Penske’s Josef Newgarden fastest on second Indianapolis 500 practice day
Team Penske’s Josef Newgarden paced the second day of practice for the 103rd running of the Indianapolis 500, turning a 228.856-mph lap at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Scott Dixon of Chip Ganassi Racing was second at 228.835 mph.
Dixon’s teammate, Felix Rosenqvist, crashed with just less than an hour in the session but was unhurt after a pair of heavy impacts for his No. 10 Dallara-Honda.
Fernando Alonso also was OK after a crash early Wednesday afternoon.
Newgarden said his team had a “pretty clean” day without working much on preparing for qualifying Saturday.
“It was an OK day for us at least,” he said. “You saw it’s not easy. A couple wrecks today. I think that shows you that it’s not super straightforward to try and get around here even on a practice day.
“I think we need to be a bit better in traffic. Still trying to figure out exactly what we need on the race car. That was kind of our focus today. We didn’t really do much qualifying sims or anything like that.
“So yeah, we’re trucking forward. I think the Shell car feels OK. It’s not a bad start. I’m trying to stay careful with it. I always try and respect this place at the beginning. I never try and push until it’s time. Just you’ve always got to watch your back around here. She’s a tough place at a lot of moments.”
Spencer Pigot, Santino Ferrucci and Helio Castroneves rounded out the top five speeds.
Alexander Rossi (224.648 mph) had the fastest speed without a tow during the session.
“It’s pretty irrelevant,” Rossi said. “It’s good, right? I mean, I think there’s inherent pace in the car, which is always a question mark coming here.
“We were joking earlier kind of among the drivers, the drivers are a much smaller equation at a place like this in terms of the overall performance at least in single lap pace. It’s really down to the car and the setup that you come up with. It’s a positive thing, but still, super irrelevant at this point.”