IndyCar St Petersburg: Ryan Hunter-Reay fastest in second practice

Andretti's Ryan Hunter-Reay topped the times in the second practice session ahead of the 2018 IndyCar season-opener at St Petersburg

IndyCar St Petersburg: Ryan Hunter-Reay fastest in second practice

Hunter-Reay took the top spot midway through the running and engaged in place swapping with Penske's Will Power for the benchmark time.

But with just over 15 minutes to go, Hunter-Reay took command of the session with a time of 1m00.8295s.

Schmidt Peterson Motorsports driver James Hinchcliffe nipped ahead of Power for second place a few minutes with the Australian running on the slower black-compound tyres.

Despite teams using the more representative session to do qualifying simulations, there was little movement in the top 10 in the remaining final minutes.

Chip Ganassi Racing's Scott Dixon was one of the few to do so, going fourth in the final minute.

Dixon was also one of several drivers to be caught out at the quick left-right of Turns 3 and 4, spinning onto the escape road.

The new 2018 universal aerokit has increased braking zones and removed a high amount of downforce, meaning that the usually difficult Turn 1 at the end of the runway was usurped by the third and fourth corners as the trickiest part of the lap.

Reigning IndyCar champion Josef Newgarden improved in the second session to go fifth ahead of Andretti's Alexander Rossi.

Robert Wickens continued a so far impressive IndyCar debut weekend by going seventh for SPM.

Dale Coyne Racing's Sebastien Bourdais beat Tony Kanaan and AJ Foyt Racing to eighth.

New Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing recruit Takuma Sato improved in the second session to be 10th ahead of Marco Andretti and first practice pacesetter Matheus Leist.

Penske's Simon Pagenaud made a mistake late in the session at the exit of Turn 4, clipping the wall and nursing his car back to the pits with a time good enough for 13th.

Jordan King also made a similar error on his way to 15th, causing one of two red flags, and finished one place behind Ed Carpenter Racing team-mate Spencer Pigot.

The other red flag was caused by Rene Binder on his debut weekend for Juncos Racing, hitting the wall on the exit of Turn 4 after a high-speed spin that somehow left him without major damage to his car.

FP2 times

Pos Driver Team Car Gap Laps
1 Ryan Hunter-Reay Andretti Autosport Dallara/Honda 1m00.8295s 12
2 James Hinchcliffe Schmidt Peterson Motorsports Dallara/Honda 0.0429s 20
3 Will Power Team Penske Dallara/Chevrolet 0.1638s 16
4 Scott Dixon Chip Ganassi Racing Dallara/Honda 0.2709s 20
5 Josef Newgarden Team Penske Dallara/Chevrolet 0.2717s 19
6 Alexander Rossi Andretti Autosport Dallara/Honda 0.3247s 17
7 Robert Wickens Schmidt Peterson Motorsports Dallara/Honda 0.3895s 18
8 Sebastien Bourdais Dale Coyne Racing Dallara/Honda 0.4446s 13
9 Tony Kanaan AJ Foyt Enterprises Dallara/Chevrolet 0.4890s 16
10 Takuma Sato Rahal Letterman Lanigan Dallara/Honda 0.5196s 18
11 Marco Andretti Andretti Herta Dallara/Honda 0.5485s 12
12 Matheus Leist AJ Foyt Enterprises Dallara/Chevrolet 0.6090s 20
13 Simon Pagenaud Team Penske Dallara/Chevrolet 0.6214s 10
14 Spencer Pigot Ed Carpenter Racing Dallara/Chevrolet 0.7210s 16
15 Jordan King Ed Carpenter Racing Dallara/Chevrolet 0.7284s 16
16 Ed Jones Chip Ganassi Racing Dallara/Honda 0.7524s 20
17 Gabby Chaves Harding Racing Dallara/Chevrolet 0.7882s 22
18 Zach Veach Andretti Autosport Dallara/Honda 1.0128s 16
19 Charlie Kimball Carlin Dallara/Chevrolet 1.0871s 19
20 Graham Rahal Rahal Letterman Lanigan Dallara/Honda 1.1698s 17
21 Zachary Claman Dale Coyne Racing Dallara/Honda 1.2073s 19
22 Max Chilton Carlin Dallara/Chevrolet 1.2341s 19
23 Jack Harvey Michael Shank Racing Dallara/Honda 1.3345s 18
24 Rene Binder Juncos Racing Dallara/Chevrolet 1.4959s 19


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Series IndyCar
Drivers Ryan Hunter-Reay
Author Tom Errington
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