Tim's notes from the track at Indy

 

U.S. NATIONALS at Indy, September 1-4, 2006

 

Nitro Qualifying Sessions:
  Friday, Sept 1, 7:30pm - Q1: 13.301 ET / 67.31 MPH
  This was the first run on the new tires this year. The tires are much better than we thought, especially under these conditions, so the car shook the tires at about 60 feet.  We need to tune it up and go again tomorrow.
  Saturday, Sept 2, 2:45pm - Q2: 5.001 ET / 220.94 MPH
  Based on last night we hopped the engine up with more compression, more blower, more lead, and 6 more grams on the clutch, but that was not enough clutch. The track was so good that with more power it made the clutch slip too much. The run was soft early but as the clutch started coming in the car started to pull OK and felt pretty good through half track then the blower belt broke. It didn't appear to hurt anything but the engine looked a little lean.
  Saturday, Sept 2, 7:30pm - Q3: 14.992 ET / 52.61 MPH
  Since the run earlier today didn't have enough clutch we added 16 grams of primary to the clutch. We also added 2 degrees of lead to the ignition timing. We were pretty confident that everything would be good, but on the run the tires spun and smoked at the hit of the throttle, so obviously we put too much clutch in it. When the engine returned to idle the feeling was that it had kicked a rod out of it. In fact it had kicked #1 and #2 rods out of it. It's unclear what caused this because the engine didn't over-rev and the rods appeared to be installed correctly, but we're still investigating.
  Sunday, Sept 3, 12:45pm - Q4: No run
  Due to engine damage and lack of spare parts we elected not to run the first qualifier today in order to concentrate on the final run later today.
  Sunday, Sept 3, 4:10pm - Q5: 5.068 ET / 200.74 MPH
  We knew the bump was 4.59 at the time so anything obviously slower than that and I was going to shut it off. When I did the burnout and backed up I heard the explosion behind us which was unnerving. When Rex motioned me forward I realized it wasn't us and I staged the car. The car left the starting line a little sluggish but then the clutch stages picked up the pace and it had a nice run through half track. Coming up on the 1000 ft cone I felt the engine drop a couple of cylinders (turned out to be #4 and #6) and I shut it off because it was obvious that it wasn't going to be a 4.59 and to stay in it would have seriously hurt the engine. After inspection it turned out that the rod bearings in cylinders #1 and #2 looked really bad. With the fantastic work of the crew I was glad we were able to come back and make a pretty good run against Millican.  Click here to see burnout photo of the car at Indy.