SEBRING, Fla. (December 12, 2012) – Graham Rahal, 23, completed his second day of testing with Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing (RLL) today at the 1.65-mile Sebring International Raceway. The track was wet from an overnight thunderstorm and morning sprinkles and steadily began to dry near noon. The team began testing in earnest after a lunch break and continued until showers brought an end to the test day at approximately 2:30 p.m. ET after Rahal had completed 51 trouble-free laps with a best lap time of 54.20.
“We went out and right away I think we found quite a bit of time,” said Rahal. “The baseline of the car was really good so I can’t say it was too challenging to get up to speed. Gerry (Hughes) and the guys have done a great job. We had some big changes in mind and some ideas that we wanted to try and unfortunately Mother Nature doesn’t want us to try them. We’ve been fighting the rain. But I think we’ve done a good job with our goal of being methodical and figuring things out. I certainly don’t know where we stack up in terms of lap times but I’m not that worried to be honest. We didn’t get to run as much as we would have liked but we’ll be back out there tomorrow working away. It’s going to be a very full day because we’ve got a lot of things on our list that we really want to try and the guys are working hard right now to get these things done over night so we can get some sort of direction from them. They are important things and we want to try to figure out if they are worth wile to use throughout the year.”
“We ran four laps in the morning and 47 in the afternoon and had just got into our stride at 2:30 when the rain came down with two-and-a-half hours to go and we hadn’t really gotten any further in terms of the items we wanted to test,” added race engineer Gerry Hughes. “It was another frustrating day in low grip conditions, thwarted by rain again. We should have a fine, dry day tomorrow but it certainly won’t be as warm as it was today.”
RLL was the lone team testing on Tuesday but multiple teams and drivers were on track today and are expected to return tomorrow when the team continues their test program.
The 2013 IZOD IndyCar Series season will begin with the Honda Grand Prix of St. Petersburg on March 24. The 2013 season will mark the seventh in a top-tier open wheel racing series for the 23-year-old, who became the youngest winner in major auto racing history when he drove to victory in his first IndyCar Series race at the 2008 Honda Grand Prix of St. Petersburg at the age of 19. The following season he became the youngest pole winner at the same event – both while driving for Newman/Haas/Lanigan Racing, a team co-owned by Michael Lanigan at the time. Graham came close to winning again in 2012 as he led the closing laps at Texas Motor Speedway before a slight brush of the wall with two laps to go forced him to settle for second place.
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