Palou Tops Post-Qualifying Indianapolis 500 Practice Session

Alex Palou caps off an exciting day at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway with the top speed in the practice session after he qualified sixth for the Indianapolis 500. Sitting atop yet another session this May, Chip Ganassi Racing prove once again that they are the team to beat with all four cars inside the top five in the session. As teams prepare for “The Great American Race”, this session was filled with exciting pack racing and practice for green flag pit stops.

Thirty minutes into the session Team Penske‘s struggles continued as a caution was put out for Simon Pagenaud blew an engine on the frontstretch. He will not lose his qualifying spot for changing an engine, but he did lose an hour and a half of valuable practice time. Pagenaud said that he still believes that he “has a hot rod” despite this unfortunate issue.

Marcus Ericsson went second fastest on the day, while Tony Kanaan and Scott Dixon finished fourth and fifth quickest respectively. Slowly but surely since the beginning of the week, Ganassi cars have consistently worked their way to the top of the time sheets and put down fast laps when it counted most in qualifying. This team has so much pace, and it would not be surprising to see one of their faces on the Borg Warner trophy next.

The man that split all the CGR machines was Conor Daly of Ed Carpenter Racing, who finished third fastest and finishes in the top five yet again in a practice session. With his teammates Rinus Veekay and Ed Carpenter inside the fast nine in qualifying, ECR might be another team to watch for an upset win come next Sunday.

The defending Indianapolis 500 winner Takuma Sato finished the session in sixth with his Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing teammate Graham Rahal right behind him in seventh place. After both finished on the podium last year, they have their work cut out for them this year as they start in the middle of the pack in fifteenth and eighteenth respectively.

Stefan Wilson of Andretti Autosport was the best of the Indy 500-only entrants in this session, finishing eighth fastest. He was joined by fellow Indy-only Andretti driver Marco Andretti, who finished the session in tenth place.

Splitting the Andretti cars much like Daly did Ganassi was Felix Rosenqvist of Arrow McLaren SP, who finished the session ninth fastest. His teammates Juan Pablo Montoya and Patricio O’Ward finished the session sixteenth and twenty-fourth respectively.

Teams will now get a well earned break, and are scheduled to return to the track next Friday, 28 May, for the final practice session of the month. “Carb Day”, as it’s known, will take place at 1100 EST / 1600 BST.

2021 Indianapolis 500 Practice 8 Official Results

RANK CAR NO. DRIVER NAT TEAM SPEED (MPH)
1 10 Alex Palou ESP Chip Ganassi Racing 225.649
2 8 Marcus Ericsson SWE Chip Ganassi Racing 225.632
3 47 Conor Daly USA Ed Carpenter Racing 225.453
4 48 Tony Kanaan BRA Chip Ganassi Racing 225.431
5 9 Scott Dixon NZL Chip Ganassi Racing 224.802
6 30 Takuma Sato JPN Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing 224.430
7 15 Graham Rahal USA Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing 224.376
8 25 Stefan Wilson GBR Andretti Autosport 224.209
9 7 Felix Rosenqvist SWE Arrow McLaren SP 224.085
10 98 Marco Andretti USA Andretti Herta-Haupert w/ Marco & Curb-Agajanian 223.843
11 12 Will Power AUS Team Penske 223.565
12 1 JR Hildebrand USA A.J. Foyt Enterprises 223.531
13 27 Alexander Rossi USA Andretti Autosport 223.455
14 14 Sebastien Bourdais FRA A.J. Foyt Enterprises 223.446
15 3 Scott McLaughlin (R) NZL Team Penske 223.212
16 86 Juan Pablo Montoya COL Arrow McLaren SP 223.099
17 45 Santino Ferrucci USA Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing 223.055
18 24 Sage Karam USA Dreyer & Reinbold Racing 222.953
19 29 James Hinchcliffe CAN Andretti Steinbrenner Autosport 222.754
20 18 Ed Jones UAE Dale Coyne Racing w/ Vasser-Sullivan 222.670
21 4 Dalton Kellett CAN A.J. Foyt Enterprises 222.569
22 60 Jack Harvey GBR Meyer Shank Racing 222.487
23 21 Rinus VeeKay NED Ed Carpenter Racing 222.444
24 5 Pato O’Ward MEX Arrow McLaren SP 222.336
25 20 Ed Carpenter USA Ed Carpenter Racing 222.277
26 2 Josef Newgarden USA Team Penske 222.138
27 59 Max Chilton GBR Carlin 221.970
28 22 Simon Pagenaud FRA Team Penske 221.683
29 26 Colton Herta USA Andretti Autosport 221.410
30 6 Helio Castroneves BRA Meyer Shank Racing 221.348
31 51 Pietro Fittipaldi BRA Dale Coyne Racing w/ Rick Ware Racing 221.250
32 28 Ryan Hunter-Reay USA Andretti Autosport 221.201
33 16 Simona De Silvestro SUI Paretta Autosport 220.604
(R) = Rookie

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