Mostly sunny and warm weather greeted 32 Verizon IndyCar Series drivers on the second day of practice for the 101st Running of the Indianapolis 500 with Will Power setting the fastest overall lap at the conclusion of the six-hour session.
- RESULTS: 2017 Indianapolis 500 Practice 2
Power’s fastest lap of the 2.5-mile superspeedway came near the tail end of his 58 laps turned. The 224.656 mph revolution, while well short of Marco Andretti’s chart-topping pace on Monday, was good enough to keep him atop the leaderboard.
Teammate to Power and three-time Indianapolis 500 champion Helio Castroneves laid down the second-fastest lap of the day, coming in at 224.287 mph in the No. 3 Team Penske Chevrolet.
Gabby Chaves, driving for new team Harding Racing, gave Chevrolet a sweep of the top three speeds with a lap at 223.991 mph. The Colombian driver’s 85th lap, out of 87 total, was the one that placed him near the top of the timesheet.
“Yesterday, we did, I think, three laps on track and then three more out and in, and that wasn’t good,” said Chaves after practice. “Obviously, our guys were disappointed that we didn’t really do any laps.
“Today we had to kind of bounce back from that and right away work on the car and improve it and show some speed. That’s the direction you want to be heading in. We’re happy.
“Obviously, we’ve still got plenty of work ahead of us, and I think if we just keep doing what we’re doing, we should be able to be in a good spot for the race.”
Ryan Hunter-Reay ended the day’s running as the fastest Honda in the field, propelling the No. 28 Andretti Autosport machine to a speed of 223.960 mph to slot into the fourth position for the day. Unlike the Japanese marque’s domination of the top 10 on Monday, Tuesday’s on-track action saw just two other Honda-powered cars join Hunter-Reay in the top third of the speed chart.
Sage Karam put his Dreyer & Reinbold Racing Chevrolet on the fifth row of the Practice 2 results with a speed of 223.641 mph in his Mecum Auctions-sponsored No. 24 car.
Takuma Sato, Mikhail Aleshin, Simon Pagenaud, JR Hildebrand and Josef Newgarden completed the top 10.
The day’s busiest driver was Fernando Alonso. The Spaniard turned 117 laps in the No. 29 Honda prepared by Andretti Autosport with backing from McLaren. Alonso spent some time running in simulated traffic with teammates Sato, Marco Andretti and Alexander Rossi. With all laps counted, Alonso’s best was 221.029 mph, good enough for 24th out of 32 drivers.
Buddy Lazier, the 33rd driver in the field, did not make an appearance on Tuesday. When he does make it on track, his car will sport a new designation, now the No. 44.
Carpenter Leads No-Tow Speeds
The no-tow speed chart exhibited more parity between the two manufacturers with five Chevrolets and five Hondas each in the top 10 and the top eight all reaching speeds exceeding 220 mph.
Ed Carpenter, back at home in the No. 20 machine for Ed Carpenter Racing, put Chevrolet on top with a speed of 222.842 mph. Teammate Hildebrand came in third fastest with a speed of 221.015 mph.
The pair was split by Charlie Kimball, the fastest Honda on the no-tow leaderboard at 221.208 mph. Kimball’s Chip Ganassi Racing teammates Scott Dixon and Tony Kanaan also placed in the top 10 with the fifth- and 10th-fastest laps, respectively.
Power, Juan Pablo Montoya and Simon Pagenaud represented Team Penske in the top 10 by slotting into the fourth, sixth and eighth no-tow positions, respectively.
Sebastien Bourdais had the seventh-fastest no-tow lap while Alexander Rossi filled the ninth spot.
The track will be open for a third day of Indy 500 practice from noon to 6 p.m. EDT on Wednesday with live streaming available at INDYCAR Race Control.