Elkhart Lake, Wisc. – With just two 30-minute practice sessions available to the teams and drivers of the Cooper Tires USF2000 series, a big key to success would be adapting quickly to the 14-turn, 4.084-mile natural terrain road course.
The John Cummiskey Racing team drivers did just that Thursday, finding speed in Practice 2 ahead of Friday’s qualifying session and Saturday’s doubleheader of races.
Other than a track walk on Wednesday night, Lucas Kohl, driver of the No. 34 Belko Trading car, had never seen Road America, and Ayla Agren, driver of the No. 33 Energima car, had last been to the track when she drove in the Skip Barber series in 2012. While they had spent some time in a simulator in Indianapolis earlier in the week, there was a lot to learn Thursday morning.
In Practice 1, conducted under cloudy skies and temperatures in the mid-60s, Agren improved close to a second per lap in the early going, finishing eighth on the speed chart with a time of 2 minutes, 13.6655 seconds for an average speed of 108.109 mph. Kohl finished the session searching for a little more speed, standing 20th overall in 2:18.7361 (104.157 mph).
Both saw their standing on the charts improve in Practice 2, as Agren jumped into the Top 5 early on and finished fourth with a time of 2:12.3122 (109.214 mph), just .4 seconds back of session leader Jordan Lloyd. Kohl showed an almost six-second improvement, moving up to ninth in 2:12.9500 (108.690).
Both drivers completed 16 laps over the course of the practice sessions.
Friday’s 30-minute qualifying session will begin at 10:15 a.m. (CDT).
Practice 1 – 2:13.6655 (108.109 mph), 8th
Practice 2 – 2:12:3122 (109.214), 4th
Driver quote: Practice went really well. There were many things to learn in the first session, and the second session we stepped up and really started pushing. We pushed as much as we could in Practice 2 and got really good data for tomorrow.
Practice 1 – 2:18.7361 (104.157), 20th
Practice 2 – 2:12.9500 (108.690), 9th
Driver quote: Since it’s my first time every here, the first session was tough, but we ended the day with a Top 10, and got a good base for qualifying. I used the first session to get familiar with the track, and the second to push faster. I think we have a good base for the car, our setup is good, and I think we can do well.