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July 15, 2024
IndyCar Barber: McLaughlin tops incident-packed first practice


Inevitably, after a warm-up lap at the start of the session, the veterans parked and let the rookies use their extra set of primary tyres to clean the track and add grip to the surface already christened with Firestone rubber thanks to the Indy NXT cars on track earlier in the afternoon.

Despite a lurid moment at Turn 9 in his #11 Chip Ganassi, Marcus Armstrong was the first to lap the course at an average of over 122mph on his sixth lap, producing a 1m07.7542s around the 17-turn 2.3-mile course.

Christian Lundgaard was the first non-rookie to lay down a fast lap, and within three flyers he was on top with a 1m07.4060s, a couple of tenths ahead of Andretti Autosport’s Romain Grosjean.

Then Helio Castroneves took too big a bite out of the extended curbing at Turn 8, went airborne and his Meyer Shank Racing car ended up in the gravel trap on the outside of Turn 9, but without reaching the tyre wall.

Armstrong’s Ganassi team-mates were next to show their mettle, Alex Palou – 2021 winner here – going top, with Indy 500 winner Marcus Ericsson clocking third.

Then out came the second red, as Grosjean’s right-side exhausts started smoking heavily and he was told to stop on track.

When the action resumed, McLaughlin, who topped the test at Barber in mid-March, jumped his Team Penske up to third on his sixth lap, ahead of Alexander Rossi’s Arrow McLaren.

Meanwhile, Palou had delivered a 123mph lap to set a 1m07.2709s, but he was soon eclipsed by team-mate Scott Dixon who has scored nine podiums in 12 starts at Barber but is still seeking his first win here, while Ericsson made it a Ganassi 1-2-3.

Patricio O’Ward, Arrow McLaren

Photo by: IndyCar Series

David Malukas of Dale Coyne Racing was the first driver to put on a set of the alternate Firestone tyres and moved into fifth, but Simon Pagenaud also using the softer rubber was able to shade him to grab fourth and then went top with a 1m07.1071s.

Pato O’Ward had a lurid moment over the blind crest approaching Turn 16, oversteering off the track and mowing down two advertising boards, but keeping the car undamaged. Two-time Barber winner Will Power wasn’t so lucky, running slightly wide at Turn 1 on his first attempt on alternates, and then rolling across the gravel trap at Turn 2, knocking the front wing into the tyre wall and requiring rescuing.

In the final five minutes, Lundgaard laid down a 1m07.0200s on alternates, but Ericsson cracked the 1m07s barrier with a 1m06.9994s. He was rapidly deposed by McLaughlin’s 124mph effort, a 1m06.6610s, with Colton Herta second for Andretti Autosport.

Power was the last driver to squeeze in a lap and despite slightly worse-for-wear tyres, he wound up third, just ahead of old foe Dixon, fastest of the Ganassi drivers.

Second practice will begin at 11.00am on Saturday, with qualifying starting at 2.00pm (both local time).

IndyCar Barber – FP1 results

P

Name

FTime

Diff

FL

Laps

FSpeed

Engine

Tire

Team

1

Scott McLaughlin

1:06.6610

1:06.6610

16

16

124.211

Chevy

A

Team Penske

2

Colton Herta

1:06.8193

0.1583

17

17

123.916

Honda

A

Andretti Autosport w/Curb-Agajanian

3

Will Power

1:06.8985

0.2375

21

21

123.770

Chevy

A

Team Penske

4

Scott Dixon

1:06.9345

0.2735

17

17

123.703

Honda

A

Chip Ganassi Racing

5

Marcus Ericsson

1:06.9994

0.3384

17

19

123.583

Honda

A

Chip Ganassi Racing

6

Christian Lundgaard

1:07.0200

0.3590

20

22

123.545

Honda

A

Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing

7

Josef Newgarden

1:07.0579

0.3969

15

17

123.475

Chevy

A

Team Penske

8

Pato O’Ward

1:07.0771

0.4161

15

15

123.440

Chevy

A

Arrow McLaren

9

Simon Pagenaud

1:07.1071

0.4461

14

19

123.385

Honda

A

Meyer Shank Racing

10

Alex Palou

1:07.1678

0.5068

21

22

123.273

Honda

A

Chip Ganassi Racing

11

Alexander Rossi

1:07.2483

0.5873

18

21

123.126

Chevy

A

Arrow McLaren

12

Graham Rahal

1:07.3181

0.6571

18

19

122.998

Honda

A

Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing

13

Rinus VeeKay

1:07.3990

0.7380

16

18

122.850

Chevy

A

Ed Carpenter Racing

14

Callum Ilott

1:07.4038

0.7428

19

21

122.842

Chevy

A

Juncos Hollinger Racing

15

David Malukas

1:07.4101

0.7491

14

19

122.830

Honda

A

Dale Coyne Racing with HMD

16

Devlin DeFrancesco

1:07.4765

0.8155

16

17

122.709

Honda

A

Andretti Steinbrenner Autosport

17

Marcus Armstrong

1:07.4770

0.8160

30

30

122.708

Honda

A

Chip Ganassi Racing

18

Conor Daly

1:07.5920

0.9310

19

20

122.500

Chevy

A

Ed Carpenter Racing

19

Romain Grosjean

1:07.6038

0.9428

4

9

122.478

Honda

P

Andretti Autosport

20

Jack Harvey

1:07.7399

1.0789

17

18

122.232

Honda

A

Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing

21

Felix Rosenqvist

1:07.7901

1.1291

12

23

122.142

Chevy

A

Arrow McLaren

22

Kyle Kirkwood

1:07.8077

1.1467

6

20

122.110

Honda

A

Andretti Autosport

23

Helio Castroneves

1:07.9041

1.2431

19

19

121.937

Honda

A

Meyer Shank Racing

24

Agustin Canapino

1:07.9130

1.2520

24

26

121.921

Chevy

A

Juncos Holling Racing

25

Sting Ray Robb

1:07.9557

1.2947

6

30

121.844

Honda

P

Dale Coyne Racing w/RWR

26

Santino Ferrucci

1:08.0966

1.4356

16

16

121.592

Chevy

A

AJ Foyt Enterprises

27

Benjamin Pedersen

1:08.3643

1.7033

25

27

121.116

Chevy

A

AJ Foyt Enterprises

 



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