By Steve Wittich
Turn 3 Motorsport driver Danial Frost was the quickest Indy Pro 2000 Championship Presented by Cooper Tires driver on a dry track during testing. The Singaporean backed up that performance on a damp track, during the quickest lap during the lone official practice session.
We were P1 overall in the series test last week (at Mid-Ohio) so that gave me a big boost in confidence to come here and push as hard as I wanted, knowing the car would be there – and the first session proved that,” said Frost. “We were able to work on things the rest of the test sessions since we knew we had the time. In the official practice, we were right up there so we know how strong we are to put the car where it’s supposed to be tomorrow, whether it’s wet or dry. I’m excited for tomorrow: the plan is to look forward and be calm. I’m working on being more relaxed and composed, and taking qualifying more strategically, and I think this plan will be successful.”
He was followed by a pair of series rookies, Devlin DeFrancesco (Andretti Steinbrenner Racing) and Hunter McElrea (Pabst Racing).
Much like the USF2000 drivers before them, the Indy Pro 2000 drivers that ventured onto the 4.014-mile, 14-turn natural terrain road course, did do on Cooper Tire rain tires.
— Exclusive Autosport (@ExclAutosport) July 9, 2020
At the halfway point of the session, DeFrancesco, McElrea, and Colin Kaminsky Pabst Racing, three drivers who are newcomers to Indy Pro 2000, were the only drivers to turn significant laps.
DeFrancesco, who had just completed his fifth lap, was the quickest, with a lap timed at 133.780 seconds. He was followed by McElrea, Parker Thompson, Colin Kaminsky, and testing leader Artem Petrov were the top five.
One of the few veterans to turn laps in the wet, Thompson, who is making his debut this weekend with DEForce Racing, went to the top of the timing screen on his third lap of the session, with 12-minutes remaining. It appeared that he was the only driver on slicks.
On his next lap, the veteran of 78 Road To Indy starts lowered the quick lap time significantly to 126.419 seconds. That was the cue for the much of the rest of the field to take to the track to turn laps.
With six minutes remaining, DeFrancesco lowered the quick lap time and continued to drop it until, with three minutes remaining, Petrov was able to go quicker.
Petrov’s time on the top of the timing screen didn’t last long, as veteran Frost, rookie McElrea, newcomer DeFrancesco, and then Frost ended up as the quickest driver of the practice.
The 15 drivers, only Bob Kaminsky, sat the session out, completed 115 trouble-free laps. Rookie DeFrancesco and McElrea were the busiest drivers, turning a dozen laps apiece.
The Indy Pro 2000 drivers and teams will qualify at 8:50 am on Saturday.
Indy Pro 2000 Grand Prix Of Road America Presented By Cooper Tires Honoring First Responders Practice #1 Results
|RANK||CAR NO.||DRIVER||TEAM||FAST LAP||DIFFERENCE||TOTAL LAPS|
|1||68||Danial Frost||Turn 3 Motorsport||2:01.659||–.—-||5|
|2||17||Devlin DeFrancesco||Andretti Steinbrenner Autosport||2:02.145||0.4853||12|
|3||18||Hunter McElrea||Pabst Racing||2:02.379||0.7196||12|
|4||9||Parker Thompson||DEForce Racing||2:02.482||0.8229||9|
|5||42||Artem Petrov||Juncos Racing||2:02.593||0.9340||6|
|6||8||Manuel Sulaiman||DEForce Racing||2:02.684||1.0252||8|
|7||36||Jacob Loomis||BN Racing with Team Benik||2:02.785||1.1253||5|
|8||1||Braden Eves||Exclusive Autosport||2:02.825||1.1659||8|
|9||19||Colin Kaminsky||Pabst Racing||2:02.986||1.3266||11|
|10||69||Nate Aranda||Juncos Racing||2:03.585||1.9258||9|
|11||3||Antoine Comeau||Turn 3 Motorsport||2:04.226||2.5664||4|
|12||2||Sting Ray Robb||Juncos Racing||2:04.584||2.9252||5|
|13||6||Moises de la Vara||DEForce Racing||2:06.957||5.2974||10|
|14||37||Sabre Cook||BN Racing with Team Benik||2:08.017||6.3581||5|
|15||83||Charles Finelli||FatBoy Racing||2:15.821||14.1619||6|
|16||57||Bob Kaminsky||Pabst Racing||No Time||—||—|