Hinchcliffe tops opening day of Indy 500 practice, Alonso fifth on return

James Hinchcliffe led an Andretti Autosport 1-2-4 on the opening day of practice for the 104th Indianapolis 500 as Fernando Alonso clocked the fifth fastest time

Hinchcliffe tops opening day of Indy 500 practice, Alonso fifth on return

Making only his third IndyCar Series outing of the year, 2016 pole-winner Hinchcliffe turned a 224.526mph average on his 35th of 80 laps in the afternoon session to edge team-mate Marco Andretti by 0.18mph.

Similarly impressive was his no-tow speed of 220.732mph, a mere 0.003mph slower than team-mate and 2014 Indy winner Ryan Hunter-Reay who ended the day fourth fastest overall.

The non-Andretti interloper in the top four was series points leader Scott Dixon's Chip Ganassi Racing machine, the 2008 Indy 500 winner clocking a best effort of 224.046mph.

One year after failing to qualify for the 500, two-time Formula 1 world champion Alonso's resumption of his assault on the Triple Crown began well with the fifth fastest time - and top Chevrolet runner - although the Spaniard's Arrow McLaren SP car only completed 29 laps.

Alonso placed just ahead of 2019 IndyCar Series champion Josef Newgarden in the fastest of the four Team Penske entries.

Although Newgarden's Indy-winning team-mates Helio Castroneves, Simon Pagenaud and Will Power were down in 10th, 12th and 23rd respectively, Power, Castroneves and Newgarden had topped the average speeds over 30 laps, equivalent to one full stint.

Top rookie honours went to Alex Palou of Dale Coyne Racing with Team Goh in eighth place, one place ahead of Iowa polesitter Conor Daly, back with traditional pole-contending outfit Ed Carpenter Racing after his strong showing with the Carlin team last time out.

PLUS: How a single-car team is turning the tide in IndyCar

One-time Indy 500 winner Tony Kanaan took a run in Foyt team-mate Dalton Kellett's car to reassure the Canadian rookie that all was well with his machine, and Kellett duly completed his Rookie Orientation Practice, which he hadn't quite done in the early afternoon session.

The third Foyt entry driven by Charlie Kimball had a slightly alarming brush with the Turn 2 wall - curiously, on corner entry - but that was the closest anyone came to causing a yellow. The other caution periods were for track inspections.

After the end of practice, the DragonSpeed car of Ben Hanley, who hadn't turned a lap throughout the day, was allowed out alone on track for a shakedown and to run his Refresher course.

Weather allowing, action resumes tomorrow morning at 11am local (Eastern) time with six-and-a-half hours available to all 33 runners.

Results

Pos Driver Team Speed Laps
1 James Hinchcliffe Andretti Autosport 224.526 80
2 Marco Andretti Andretti Autosport 224.345 96
3 Scott Dixon Chip Ganassi Racing 224.047 61
4 Ryan Hunter-Reay Andretti Autosport 223.341 81
5 Fernando Alonso Arrow McLaren SP 223.238 29
6 Josef Newgarden Team Penske 223.188 82
7 Jack Harvey Meyer Shank Racing 223.178 107
8 Alex Palou Dale Coyne Racing 223.128 60
9 Conor Daly Ed Carpenter Racing 223.020 80
10 Helio Castroneves Team Penske 222.929 62
11 Tony Kanaan A.J. Foyt Enterprises 222.873 58
12 Simon Pagenaud Team Penske 222.849 112
13 Takuma Sato Rahal Letterman Lanigan 222.551 84
14 Felix Rosenqvist Chip Ganassi Racing 222.541 89
15 Charlie Kimball A.J. Foyt Enterprises 222.438 102
16 Rinus Van Kalmthout Ed Carpenter Racing 222.061 76
17 Sage Karam Dreyer & Reinbold Racing 222.031 46
18 Alexander Rossi Andretti Autosport 221.952 77
19 Santino Ferrucci Dale Coyne Racing with Vasser Sullivan 221.905 87
20 Ed Carpenter Ed Carpenter Racing 221.813 102
21 James Davison Dale Coyne Racing 221.709 36
22 Colton Herta Andretti Harding 221.699 91
23 Will Power Team Penske 221.634 124
24 Marcus Ericsson Chip Ganassi Racing 221.588 129
25 Graham Rahal Rahal Letterman Lanigan 221.498 111
26 Spencer Pigot Citrone Buhl Autosport with RLL 221.492 81
27 Zach Veach Andretti Autosport 221.359 98
28 Patricio O'Ward Arrow McLaren SP 221.341 55
29 Max Chilton Carlin 221.147 36
30 Dalton Kellett A.J. Foyt Enterprises 220.825 26
31 Oliver Askew Arrow McLaren SP 220.130 51
32 J.R. Hildebrand Dreyer & Reinbold Racing 219.859 29
33 Tony Kanaan A.J. Foyt Enterprises 218.306 6
34 Ben Hanley DragonSpeed 0.000 0


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Series IndyCar
Drivers Fernando Alonso , James Hinchcliffe
Author David Malsher
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