Well I’ve made it to the track; and the first practice is done with a few surprises. The first thing that surprised me; is just how many freaking wineries are between my place in the west D.C. area and Richmond. I kid you not I must have gone past 8 wineries. I’m not a huge wine guy, but one of them certainly sparked my interest, it was called the “Naked Winery.” I’m sure reality to whatever that really means will be a letdown, but I have to admit I’m still curious.
This being my first visit to Richmond International Raceway, I have to say it quite resembles the area surrounding Nashville & Bristol; in that it seems to be located right in the heart of a quaint little town. It was an easy drive, and an easy track to find and great foliage; it’s a bit humid but certainly nothing close to the sticky air of LSU football games.
Now onto the track activity thus far. Tows or not, this has to be one of the more surprising practice results as Hideki Mutoh topped the chart for almost the entire first hour barely edging Scott Dixon. Then after a track inspection, it looked like when everyone hit the track they went crazy in some drafting upping the earlier times but a full 1.5mph. We may have a lot of red/white Dario at the top of the charts, but its sprinkled with Matos, Scheckter, Viso, Wheldon & Mutoh all before we get to Ryan Briscoe in 9th.
Also of note; Tony Kanaan only turned 3 installation laps; so it looks like they'll be going full for the first time for qualifying.
Of course we all know to wait until qualifications; but Scheckter’s performance thus far is certainly worth noting. That is essentially the same car & personnel Milka kept at the back of the field; it looks like whatever adjustments were made at DRR over the last 2 weeks are working.
Picture via indycar.com