Thursday at Indy - Day three of practice for the Indy 500 is in the books…
…and after 7 hours of running in beautiful conditions, the fastest guy on the track today was Graham Rahal for Rahal Letterman Lannigan, followed by Tony Kanaan for AJ Foyt Enterprises, while 3rd fastest was Marco Andretti for Andretti Herta. This was officially the P-4 session, as Tuesday had both P-1 and P-2. Since we are deep into the sessions we will present the combined sessions for the week, thus far.
Here is the order of speed for all sessions COMBINED, with times for the TOP FIVE: [R] denotes rookie and the session that the position was taken in is listed in ( )
1 - Marco Andretti, Andretti Herta - time of 00:39.6383s for a speed of 227.053mph (3)
2 - Scott Dixon, Chip Ganassi Racing - time of 00:39.7651s for a speed of 226.329mph (3)
3 - Takuma Sato, Rahal Letterman Lanigan - time of 00:39.8039s for a speed of 226.108mph (3)
4 - Robert Wickens [R], Schmidt Peterson Motorsports - time of 00:39.8078s for a speed of 226.086mph (3)
5 - Graham Rahal, Rahal Letterman Lanigan - time of 00:39.8148s for a speed of 226.047mph (4)
6 - Tony Kanaan, A.J. Foyt Enterprises (4)
7 - Charlie Kimball, Carlin (3)
8 - Simon Pagenaud, Team Penske (1)
9 - Gabby Chaves, Harding Racing (3)
10 - Ed Carpenter, Ed Carpenter Racing (3)
11 - Oriol Servia, Scuderia Corsa with RLL (3)
12 - Sage Karam, Dreyer & Reinbold Racing (4)
13 - Josef Newgarden, Team Penske (3)
14 - Zachary Claman DeMelo [R], Dale Coyne Racing (4)
15 - Helio Castroneves, Team Penske (2)
16 - Danica Patrick, Ed Carpenter Racing (3)
17 - Carlos Munoz, Andretti Autosport (3)
18 - Spencer Pigot, Ed Carpenter Racing (3)
19 - Jay Howard, SPM / AFS (3)
20 - Matheus Leist [R], A.J. Foyt Enterprises
21 - Max Chilton, Carlin (3)
22 - Alexander Rossi, Andretti Autosport (3)
23 - JR Hildebrand, Dreyer & Reinbold Racing (3)
24 - Will Power, Team Penske (3)
25 - Ryan Hunter-Reay, Andretti Autosport (3)
26 - Jack Harvey [R], Meyer Shank Racing with SPM (3)
27 - Sebastien Bourdais, Dale Coyne Racing w/ Vasser/Sullivan (4)
28 - Pippa Mann, Dale Coyne Racing (3)
29 - Zach Veach [R], Andretti Autosport (3)
30 - Ed Jones, Chip Ganassi Racing (3)
31 - James Davison, Foyt with Byrd / Hollinger / Belardi (2)
32 - Kyle Kaiser [R], Juncos Racing (3)
33 - James Hinchcliffe, Schmidt Peterson Motorsports (3)
34 - Conor Daly, Dale Coyne Racing dba Thom Burns Racing (3)
35 - Stefan Wilson, Andretti Autosport (2)
While Marco Andretti has been consistently fast, as has Tony Kanaan, it’s not the case that the whole team for each guy is fast. But with Rahal Letterman Lanigan, there are two drivers in the TOP FIVE and their Indy add, Oriol Servia, is P12 thus far for the week. As a team they have to be happy.
Fastest guy today without a tow was Will Power for Team Penske, posting a speed of 223.971 mph. But Power is mired in the bottom half for the week, as are a few other big names on big teams.
While RLL is happy, Dale Coyne Racing is perplexed. The speed they have had lately seems to be eluding them. Even their big gun, Sebastien Bourdais, is bottom half and not improving as he should. Their best driver is the guy who almost wasn’t here - Zachary Claman DeMelo in P14, subbing for injured Pietro Fittipaldi.
Two other wonder boys are Charlie Kimball and Gabby Chaves. Both have struggled for most of this season but they have consistently been TOP TEN this week. However, that isn’t a surprise if you know their history at Indy. This is where both guys shine.
The first wall-slapper occurred today, as JR Hildebrand in the # 66 Chevy for Dreyer and Reinbold Racing drifted into the wall in Turn 3, and scraped along it to Turn 4. Not much damage and JR is fine, but doesn’t know why the car did what it did, which is unsettling.
Lookin’ good, left to right, Charlie Kimball, Gabby Chaves and Zachary Claman DeMelo
Friday is the last day of practice and the turbo boost level will be upped to qualifying level, which is higher than race level. Everyone will be trying out their qualifying set-ups for Saturday - the first day of qualifying.