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Indy 500 Qualifying: Andretti Autosport, Honda rule in first runs

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Indy 500 Qualifying: Andretti Autosport, Honda rule in first runs
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Marco Andretti leads an Andretti Autosport-Honda 1-2-3-4 after all 33 entrants have completed their initial qualifying runs, and only one Chevrolet-powered car is currently set to make Sunday’s Fast Nine Shootout.

Despite running 28th and therefore with the disadvantage of a far hotter track than his principal opponents, Marco Andretti – delivered the only 232mph lap of the session so far, shed 1.4mph across his four laps, but edged the previous best average of Ryan Hunter-Reay by 0.021mph.

Alexander Rossi and James Hinchcliffe – in his third and last outing of the season (for now) in the Genesys car – completed the top four.

One of the surprises of the session was Rinus VeeKay in the Ed Carpenter Racing-Chevrolet who was admittedly an early runner, but made the most of it to outpace Scott Dixon of Chip Ganassi Racing-Honda.

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Another deeply impressive performance came from Alex Palou of Dale Coyne Racing with Team Goh, who shrugged off the slick track conditions of a hot afternoon to deliver P7 – ahead of all three Rahal Letterman Lanigan cars that had been blessed with the first, second and fifth runs of the day.

Josef Newgarden is top Team Penske-Chevrolet but only 13th, while teammate Will Power went in a different set up direction by stripping downforce, but while this worked on Lap 1, his speed drop off was far greater. The 2018 Indy winner currently sits only 22nd, albeit ahead of his other teammates, fellow 500 winners Simon Pagenaud and Helio Castroneves who were unlucky enough to draw a low number and ran in some of the worst conditions.

Fernando Alonso’s Ruoff Arrow McLaren SP-Chevy didn’t appear to misbehave – unlike, say, J.R. Hildebrand and Castroneves who had to save some alarming moments – but he currently sits in 26th.

Qualifying attempts can continue until 4.50pm ET, before positions 10-33 are set, and the participants in the Fast Nine battle are decided.

Indy 500 Initial qualifying runs

P Driver Car Engine Lap 1 Lap 2 Lap 3 Lap 4 Average
1. Marco Andretti Andretti Herta Autosport Honda 232.177 231.559 230.968 230.705 231.351
2. Ryan Hunter-Reay Andretti Autosport Honda 231.653 231.506 231.219 230.944 231.330
3. Alexander Rossi Andretti Autosport Honda 231.886 231.497 230.879 230.812 231.268
4. James Hinchcliffe Andretti Autosport Honda 231.790 231.393 231.048 230.553 231.195
5. Rinus VeeKay Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet 231.789 231.029 230.888 230.753 231.114
6. Scott Dixon Chip Ganassi Racing Honda 231.787 231.160 230.911 230.520 231.094
7. Alex Palou Dale Coyne Racing w/ Team Goh 231.552 231.211 230.808 230.566 231.034
8. Graham Rahal Rahal Letterman Lanigan Honda 231.102 230.876 230.740 230.572 230.822
9. Takuma Sato Rahal Letterman Lanigan Honda 231.244 230.763 230.710 230.454 230.792
10. Colton Herta Andretti Harding Steinbrenner Autosport 231.135 230.658 230.314 230.134 230.560
11. Spencer Pigot Citrone/Buhl Autosport with RLL Honda 231.325 230.850 230.261 229.727 230.539
12. Marcus Ericsson Chip Ganassi Racing Honda 231.061 230.576 230.299 229.954 230.472
13. Josef Newgarden Team Penske Chevrolet 230.431 230.408 230.316 230.031 230.296
14. Felix Rosenqvist Chip Ganassi Racing Honda 230.639 230.205 230.153 230.021 230.254
15. Zach Veach Andretti Autosport Honda 230.644 230.071 229.685 229.447 229.961  
16. Santino Ferrucci Dale Coyne Racing w/ Vasser-Sullivan Honda 230.455 230.075 229.588 229.578 229.924
17. Pato O'Ward Arrow McLaren SP Chevrolet 230.712 230.165 229.422 229.314 229.902
18. Conor Daly Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet 231.053 230.210 229.846 228.443 229.884
19. Jack Harvey Meyer Shank Racing Honda 229.111 229.041 228.841 228.526 229.861
20. Ed Carpenter Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet 231.390 230.359 229.894 227.633 229.811
21. Oliver Askew Arrow McLaren SP Chevrolet 230.304 229.855 229.517 229.367 229.760
22. Will Power Team Penske Chevrolet 230.343 229.769 229.472 229.225 229.701
23. Tony Kanaan A.J. Foyt Racing Chevrolet 229.920 229.342 228.860 228.501 229.154
24. Dalton Kellett A.J. Foyt Racing Chevrolet 229.111 229.041 228.841 228.526 228.880
25. Simon Pagenaud Team Penske Chevrolet 229.529 229.229 229.032 227.563 228.836
26. Fernando Alonso Ruoff Arrow McLaren SP Chevrolet 229.418 228.846 228.520 228.291 228.768
27. James Davison Dale Coyne Racing w/ RWR/Byrd/Belardi Honda 230.957 230.267 227.771 226.061 228.747
28. Helio Castroneves Team Penske Chevrolet 228.652 228.169 227.990 227.652 228.115
29. Charlie Kimball A.J. Foyt Racing Chevrolet 229.677 229.399 228.980 223.108 227.758
30. Sage Karam Dreyer & Reinbold Racing Chevrolet 227.609 227.267 226.940 226.583 227.009
31. J.R. Hildebrand Dreyer & Reinbold Racing Chevrolet 228.594 225.328 225.980 225.494 226.341
32. Max Chilton Carlin Chevrolet 227.218 225.844 225.700 224.531 225.819
33. Ben Hanley DragonSpeed Chevrolet 222.617 221.764 219.963 219.469 220.946
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About this article

Series IndyCar
Event Indy 500
Author David Malsher-Lopez