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Testing report

Indy 500 testing: Ericsson leads Castroneves in first session

Marcus Ericsson led the way in the opening test session for this year’s 107th running of the Indianapolis 500, beating Helio Castroneves and Alex Palou.

Marcus Ericsson, Chip Ganassi Racing Honda

Marcus Ericsson, Chip Ganassi Racing Honda

Brett Farmer / Motorsport Images

After half an hour of the first two-hour session for the Indy 500 veterans, Chip Ganassi Racing’s Ericsson sat at the top of the speed charts.

Having lapped the 2.5-mile course in 40.1194s, 224.330mph, last year's Indy 500 winner was over one mile per hour clear of Colton Herta of Andretti Autosport and Dale Coyne Racing’s David Malukas

Another former winner, Pagenaud was fourth for Meyer Shank Racing and was followed by the quickest of the Penske drivers, Josef Newgarden, with 2008 winner Scott Dixon and 2018 winner Will Power

The first caution of the session flew 45 minutes in for a track inspection.

When action resumed, two of the Ed Carpenter Racing cars – that of team owner Carpenter and Conor Daly got nice tows from Takuma Sato to jump into second and fourth respectively, with Pagenaud slotting between the two. 

A second yellow flew with 45 minutes to go, again for a track inspection, and action resumed 15 minutes later. 

Indy 500 winners, Marcus Ericsson, Ryan Hunter-Reay, Will Power, Simon Pagenaud, Alexander Rossi, Scott Dixon, Takuma Sato, Helio Castroneves, Tony Kanaan

Indy 500 winners, Marcus Ericsson, Ryan Hunter-Reay, Will Power, Simon Pagenaud, Alexander Rossi, Scott Dixon, Takuma Sato, Helio Castroneves, Tony Kanaan

Photo by: Michael L. Levitt

With less than 10 minutes left on the clock, Palou was able to jump to second behind team-mate Ericsson, but Helio Castroneves denied Chip Ganassi a 1-2 finish by setting a late 224.280mph lap in his Meyer Shank Racing-Honda.

The best Chevrolet-powered car was of Pesnke's Scott McLaughlin, who was another late improver as he jumped to fourth ahead of Carpenter.

Last-minute laps from the likes of Palou, Castroneves and McLaughlin demoted Pagenaud to sixth ahead of Dixon, who set his quickest time just after the last yellow flag period.

Herta dropped to ninth at the finish, while the top 10 was rounded off by Daly.

Penske pair Josef Newgarden and Will Power finished nearly two miles off Ericsson's best effort in 11th and 12th respectively, just ahead of two of the three full-season Arrow McLaren entries driven by Felix Rosenqvist and Pato O'Ward.

Pos Driver Team Engine Time Gap Speed
1 Marcus Ericsson Chip Ganassi Racing Honda 40.1194   224.330mph
2 Helio Castroneves Meyer Shank Racing Honda 40.1284 0.0090 224.280mph
3 Alex Palou Chip Ganassi Racing Honda 40.1628 0.0434 224.088mph
4 Scott McLaughlin Team Penske Chevrolet 40.1848 0.0654 223.965mph
5 Ed Carpenter Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet 40.2208 0.1014 223.765mph
6 Simon Pagenaud Meyer Shank Racing Honda 40.2612 0.1418 223.540mph
7 Scott Dixon Chip Ganassi Racing Honda 40.2746 0.1552 223.466mph
8 Colton Herta Andretti Autosport Honda 40.2849 0.1655 223.409mph
9 David Malukas Dale Coyne Racing Honda 40.2883 0.1689 223.390mph
10 Conor Daly Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet 40.3381 0.2187 223.114mph
11 Josef Newgarden Team Penske Chevrolet 40.3815 0.2621 222.874mph
12 Will Power Team Penske Chervrolet 40.4326 0.3132 222.593mph
13 Felix Rosenqvist Arrow McLaren Chevrolet 40.4468 0.3274 222.515mph
14 Pato O‘Ward Arrow McLaren Chevrolet 40.4719 0.3525 222.377mph
15 Rinus VeeKay Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet 40.5175 0.3981 222.126mph
16 Takuma Sato Chip Ganassi Racing Honda 40.5384 0.4190 222.012mph
17 Devlin DeFrancesco Andretti Honda 40.7387 0.6193 220.920mph
18 Callum Ilott Juncos Hollinger Racing Chevrolet 40.7403 0.6209 220.911mph
19 Santino Ferrucci AJ Foyt Chevrolet 40.8032 0.6838 220.571mph
20 Christian Lundgaard Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing Honda 40.8676 0.7482 220.223mph
21 Jack Harvey Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing Honda 40.8755 0.7561 220.181mph
22 Graham Rahal Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing Honda 40.9705 0.8511 219.670mph
23 Alexander Rossi Arrow McLaren Chevrolet 40.9992 0.8798 219.516mph
24 Kyle Kirkwood Andretti Autosport Honda 41.1119 0.8897 219.463mph
25 Romain Grosjean Andretti Autosport Honda 41.0287 0.9093 219.359mph

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