Iowa IndyCar: Pagenaud stays top in final practice

Simon Pagenaud led Team Penske-Chevrolet teammate Josef Newgarden in evening practice at Iowa Speedway as the teams tried race setups in conditions similar to those they’ll encounter in the first third of the race tomorrow evening.

Iowa IndyCar: Pagenaud stays top in final practice

Poleman Pagenaud's best time came on fresh tires at the start of his first stint – the fourth of the 84 laps he turned in total – and he sounded less happy with his car over in the second half of the session.

Nonetheless, he retained top spot with that 174.462mph lap although Newgarden ran him close with a 173.775.

The driver who made most progress compared with his qualifying effort was owner/driver Ed Carpenter who will roll off only 17th tomorrow evening for the Iowa 300, but was third-fastest this evening and seemed able to compete on the level with the Penskes over long runs.

Scott Dixon made a late surge to send his Chip Ganassi Racing car into fourth, fastest of the Honda runners, ahead of the highly impressive Carlin-Chevy of Conor Daly.

Late in the session Harding Steinbrenner Racing’s Colton Herta improved to sixth, top rookie and faster than any of the sister cars from the Andretti Autosport stable.

Marcus Ericsson had a couple of alarming moments in his #7 Arrow Schmidt Peterson Motorsports-Honda – one when he got loose following another car and slithered up into the gray, and the second moments later when he again flirted with the wall as his tires still weren’t clean from the first incident.

Nonetheless, the ex-F1 driver, who qualified 10th, continued to impress with seventh-fastest time, ahead of the third Penske of Will Power.

Ryan Hunter-Reay and Alexander Rossi completed the top 10 for Andretti Autosport ahead of Spencer Pigot in the second Ed Carpenter-Chevy.

The race begins at 6.10pm local (Central) time tomorrow evening.

Session results:

Cla # Driver Team Time Gap Mph
1 22 France Simon Pagenaud
Team Penske 18.4476 174.462
2 2 United States Josef Newgarden
Team Penske 18.5205 0.0729 173.775
3 20 United States Ed Carpenter
Ed Carpenter Racing 18.6427 0.1951 172.636
4 9 New Zealand Scott Dixon
Chip Ganassi Racing 18.7596 0.3120 171.560
5 59 United States Conor Daly
Carlin 18.8966 0.4490 170.316
6 88 United States Colton Herta
Harding Racing 19.0225 0.5749 169.189
7 7 Sweden Marcus Ericsson
Schmidt Peterson Motorsports 19.0338 0.5862 169.089
8 12 Australia Will Power
Team Penske 19.0937 0.6461 168.558
9 28 United States Ryan Hunter-Reay
Andretti Autosport 19.1086 0.6610 168.427
10 27 United States Alexander Rossi
Andretti Autosport 19.1200 0.6724 168.326
11 21 United States Spencer Pigot
Ed Carpenter Racing 19.1415 0.6939 168.137
12 5 Canada James Hinchcliffe
Schmidt Peterson Motorsports 19.1709 0.7233 167.879
13 26 United States Zach Veach
Andretti Autosport 19.2414 0.7938 167.264
14 15 United States Graham Rahal
Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing 19.2664 0.8188 167.047
15 18 France Sébastien Bourdais
Dale Coyne Racing 19.2826 0.8350 166.907
16 4 Brazil Matheus Leist
A.J. Foyt Enterprises 19.2839 0.8363 166.896
17 14 Brazil Tony Kanaan
A.J. Foyt Enterprises 19.2917 0.8441 166.828
18 30 Japan Takuma Sato
Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing 19.3419 0.8943 166.395
19 10 Sweden Felix Rosenqvist
Chip Ganassi Racing 19.4030 0.9554 165.871
20 98 United States Marco Andretti
Andretti Autosport 19.4559 1.0083 165.420
21 31 United States Sage Karam
Carlin 19.4620 1.0144 165.368
22 19 United States Santino Ferrucci
Dale Coyne Racing 19.6935 1.2459 163.424
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Series IndyCar
Event Iowa
Author David Malsher-Lopez
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