By Flinn Lazier:
Memorial day weekend had finally rolled around after the long off season for the Lazier Racing team.
Going into the month was probably one of the biggest scrambles we’ve ever had, as one of our old ‘partners’ decided to take some of our body kit and equipment. Finding new gear for our car proved to be a challenge and we were soon asking to borrow parts (even a steering wheel) from other full time teams.
Luckily we were able to bring everything together in time for about 30 laps of practice before qualifying.
Although this does not seem like very much time, the team came in and absolutely gave everything they had to get our car across the bricks once again. Rolling off the line for qualifying it was clear that our car was still in race trim as we never had the time to trim the car out for qualifying still having a lot of downforce in the car. But after the first qualifying season the team decided to take a little wing out to see if we could get maybe just one extra mile an hour out of her.
All said and done, laying it on the line, and putting on an unpredictable set up, we put down a very good time for our program placing the car in the 30th starting possession, the first time in Lazier Racing history that we have not been on the last row of the grid.
After a long week of media appearances it was finally time to see if we had anything new to bring to the speedway. Unfortunately we were missing one piece going into the race and that was the weight jacker. The weight jacker moves weight in the car to allow the driver to make balance changes while in the driving, a very important tool used at Indy.
We started off a little sluggish, we ran out of fuel right before coming in for our first pit stop having to restart the car which held us up and put us two laps down. After our first stop we started to make up ground again and made up 1 of our laps. We started to find a happy rhythm after the red flag and moved up to 26th.
Unfortunately we started to lose radio contact and the car soon became out of balance. The team could no longer give pit instructions for the moment and it started to become clear that the car was suffering from a creeping oversteer.
A tire can only be pushed so far. Entering turn two the car became unstable and threw the middle of the corner the right rear tire gave up sending Buddy and the car into the outside wall at 225MPH. The car spun so quickly he hit the wall head on pulling a several G impact and costing to a stop at the middle of the back straight away.
Luckily Dallara, Chevy, and the whole Indy Car team have become so advanced and so good in their work that he climbed out with only the wind knocked out of him and a sore chest. Without the extreme attention to detail by these groups people like Scott and even Buddy may no longer be with us today and the sport would not be the ex.
The Lazier Racing car suffered bodywork damage and slight brushes to the tub, nothing that can’t be fixed. With a new 2018 body kit, help from our partners, and the priceless work put in from the crew, we will be back and hopefully better than ever.
Every year we build our program and maybe someday we can grow into something much bigger than what we are now. For now we continue to grow the Lazier brand, Lazier name, and the three generation Lazier legacy. We will be coming out with shirts, hats, and other items soon on our web-site that will be announced soon on all of our social media branches. This amazing opportunity would not be possible without the Hulman George Family, everyone who volunteers during the month of May, Jeff Teague with The Factory, Dario, Stalk It, Chevrolet and all the crew members who give it their all during the month of may, Thank you!