _ Streets of Long Beach: Kyle Kirkwood, Andretti Autosport

Sunday, April 30 _ Barber Motorsports Park, Birmingham, Ala.: Scott McLaughlin, Team Penske

Saturday, May 13 _ Indianapolis Motor Speedway Road-Course: Alex Palou, Chip Ganassi Racing

Sunday, May 28 _ Indianapolis Motor Speedway Oval, NBC/Peacock

Sunday, June 4 _ Streets of Detroit, NBC/Peacock

Sunday, June 18 _ Road America, Elkhart Lake, Wis., USA Network/Peacock

Sunday, July 2 _ Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course, Lexington, Ohio. USA Network/Peacock

Sunday, July 16 _ Streets of Toronto, Peacock

Saturday, July 22 _ Iowa Speedway, Newton, NBC/Peacock

Sunday, July 23 _ Iowa Speedway, Newton, NBC/Peacock

Sunday, Aug. 6 _ Streets of Nashville, NBC/Peacock

Saturday, Aug. 12 _ Indianapolis Motor Speedway Road-Course, USA Network/Peacock

Sunday, Aug. 27 _World Wide Technology Raceway, Madison, Ill., NBC/Peacock

Sunday, Sept. 3 _ Portland (Ore.) International Raceway, NBC/Peacock

Sunday, Sept. 10 _ WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca, Monterey, Calif., NBC/Peacock

(Editor’s Note: John Sturbin is a Texas-based journalist specializing in motorsports. During a near 30-year career with the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, he won the Bloys Britt Award for top motorsports story of the year (1991) as judged by The Associated Press; received the National Hot Rod Association’s Media Award (1995) and several in-house Star-Telegram honors. He also was inaugural recipient of the Texas Motor Speedway Excellence in Journalism Award (2009). His list of freelance clients includes Texas Motor Speedway, the Dallas Morning News, New York Newsday, Rome (N.Y.) Daily Sentinel, Corpus Christi (Texas) Caller Times, NASCAR Wire Service, Ford Racing and Used Car Dealer magazine).


| Senior Writer, RacinToday.com Wednesday, May 24 2023
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