Speedway, Ind. – Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires driver Aaron Telitz will become the first to do the “Carb Day Double” this Friday when he drives in both the Freedom 100 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and the Cooper Tires Freedom 75 at Lucas Oil Raceway.
Telitz, who won his first race in the Mazda Road to Indy Presented by Cooper Tires at Lucas Oil Raceway in 2014 driving for ArmsUp Motorsports, has been working with the team this season, helping Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship Powered by Mazda rookie driver Keith Donegan learn the series and the Tatuus USF-17. When the opportunity arose to race, the Rice Lake, Wisconsin native jumped at the chance.
“I love driving, and if I have the chance to drive a race car, I won’t turn it down,” said Telitz. “I’ve been doing some testing with ArmsUp this year to help out their new drivers, so when the opportunity to put me in the car for the oval came up, it made sense for all of us. It will be fun for me and it will be good for Keith to have an experienced teammate there.
“(Team engineer) John Walko and I won at Lucas Oil Raceway four years ago, in my first year in USF2000, so I’m interested in getting back there and running with them. I know we’ll do well, and the new car is really fun to drive, so it will be a good addition to my week in Indy.”
Telitz was one of the first drivers to test the USF-17, helping Pabst Racing come to grips with the new car soon after it came out. Recognizing that he has changed as a person and as a driver, Telitz looks forward to testing his skills in the familiar setting.
“I’m different and of course, the car is different. I’ve driven the USF-17 quite a bit. It is a great car – just sitting in it, you feel as though you’re in a modern race car and I think that’s exciting for kids who get into the series. There’s less downforce and that’s an exciting thing, especially on an oval. The aero used to help a lot on the old car but we don’t have that anymore, so there may be more sliding around. And there are a lot of cars, so it will be interesting to see what happens.”
Telitz will begin his Carb Day double driving in the 16th Freedom 100 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. With a second-place finish in the race last season, Telitz hopes to do one better this year – even working on the timing required should he have to factor in a trip to Victory Lane at the Brickyard.
“We’ll do the race at IMS, I’ll get done in Victory Lane, do the media activities then hop in my car, head over to LOR and see what we can do with the ArmsUp boys. I’m in good physical shape, so that part won’t be a problem. The race at LOR will actually be more physical than the race at IMS: in the Freedom 100, it’s more a matter of holding it to the floor and playing chess with everyone, employing more of the mental game. At LOR, the speeds are slower, but the corners are much tighter, and the track is much bumpier. IMS is as smooth as silk.
“It really does take me back to my roots – and if I have the opportunity to drive a race car, I’m always going to do it!”
Qualifying for the Freedom 100 will take place Thursday at 1:30 p.m., while qualifying for the Cooper Tires 75 will be Friday at 2:30 p.m. The Freedom 100 Indy Lights race will be broadcast live on NBCSN beginning at 12:10 p.m. EDT on Friday, while the Freedom 75 will be live streamed on the Road to Indy TV app and USF2000.com at 6:05 p.m.