Photo: Chris Graythen/Getty Images

Tough Outing for VeeKay and Carpenter in Lone Practice Session at Texas

By Luis Torres, Staff Writer

It was a rough welcome to the NTT IndyCar Series moment for rookie Rinus VeeKay, who crashed in the opening minutes of rookie practice at Texas Motor Speedway Saturday. Not only him, but his boss man Ed Carpenter also had a moment in the lone practice session.

In preparation for the Genesys 300 later tonight at 8:00 pm EST on NBC, VeeKay was among the five drivers (others being Oliver Askew, Jack Harvey, Pato O’Ward and Alex Palou) who were given an additional 30 minutes to navigate the 1.5-mile oval.

After setting a speed of 206.893 mph, VeeKay clipped the white line in Turn 3 which led him losing control of his No. 21 Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet and slammed the wall. Thus, the first accident of the INDYCAR season had unfolded.

Once his wounded car laid to rest near pit entry, VeeKay told his team over the radio that he’s sorry for the rookie mistake as the team will now work on getting a car ready for qualifying.

“It’s very tough. I have to call it a rookie mistake for going too low. I’ll definitely learn from this,” said VeeKay. “It’s quite hard getting into a car without doing any sim work. You’re just trying to get there as quick as possible. You can make a rookie mistake, it’s done.”

Live coverage of qualifying begins at 5:00 pm EST on NBCSN. For VeeKay (who ended up fastest in the 30-minute session), that’s where his mind will shift towards as that’ll be the next time he’ll get track time.

“I’ll look on the data and I’ll try to look as much as possible to what Ed is doing,” said VeeKay. “I’ll reset for qualifying and hopefully it’s going to be okay.”

Carpenter’s practice run didn’t fare much better as he lost control of his No. 20 Chevrolet in Turn 4. Understeering is what led to his spin, only sustaining minor scrapes on his rear wing, but did ended up having flat rear tires.

In his tenure at the track, Carpenter was 12th fastest up to that point at 209.309 mph. Minutes later, Carpenter got back into his car and logged more laps. Once the session ended, he ended up 18th at a 211.154 mph.

Tags : , , , , , , ,

From the Pacific Northwest, Luis is a University of Idaho graduate with a Bachelor's degree in Broadcasting and Digital Media. Ever since watching the 2003 Daytona 500, being involved in auto racing is all he's ever dreamed of doing. Over the years, Luis has focused on writing, video and photography ranging from Idaho athletics to auto racing with ambitions of having his work recognized.