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Indy 500: Dixon fastest at 229.107mph as weather halts practice

Scott Dixon led the brief morning portion of an altered practice for the 108th Running of the Indianapolis 500 before rain showers brought the session to a halt.

Scott Dixon, Chip Ganassi Racing Honda

Photo by: Penske Entertainment

The six-time IndyCar Series champion and 2008 winner of the Indy 500, Dixon scorched around the 2.5-mile Indianapolis Motor Speedway with a flying lap of 229.107mph in the No. 9 Chip Ganassi Racing Honda.

Despite being an Indy-only entry, Marco Andretti got comfortable right out of the gate and delivered the second-fastest lap in the No. 98 Andretti Herta Honda that was only 0.1218s off the mark set by Dixon.

Takuma Sato, who is also only contesting the Indy 500, an event he has won twice before, was third at a distant 0.6194s in the No. 75 Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing (RLL) Honda.

Arrow McLaren’s Pato O’Ward, the top Chevrolet runner, was fourth at 0.7183s behind, following by RLL’s Christian Lundgaard in fifth at 0.9237s back.

The ominous clouds held off the rain long enough for roughly 23 minutes of on-track activity before unleashing enough moisture to put an early end to the session.

With that, the morning session that was originally schedule for two hours (from 9am-11am ET) saw Race Control cancel the break and extended practice to the end of the day (6pm ET), weather permitting.

Only three no-tow speeds were recorded, with Team Penske’s Scott McLaughlin nailing the best pace at 219.656 mph. He was following by the No. 60 Meyer Shank Racing Honda of Felix Rosenqvist, who ran a best of 219.230mph. RLL’s Pietro Fittipaldi was third at 216.137mph.

Josef Newgarden, the reigning Indy 500 champion, saw a rough start to his defense after a technical issue was found with a bad sensor on his installation lap and was not able to get any running.

“We got an issue, we're diagnosing,” he added. “We just got a sensor that's off right now.”

Kyle Larson, the 2021 NASCAR Cup Series champion, began his Month of May quest at the Brickyard by being 27th on the leaderboard, running only two installation laps as he got used to the systems of coming on and off pit lane in his No. 17 Arrow McLaren/Rick Hendrick Chevrolet.

“It's definitely good,” Larson said. “Even at this point, I've gotten more today than I thought I would, so just getting to leave the pit lane a couple times, it was good; all that. As we get to tomorrow, we get like a clean day of running, I'll be able to learn probably a lot. I would think so.

“Wish I would've got more laps there, but overall, I'm still just happy to be here and I think they (IndyCar) said we have like 30-some more hours of practice, so hopefully that's enough time for me.”

Of note, Juncos Hollinger Racing’s Romain Grosjean was the first driver on track and ended up 14th 221.098mph flying lap.

Since 1984, the driver to go out on track first has never won the Indy 500 and only finished second once (Marco Andretti, 2006) and only qualified on pole twice (Helio Castroneves, 2010; Ryan Briscoe, 2012).

   
1
 - 
3
   
Cla Driver # Laps Time Interval Mph
1 New Zealand S. Dixon Chip Ganassi Racing 9 9

39.2829

  229.107
2 United States M. Andretti Andretti Herta Autosport with Marco & Curb-Agajani 98 12

+0.1218

39.4047

0.1218 228.399
3 Japan T. Sato Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing 75 6

+0.6194

39.9023

0.4976 225.551
4 Mexico P. O'Ward Arrow McLaren 5 11

+0.7183

40.0012

0.0989 224.993
5 Denmark C. Lundgaard Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing 45 7

+0.9237

40.2066

0.2054 223.844
6 Brazil H. Castroneves Meyer Shank Racing with Curb-Agajanian 06 10

+0.9552

40.2381

0.0315 223.669
7 United States C. Herta Andretti Global with Curb-Agajanian 26 7

+1.0607

40.3436

0.1055 223.084
8 Sweden F. Rosenqvist Meyer Shank Racing 60 13

+1.2263

40.5092

0.1656 222.172
9 United States K. Kirkwood Andretti Global 27 13

+1.2694

40.5523

0.0431 221.936
10
R. Robb A.J. Foyt Enterprises
41 5

+1.2829

40.5658

0.0135 221.862
11 United Kingdom C. Ilott Arrow McLaren 6 10

+1.2957

40.5786

0.0128 221.792
12 Sweden M. Ericsson Andretti Global 28 12

+1.2983

40.5812

0.0026 221.778
13 United States R. Hunter-Reay Dreyer & Reinbold Racing/Cusick Motorsports 23 9

+1.3125

40.5954

0.0142 221.700
14 France R. Grosjean Juncos Hollinger Racing 77 8

+1.4230

40.7059

0.1105 221.098
15 United States C. Daly Dreyer & Reinbold Racing/Cusick Motorsports 24 8

+1.4626

40.7455

0.0396 220.883
16 United States E. Carpenter Ed Carpenter Racing 20 7

+1.4635

40.7464

0.0009 220.878
17 United Kingdom T. Blomqvist Meyer Shank Racing 66 12

+1.4675

40.7504

0.0040 220.857
18 New Zealand S. McLaughlin Team Penske 3 13

+1.5701

40.8530

0.1026 220.302
19 United States A. Rossi Arrow McLaren 7 5

+1.6032

40.8861

0.0331 220.124
20 Argentina A. Canapino Juncos Hollinger Racing 78 7

+1.8483

41.1312

0.2451 218.812
21
C. Rasmussen Ed Carpenter Racing
33 4

+1.9480

41.2309

0.0997 218.283
22
N. Siegel Dale Coyne Racing
18 11

+2.0084

41.2913

0.0604 217.964
23 United States S. Ferrucci A.J. Foyt Enterprises 14 3

+2.0629

41.3458

0.0545 217.676
24 United States G. Rahal Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing 15 6

+2.2346

41.5175

0.1717 216.776
25 Brazil P. Fittipaldi Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing 30 4

+2.3573

41.6402

0.1227 216.137
26 Netherlands R. van Kalmthout Ed Carpenter Racing 21 3

+2.7614

42.0443

0.4041 214.060
27 United States K. Larson Arrow McLaren/Rick Hendrick 17 2

+20.7694

1'00.0523

18.0080 149.869
28 United States J. Newgarden Team Penske 2 1

+35.8788

1'15.1617

15.1094 119.742
29 Australia W. Power Team Penske 12 1

+36.2433

1'15.5262

0.3645 119.164

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