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Salesforce Driver is Okay after late day slide into the wall; DRR Team repairing the car 

SPEEDWAY, Ind. (May 17, 2018) – Young Sage Karam put in another impressive practice day Thursday at Indianapolis Motor Speedway with the fifth fastest overall speed in his No. 24 WIX Filters/Dreyer & Reinbold Racing Chevrolet in the third practice session for the 102nd Indianapolis 500 scheduled for May 27.

Karam, the 23-year-old veteran from Nazareth, Pa., recorded a best lap of 224.920 miles per hour Thursday in preparation for this weekend’s qualifications for the “Greatest Spectacle in Racing.” Karam, entering his fifth Indy 500 event, made a total of 72 laps in a day in which he tested in “race trim” and practiced pit stops with his six-person crew.

Karam’s teammate, J.R. Hildebrand of Boulder, Colo., clocked a best speed of 223.351 m.p.h. in the No. 66 Salesforce/DRR Chevrolet before a late day brush with the turn three wall halted his Thursday runs. Hildebrand, entering his eighth Indy 500, walked away from the incident and the DRR crew is now repairing the No. 66 for the “Fast Friday” practice runs.

Hildebrand, the 2011 Indy 500 runner-up and ‘Rookie of the Year,” completed 57 laps Thursday before the turn three mishap occurred.

“P5 today which is good,” said Karam. “A lot of guys were out there running qualifying simulations and we didn’t do that today. We really focused on the race car setup again. We struggled a little at first, but we made great changes at lunch time. We came back out and the car felt much better. We were able to mix it up with a lot of people out there. Tomorrow is ‘Fast Friday’ so we’ll get the extra boost (with the engine’s turbocharger). We’ll do our qualifying sims tomorrow. I need to get a good night’s sleep tonight as the next few days are stressful, but I’m looking forward to it. Overall, things are looking good for the WIX Filters team so far.”

“We were making some good progress with the car today,” said Hildebrand. “We are chasing the same things with car as everyone else. And we looked like we were getting there with the race setup. We were looking forward to making a long run at the end of the day in traffic. We weren’t that deep into the run and we had something happen in turn three with the car. We are still analyzing what might have happen.

“The car felt out of the ordinary. I didn’t feel like I was losing the car at all. I thought for sure I could save the car, which why I’m a little confused on what happened. I did have enough warning to keep it under control. It felt like I had a wacky wheel of a shopping cart because the car kept wobbling a bit. But I’m fine and ready to go tomorrow. I feel badly for the crew guys getting the car repaired now. I’m looking forward to Friday’s runs.”

“Fast Friday” practice, weather permitting, is set for 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. at Indianapolis Motor Speedway with qualifying rounds scheduled for Saturdayand Sunday. The 102nd Indy 500 gets underway Sunday, May 27, at 12:15 p.m. EDT.

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Overcast skies in the Wednesday morning at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway had the Dreyer & Reinbold Racing crews checking the radar for possible rain showers as the second day of Indianapolis 500 practice runs began.

But the skies cleared to a full seven hours of practice for drivers Sage Karam and J.R. Hildebrand in their continued preparation for the “Greatest Spectacle in Racing,” the 102nd Indianapolis 500 Mile Race on May 27.

With the blue skies and higher temperatures, Karam, in the No. 24 WIX Filters/DRR Chevrolet, and Hildebrand, in the No. 66 Salesforce/DRR Chevrolet, worked through a variety of settings with their respective engineers – Jeff Britton (Karam) and Chase Kaufman (Hildebrand) – as the temperatures grew (mid-80s) during the afternoon at the 2-1/2-mile oval.

Karam, the 23-year-old Nazareth, Pa. driver, timed in 82 laps Wednesday with a best lap of 224.887 miles per hour which was initially sixth fastest on the day. After race prep laps and running in traffic, Karam finished tenth fastest at the conclusion of practice.

Hildebrand, the 30-year-old Boulder, Colo., racer, turned in 69 circuits Wednesday with a top speed of 224.128 m.p.h. and listed as 20th fastest.

“We were just going off what we had Tuesday and trying to improve it,” said Karam. “We made some improvements throughout the day, but we still need to come some more a bit. Still seems like everyone is struggling a little still running in traffic. That’s what we did mostly today. We didn’t do any qualifying stuff today. We focused on our race car and we still have some improvements there to do overnight and see what we can do.

“It’s not as comfortable as I want for a race car yet, but we’re making progress and going in the right direction. It’s still early in the month and we’re doing well with two solid days. Same game plan tomorrow as well. I think our qualifying speed, when we run alone, is good. Just going to focus on the race car for now.”

Hildebrand, an Indy 500 top-ten finisher on three occasions including runner-up in 2011, thinks his team is working hard with the new body kit to find that “sweet spot” for the famed IMS oval.

“It’s tough,” he said. “We are still coming to grips with the car, just as everyone else is. Seems like everyone is fighting the same problems, so it will be a race to see who can make the right set of changes the quickest. To address what I think is a common handling problem, I think here at Dreyer & Reinbold, our cars are fast and I look forward to doing some qualifying prep tomorrow. I think we will be able to show how great of a job these guys have done in the off-season. I know for me I wouldn’t hate to have another day for prep and to continue to make the car better.”

Practice continues on Thursday and Friday (11 a.m. to 6 p.m.) at IMS with qualifying rounds scheduled for Saturday – to determine the top-nine and the 33-car field. Sunday’s qualifying runs will set the entire 33-car lineup including the pole position.

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The excitement of the returning to the “World Greatest Race Track” was in the air Tuesday at the Dreyer & Reinbold Racing garage with drivers Sage Karam and J.R. Hildebrand making their initial oval practice runs for the 102nd Indianapolis 500 Mile Race set May 27.

The DRR squad in the only “One-Off Race Team” at Indy this year, but the Carmel, Ind.-based operation put in a solid day of laps in the hot, humid conditions at the famed Indianapolis Motor Speedway oval. This year marks the first time Dreyer & Reinbold Racing has entered two cars in the “Greatest Spectacle in Racing” since 2011.

Karam, entering his fifth Indy 500 at age 23, drove the No. 24 WIX Filter/DRR Chevrolet to a best lap of 223.998 miles per hour for the sixth fastest speed on opening day. The Nazareth, Pa., racer recorded 60 laps on Tuesday. Karam, the former Indy Lights champion, won the “Hard Charger Award” in his rookie year of 2014 at Indy. He tested at Indy on May 1.

Hildebrand, making his eighth Indy 500 at age 30, wheeled his No. 66 Salesforce/DRR Chevrolet to a best speed of 222.256 m.p.h. for 24th overall in in a total of 55 laps Tuesday. However, the big number for the Boulder, Colo., driver was his “no tow” speed of 221.139, third overall in those clockings behind Ed Carpenter (221.512) and Charlie Kimball (221.155). The “no tow” readings are determined by the car’s performance without a draft from another car.

Hildebrand, also an Indy Lights Champion, finished runner-up in his Indy 500 rookie showing in 2011 and won the “Rookie of the Year” honors. It was J.R.’s first time in an IndyCar since last September.

“Car wasn’t too bad,” said Karam. “It has a really good balance when I ran by myself. So, we started with that and then tried to trim out and gain more speed by myself. Once I felt comfortable there, I ran with traffic. This was the first time I ran in traffic with the new car and it’s interesting. It looks like everyone is dealing with the same issue, which is the lack of front grip.

“These new cars, when you don’t have clean air, you lose a lot of front grip. That’s the battle for everyone right now is to find front grip. Overall, first day back and P6. We’re in the ballpark. Speeds or times don’t mean anything yet, but it’s good to see us high on the pylon is a good feeling. But, it’s early so hopefully we keep it up and we’ll see what happens.”

“I felt good today with the car,” said Hildebrand. “We got up to speed quickly. There are a lot of familiar faces for me here at Dreyer & Reinbold. I made my IndyCar debut with DRR back in 2010. We have a lot of the same guys I have worked with the last few years too at ECR. I felt good with how the car rolled out of the gates and it went from there.”

Cars return to the historic two-and-a-half-mile oval Wednesday beginning at 11 a.m. EDT for a scheduled seven hours of practice. Qualifying is set for Saturday (May 19) and Sunday (May 20) with the 102nd Indy 500 getting underway at 12:15 p.m. EDT on Sunday, May 27.

Dreyer & Reinbold Racing, Indy 500’s Only “One-Off” Team, Prepares Two Entries to Battle the IndyCar Series Regulars on May 27

Dreyer & Reinbold Racing, Indy 500’s Only “One-Off” Team, Prepares Two Entries to Battle the IndyCar Series Regulars on May 27
Sage Karam & JR Hildebrand Set to Challenge in 102nd Indianapolis 500


Sage Karam and the No. 24 WIX Filters Chevrolet from the Dreyer & Reinbold Racing stable in action at an open test at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway (Photo Courtesy of Dreyer & Reinbold Racing)

SPEEDWAY, Ind. (May 11, 2018) – Only one team in this year’s 102nd Indianapolis 500 has concentrated on the May 27 Classic since last year’s 200-lap race at the world’s most famous racing facility, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

That team ready to battle the Verizon IndyCar Series regulars in this year’s Indy 500 is Carmel, Ind.-based Dreyer & Reinbold Racing with a two-car effort – the No. 24 WIX Filters Chevrolet Dallara for driver Sage Karam and the No. 66 Salesforce Chevrolet Dallara for driver J.R. Hildebrand.

It’s not an easy chore for Dennis Reinbold’s racing squad to go up against the biggest teams in the IMS garage area, but the veteran team owner has been facing the challenges for many years and continues to enjoy the quest of winning the world’s biggest race.

For Reinbold, the Indy 500 is a family tradition dating back to 1927 when his grandfather, Floyd “Pop” Dreyer, served as a crewman on the famed Duesenberg racing team. Dreyer was a legendary flat-track motorcycle racer before concentrating on building body kits for the Indy 500 cars in the 1930s and 1940s. In fact, the entire front row of the 1931 Indy 500 utilized Dreyer’s work.

Young Dennis grew up just a mile and a half from the 16th and Georgetown racing plant and would ride his bicycle to see the race cars run in May. In 1999, Reinbold established his legacy as a team owner and has now entered 37 cars and qualified all 37 machines in the 500.

“You can look at our ‘one-off’ effort in two ways as opposed with the regular teams,” said Reinbold. “We can concentrate on our Indy 500 operation pretty much all year and we have a full-time crew for Sage’s car. Then again, if we had the funding for a full race season, we would be in the same situations as the other teams. But I don’t dwell on those possibilities. We come to the Indy 500 once a year right now and we work hard to attempt to win it.”

Reinbold and his staff work diligently to develop a marketing plan for their upcoming year’s sponsor partners not too long after the previous 500 Mile race is concluded. And a two-car operation meant recruiting additional crew members as early as possible.

“We begin working with our sponsor partners in the late summer and fall for the next Indy 500 race,” Dennis explained. “We spoke with JR in the fall also about running with us this May and we firmed it up at the beginning of the year.”

Dennis’s racing operation, led by Chase Selman, works through the potential second car budget and begins aligning crew personnel to work on the second car for the 500.

“As soon as we knew we were thinking of running two cars this year, we were able to lock in a second group pretty quickly,” said Reinbold. “We were able to have crew guys commit to us in late fall last year. That was a big help in coordinating our Indy 500 two-car effort.”

Selman also had to order the new cars, parts and coordinate car renderings with the sponsors with team marketing director Brett DeBord.

“Despite concentrating just on the Indy 500, we are extremely busy in the off-season,” said Selman, whose family has been involved in IndyCar racing for some 30 years. “Putting together a ‘one-off’ Indy 500 program still takes a lot of coordination and preparation to be ready to take on the best teams in IndyCar racing. I think we have developed a good team in 2018.”

Karam, the young Nazareth, Pa., racer, enters his fourth Indy 500 with DRR (fifth total) and has been a fast racer in recent years at Indy. The 23-year-old driver is ready for the 500 again.

“My experience with Dreyer & Reinbold Racing has been outstanding over the years,” Karam said. “My rookie year in 2014, we kept coming back from adversity and passing cars. I think I passed the most cars in the race that year. In 2016, we came from 23rd to fourth in just 90 laps. We had a great car and I needed to be more patient. Now, with J.R. as a teammate, this team can be a factor in the 500.”

Hildebrand, the 2011 500 runner-up and Rookie of the Year, began his IndyCar career with DRR in 2010 with two starts (Mid-Ohio and Sonoma), and the Boulder, Colo., driver returns to the team after watching DRR and Karam perform well at Indy.

“I talked with Dennis last year and I knew his cars were fast in the 500,” said Hildebrand. “I raced with Sage the last two years and I couldn’t stay with him. I was impressed with the car’s pace and knew the team was good despite being a ‘one-race’ organization currently. Working with Sage feels like a good fit too. I’m anxious to drive the DRR car for Salesforce next week.”

Karam was able to test last week at IMS in an afternoon session, and Reinbold is pleased with the finds of his new race car.

“We were fortunate to run Sage last week in the test with our new car including the new body kit, new electronics, new brakes and several other new pieces,” Reinbold said. “The full-time teams hold an advantage over us with the early problems being detected at the first few races of the year. Last week, we did have some initial problems with the car systems, but we were able to run Sage for 45 laps and with two sets of tires. We did learn quite a bit about the car with that initial test.

“That test gave us a good lead into what we need when the practice gets underway next Tuesday. I am excited to have Sage and J.R. working together this year for our DRR team.”

Can the only “one-race” team in the 102nd Indy 500 pull off the unthinkable against the strong regular IndyCar operations?

“I know we have a solid, professional operation here,” said Reinbold. “If we can get the new car running like the old car the past few years, we can contend with the top teams. I’m not being cocky in saying that. I believe Sage and J.R. can race up front this year.”

Source: Team PR

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Former Indy Lights Champ Ready to Team with Hildebrand in May 27 Classic


SPEEDWAY, Ind. (May 9, 2018) – It’s hard to imagine that young Sage Karam is entering his fifth Indianapolis 500 Mile Race on May 27 and he just turned 23 years old.

Driving the No. 24 WIX Filters Dreyer & Reinbold Racing Chevrolet this month, Karam is still one of the youngest racers in the 35-driver lineup for the “Greatest Spectacle in Racing.” But the former Indy Lights and USF2000 series champion from Nazareth, Pa., has become a veteran at the legendary two-and-a-half mile oval.

Karam might admit his youthful exuberance has gotten the better of him in recent Indy 500 performances, but Sage’s attitude has changed for the 102nd running of the world’s biggest motorsports event.

“I seem more relaxed and calmer this year coming to Indy,” said Karam. “So, I’m always excited to come to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, but, this time, I’m coming into the month of May with the thinking of a veteran. This year, I have a teammate in J.R. (Hildebrand in the No. 66 Salesforce/DRR Chevrolet) and we believe we can work together to develop a good car for the race. The last few years we have been a single-car effort. Now, with two cars, Dreyer & Reinbold Racing has put together a strong group to battle for the win.”

Karam, who drove in his first Indy 500 after turning age 19, made a sensational “rookie” drive from 31st to ninth in the 2014 race for Dreyer & Reinbold Racing and was named “Hard Charger” of the event. In 2016, Sage came from 23rd to fourth before the halfway point of the 200-lap classic before a mishap took him out of the action. Last year, he went from 21st to tenth but retiring with a mechanical issue.

“I have had some good runs at Indianapolis with DRR and their cars are always great in the race,” Karam explained. “I know that is one of the reasons J.R. came over to the team this year. He said he couldn’t keep up with me in the last few races. We need to get to the finish this year. If we can get the new (race car) body kit working like the last one, I feel confident about our chances.”

Karam’s much more relaxed attitude has impressed his DRR crew and especially team owner Dennis Reinbold, who grew up only a mile or so from IMS and has seen many talent drivers at the famed Brickyard.

“From the first race in 2014 with our team, you knew Sage had sensational talent,” said Reinbold, who has entered and qualified 37 entries at Indy as a team owner. “And we also knew he was young and too aggressive at times. I see a different young driver coming to Indy this year. Sage has worked very well with our engineering staff (led by veteran Jeff Britton) and our crew for the past few years, and the race performance has shown that. We have had the speed most of the time and Sage has moved to the front. Now, he shows that he is a calculated young driver who has the experience to race with the leaders. With Sage and J.R., I’m excited about this combination this year in the 500.”

Hildebrand, who enters his eighth Indy 500 this year, has seen the progression of Karam with the DRR team the last few years as well.

“Sage has done a pretty job on his own for the past few years,” J.R. said. “You can see from a distance that he has gone through a learning process too.  Sage has shown that he can perform and, when things come together for him with a good race car, that he can go very fast.

The DRR cars have been super quick in the past few years at Indy. At ECR the last few years, we have been staring down those guys just as much as the Penske guys when it comes to the 500 to figure who we had to beat in the Chevy camp.

“I can see from the outside that the Dreyer & Reinbold guys were doing some things different. There were situations on race day when I got blown off by Sage at some point and there was no way I was going to hang on with him. I’m looking forward to working with Sage.  I think it is a good fit.”

Karam and Hildebrand hit the IMS oval for official practice runs on Tuesday, May 15. Qualifying for the 102nd running of the Indy 500 is set for Saturday, May 19, and Sunday, May 20.  The start for this year’s Indianapolis 500-Mile Race is scheduled for 12:15 p.m. EDT on Sunday, May 27.

Source: Team PR

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Mecum Auctions Returns as Foundation Partner with Dreyer & Reinbold Racing

In 102nd Indianapolis 500 With Drivers Sage Karam & J.R. Hildebrand Mecum Auctions Set for Another Big May with Fairgrounds Auction & Indy 500   WALWORTH, Wis. (May 8, 2018) – Mecum Auctions, the world’s largest collector-car auction company, announced today that it will return with Dreyer & Reinbold Racing as a Foundation Partner for the…

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Dreyer & Reinbold Racing Teams with Loftus Robinson For Fourth Time at 102nd Indianapolis 500

The local developer’s latest project, Wilshaw, is under construction on 16th and Main across from IMS  SPEEDWAY, Ind. (April 24, 2018) – Dreyer & Reinbold Racing announced today that Indianapolis-based commercial real estate developer Loftus Robinson will be a major associate partner with the team for the fourth consecutive year in the 102nd Indianapolis 500 Mile Race set…

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WIX Filters Announces Official Partnership with Dreyer & Reinbold Racing for 102nd Indianapolis 500 and Young Racer Sage Karam

GASTONIA, N.C. (March 1, 2018)WIX® Filters, a global manufacturer of filtration products, announced today that it will serve as chief technical partner for Dreyer & Reinbold Racing’s No. 24 Indy 500 entry with young driver Sage Karam in the 102nd Running of the Indianapolis 500.

WIX Filters, now in its 79th year of production, and Dreyer & Reinbold Racing are entering their sixth year of a multi-level partnership, including serving as the Official Technical Partner and oil filter of the team, within several racing forms including the Indy 500 and Red Bull Global Rallycross.

“DRR has been a phenomenal partner for WIX the past few years and we are thrilled to continue that relationship at the world’s biggest auto race,” said Jennifer Gibson, brand manager for WIX. “Sage Karam has been a charger at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in his first Indy 500 events. We can’t wait to see him drive the No. 24 WIX Filters IndyCar at more than 230 mph in May.”

Race teams have relied on the quality and performance of WIX Filters for 60 years, and in return, the track provides exceptional R&D testing grounds for WIX engineers.

Dreyer & Reinbold Racing, which has entered and qualified 36 cars in the Indy 500 dating back to 1999, has run single-car entries in the Indy 500 for the past six years after being a multi-car operation through 2011. Now DRR enters Karam with the new Verizon IndyCar Series body kits for the Dallara cars.

“We are very pleased to bring WIX Filters to the Indianapolis 500 with Sage for the ‘Greatest Spectacle in Racing’ in 2018,” said Dennis Reinbold, team owner of the Indy-based DRR organization. “WIX Filters has been a great technical partner for many years and we are thrilled to have the company back for this great race.  WIX is a valued sponsor and has made numerous valuable contributions to Dreyer & Reinbold Racing, both on and off the race track through our six-year partnership. The WIX brand means quality and performance, which is what we’re all about. We hope to put WIX Filters in the winner’s circle in 2018.”

“Sage has become a strong competitor for us in his three previous races with our team,” continued Reinbold. “And he has shown the potential to contend for the coveted victory at the Brickyard. Now, I feel confident about our chances with Sage.”

Like WIX Filters in racing, the Dreyer and Reinbold Racing family has an impressive legacy at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway dating back to the 1920s with legendary car builder Floyd “Pop” Dreyer. Reinbold, Dreyer’s grandson, has served as a car owner in the Indy 500 since 1999 and has recorded four top-10 finishes including a best of fourth in 2012.

“It’s always exciting to enter and prepare for the world’s biggest auto race,” said Karam, who came from 31st to ninth as an Indy 500 rookie in 2014. “It’s great to have a global brand like WIX Filters come with us to this year’s Indy 500. WIX Filters has helped race teams at all levels win and they are perfect to be a part of our 2018 team.”

“This year marks my fourth appearance at the Brickyard with the Dreyer & Reinbold team and I have produced a contending car each year.  I expect that to be the case this year.  I’m anxious to try the new IndyCar body kits on the legendary 2 1/2-mile oval this May.”

Karam, the 22-year-old driver from Nazareth, Pennsylvania, will enter his fifth Indy 500 and fourth with the Dreyer & Reinbold Racing team. Sage won the “Hard Charger Award” as rookie competitor in the 2015 Indy 500 and put on a sensational drive from 23rd to fourth in 2016 before retiring from the event on lap 94 in DRR machinery. Karam won the Indy Lights point championship in 2013.

Karam will take the No. 24 WIX Filters DRR Dallara IndyCar to the IMS oval for the first time on Tuesday, May 15 when practice rounds open on the famed oval.  Qualifying for the 102nd running of the Indy 500 is set for Saturday, May 19 and Sunday, May 20.  The start for this year’s Indianapolis 500-Mile Race is scheduled for 12:15 p.m. EDT on Sunday, May 27.

For more information on WIX, please visit

Source: Team PR

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Sage Karam’s Fourth Indy 500 Run Cut Short with an Alternator Problem; Youngest Driver in the Field Drove a Solid Race to P12 at lap 125


Karam’s radio microphone went out early in the race too

SPEEDWAY, Ind. (May 29, 2017) – Sage Karam’s Indy 500 run fell short Sunday when an alternator problem forced the 22-year-old driver out of the 101st edition of the “Greatest Spectacle in Racing” at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

Karam, who started 21st in the 200-lap classic, moved steadily up to the 33-car field to 12th at the halfway point of the race before the No. 24 Mecum Auctions Dreyer & Reinbold Chevrolet Dallara stopped on track at lap 125. Karam finished 28th in 33-driver field.

Early in the race, Karam’s communication with his crew was hampered when his radio microphone failed and the Dennis Reinbold-led team had to communicate with Sage through code and hand signals. Corner spotters Aaron Nelson and Gregg Grahn talked with Karam for the adjustments needed for his race car.

Driving in his fourth Indy 500, Karam drove consistently in playing a conservative game through the first 100 laps. And the DRR crew was quick in the pits, as Karam was able to pick up positions after each of the team’s four pit stops.

“We had an alternator let go and there was nothing we can do,” said Karam. “It’s unfortunate, but that’s what happens here. I thought we ran a smart race. A lot of people were doing risky things out there. I just wanted to finish the whole race. We were on pace to do that. We had a top-ten car today. I was driving smart and I was as calm as I could be. It’s unfortunate when something out of your control happens and you can’t fix it, but there’s nothing you can do about it. My DDR crew was outstanding in the pit stops today.

“I had no radio communication with my team from the start of the race. I could hear them. They couldn’t hear me so we had to work on a code to communicate with each other on the fly. Just keying up on the radio for yes or no on the radio and turning fuel mixtures for more wing, less wing, rear wing and front wing. So it was kind of sketchy out there but we were doing okay. It’s a shame – the DRR boys, Mecum Auto Auctions put together a great car this month. It’s tough to see it go down like that. But that’s racing. The beauty of this place is it makes you want to come back more and more because you go through all these hard times. You just want to win.”

Karam will now return to his regular racing program, the Lexus program for 3GT Racing in the IMSA WeatherTech Sports Car Championship, next weekend in the streets of Belle Isle in Detroit.

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Sage Karam comfortable with Mecum Auctions DRR Chevy during “Carb Day” testing runs; Now ready for Sunday’s Indy 500

Sage Karam comfortable with Mecum Auctions DRR Chevy

During “Carb Day” testing runs, Ready for Sunday’s Indy 500

Karam also competes in TAG Heuer Pit Stop Challenge

SPEEDWAY, Ind. (May 26, 2017) –  Sage Karam jumped from his No. 24 Mecum Auctions DRR Chevrolet Friday with a smile on his face in “Carb Day” practice runs as he prepared for the 101st Indianapolis 500-Mile Race at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

The 22-year-old driver from Nazareth, Pa., clocked in 33 laps in the one-hour practice session Friday in the final tests for the 33-car field before Sunday’s “Greatest Spectacle in Racing.”

Karam, entering his fourth Indy 500, will be the youngest driver in Sunday’s lineup and was pleased overall with his car’s handling around the 2.5-mile legendary oval. Sage clocked a best speed of 224.852 miles per hour, the 18th best of the day.

Karam will start 21st in Sunday’s Indy 500 when the 200-lap classic drops the green flag at 12:15 p.m. EDT.

“It was a good practice week and a good month overall so far,” said Karam. “It’s good going into the race with no damages or crashes in the month. That’s a big plus. I’m feeling good about the car. It feels the same as it did when we unloaded, so that’s excellent. Practice felt very good today.

“For some reason, the track had less grip than usual. I’m not sure if it’s because of the rain or the tire wear from the Indy Lights cars. A lot of people seemed to struggle with that today. But, I think we have a good race car like we did last year. I’m looking forward to Sunday.”

Karam and his DDR “Over the wall” crew also participated in the TAG Heuer Pit Stop Challenge Friday afternoon at IMS.  Unfortunately, Sage and his team was defeated in the opening round by Helio Castroneves and his Team Penske crew.

Castroneves, the three-time Indy 500 winner, recorded the fastest speed in the “Carb Day” practice with a speed of 227.377 m.p.h.

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      Over the past 20-something years writing about racing, I’ve encountered three people from whom I learn something about the art of racecar driving every time we speak for longer than five minutes. One of that trio is Rick Ravon Mears, born this day 65 years ago in Wichita, Kansas, and brought up in Bakersfield, Calif. […]
    • Memoir helps widow cope after IndyCar driver's death
      Tonya Bergeson-Dana talks with her son, Conor, about his father when he brings it up, which is often. If he’s asking the questions, she reasons, he’s ready to hear the answers. Paul Conor Dana, at age 9, knows that his father was Paul Dana, a journalist and IndyCar driver who died in March 2006 during […]