O’Ward takes spoils in practice at WWT Raceway

As the NTT Indycar Series comes down from the high of the Indianapolis 500 a week ago, they now face a tricky double-header at World Wide Technology Raceway for the Bommarito Automotive Group 500.

The weekend began with the only practice session the teams will get, with 90 minutes for the teams to get their setups spot on for Saturday’s race, the first of two which will both be during the day for the first time at this oval.

Pato O’Ward has been very impressive so far in 2020 and he was the man to beat in practice, topping the session for his Arrow McLaren SP team with the only lap above the 181 mph barrier.

The Mexican came close to his first Indycar win early in the year at Road America until Felix Rosenqvist snatched it away so he will be keen to convert this speed into a good qualifying and then race.

Will Power is a former winner at the WWT Raceway and looked ominously fast again ending the session second quickest ahead of series leader Scott Dixon who dominated the Indy 500 but to no avail.

He was beaten to his second 500 win by Takuma Sato – who claimed his own second Borg-Warner Trophy – and the Japanese racer was still on cloud nine as he ended the day fifth.

He was behind the sole Carlin entry again piloted by Conor Daly. The Indiana native won his first Indycar pole with the British team at Iowa and backed up the team’s potential again with fourth.

Jack Harvey has been getting stronger and stronger as the year progresses and in sixth, was the highest-placed Andretti Autosport affiliated driver in the field with Colton Herta the next best in tenth.

Alex Palou continues to rewrite what a rookie can do as he was seventh fastest for Dale Coyne Racing. He was the only driver to run over 100 laps as his teammate Santino Ferrucci was parked early with technical issues.

Marcus Ericsson is looking to right the wrongs of last week’s 500 after crashing his Chip Ganassi Racing car. He was eighth quickest ahead of the exciting Rinus VeeKay for Ed Carpenter Racing.

Many names you’d expect to see towards the sharp end weren’t quite at the races; Alexander Rossi (11th), Josef Newgarden (12th), Simon Pagenaud (18th) and Ryan Hunter-Reay (19th) will all be hoping for much better come qualifying tomorrow.

Pos. Name Team Lap Speed (mph)
1 Pato O’Ward Arrow McLaren SP 181.532
2 Will Power Team Penske 180.961
3 Scott Dixon Chip Ganassi Racing 180.822
4 Conor Daly Carlin 180:581
5 Takuma Sato Rahal Letterman Lanigan 180:434
6 Jack Harvey Meyer Shank Racing 180:246
7 Alex Palou Dale Coyne Racing 180:182
8 Marcus Ericsson Chip Ganassi Racing 180:157
9 Rinus VeeKay Ed Carpenter Racing 180:104
10 Colton Herta Andretti Harding Steinbrenner 179:835
11 Alexander Rossi Andretti Autosport 178:902
12 Josef Newgarden Team Penske 178:874
13 Oliver Askew Arrow McLaren SP 178:753
14 Tony Kanaan AJ Foyt Racing 178:426
15 Felix Rosenqvist Chip Ganassi Racing 178:248
16 Zach Veach Andretti Autosport 177:760
17 Marco Andretti Andretti Autosport 177:687
18 Simon Pagenaud Team Penske 176:981
19 Ryan Hunter-Reay Andretti Autosport 176:917
20 Ed Carpenter Ed Carpenter Racing 176:824
21 Charlie Kimball AJ Foyt Racing 176:222
22 Graham Rahal Rahal Letterman Lanigan 175:892
23 Santino Ferrucci Dale Coyne Racing 173.874

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