Montoya Fastest On Carb Day
May 26, 2000 | 12:00 A.M. EST
Montoya, driving the No. 9 G Force/Oldsmobile, turned a lap of 218.257 mph. He will start second in Sunday's Indianapolis 500, in the middle of the first row.
Greg Ray, the pole winner, was ninth fastest at 215.560 in the No. 1 Team Menard Dallara/Oldsmobile.
"The car is really good," said Montoya, defending CART series champion. "It is very comfortable to drive and very consistent. We made some final changes this morning. I think I've got a good race car now. We're just hoping for a good race and good weather for the weekend."
Montoya and his Chip Ganassi Racing teammate, Jimmy Vasser, will have a busy weekend. The two are scheduled to compete in a 200-lap CART race on the 1-mile Nazareth (Pa.) Speedway on Saturday and then fly back to Indianapolis for Sunday's 84th Indianapolis 500.
Two former Indianapolis 500 winners had strong runs in the Carb Day practice. Eddie Cheever Jr., who won in 1998, was second fastest at 217.909 in the No. 51 Dallara/Infiniti and Buddy Lazier, the 1996 champion, was third at 217.728 in the No. 91 Dallara/Oldsmobile.
Raul Boesel was fourth fastest in the Treadway Racing No. 55 G Force/Oldsmobile at 217.303, and Vasser was fifth at 216.845 in the No. 10 Target G Force/Oldsmobile.
The third front-row starter, Eliseo Salazar, was 15th fastest at 214.038 in the No. 11 G Force/Oldsmobile.
Two-time Indianapolis 500 winner Al Unser Jr., the third former 500 winner qualified for the race, was 23rd fastest at 211.957. Unser will start 18th Sunday in the No. 3 G
Rookie Sarah Fisher, who will start 19th in the Indianapolis 500, registered the 25th fastest speed of the day at 211.736, which suited Fisher just fine.
"The car is really comfortable at 210 or 211," said Fisher. "That's where we think the race pace will be come Sunday. We have a terrific cool-weather setup. If it's cooler Sunday, that's good because it will be more to my liking anyway."
Current weather forecasts for Sunday predict cool conditions, with a high temperature around 70 degrees and a chance of scattered showers in the morning hours.
Panther Racing and driver Scott Goodyear won the $80,000 Coors Indy 500 Pit Stop Challenge, defeating Treadway Racing and driver Robby McGehee by 1.53 seconds in the final round. The Treadway team completed a faster pit stop in the final round but was assessed a three-second penalty because a tire rolled out of the pit box, a Challenge rules violation.
The Panther team earned $42,500 for the championship, $5,000 of which will be donated to the American Red Cross of Greater Indianapolis in Panther's name.
Panther also won the Coors Indy 500 Pit Stop Challenge in 1998.
Carburetion Day Practice Results
Indianapolis 500 Lineup