Rain turns it into a low-Carb Day

TERRY JONES

, Last Updated: 7:18 AM ET

INDIANAPOLIS -- So what do you need with a Carburetion Day when Jim Clark and Dan Gurney in 1963 were the last to actually use carburetors on Carburetion Day?

So no big deal that it was wiped out by rain here yesterday?

Actually it's now called Miller Light Carb Day and includes a one-hour Indy 500 car final practice session prior to tomorrow's 92 running of the race, a 100-mile support series race and the McDonalds pit stop competition, all of which were wiped out.

And this year it was a big deal to be losing track time.

The problem with losing the hour of practice on Carb Day is that there are a lot of drivers in this race who could have used it. With 11 rookies, most of them from the Champ Car Series with almost no oval experience at all, getting time on the big track for the big race is crucial. And it's been a very moist month of May.

While the forecast is for a beautiful race day, the entire field of 33 cars only managed 189 laps of practice before the rains came here yesterday.

Dan Weldon managed to get in six laps and led the way for the day at 223.934 miles per hour.

"My theory around here is that if you don't know it by Carb Day, you're never going to have it," said Weldon.

Normally that may be true. But this is a special year here.

"It was really disappointing for the fans because, well, I don't know about you with the traffic you had coming in, but it seemed like an awful lot. I almost missed the driver's meeting and, let me tell you, if I miss the Indianapolis 500 driver's meeting, Brian Barnhard would kick my butt royally. So I had to weave in and weave out a little bit."

Weldon probably got more practice getting to the track than anybody got at the track.

But what about all those new guys who needed it?

"We left the pits to try and do our first run and as soon as I got to the end of it, it was yellow, so we didn't do anything today. It's a shame," said Justin Wilson, winner of the Edmonton Champ Car race two years ago.


Videos

Photos