Toronto IndyCar: Pagenaud leads third practice as rookies shine

There were another couple of red flags for experienced drivers causing session-stopping errors in FP3 at the Honda Indy Toronto, but Team Penske-Chevrolet’s Simon Pagenaud was again unbeatable and three rookies excelled.

Toronto IndyCar: Pagenaud leads third practice as rookies shine

The 2016 NTT IndyCar Series champion and reigning Indy 500 winner lapped the 1.786-mile course in 59.365sec to beat his struggling teammates Josef Newgarden and Will Power by almost three-quarters of a second, while Felix Rosenqvist of Chip Ganassi Racing-Honda was second, a similar margin ahead of his teammate Scott Dixon, down in 15th.

Andretti Autosport-Honda’s Ryan Hunter-Reay had drawn to within 0.16sec of Simon Pagenaud’s top time when he thumped the tires and stalled at Turn 8, although he would remain third fastest.

With four minutes to go Graham Rahal stuffed his Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing-Honda into the Turn 1 tire wall, allowing drivers just one more timed lap before the checkered flag, but no one improved.

Thus Santino Ferrucci clocked P4 in the Dale Coyne Racing-Honda ahead of fellow rookie Colton Herta of Harding Steinbrenner Racing.

Marco Andretti continued his reasonably impressive weekend in sixth ahead of championship-contending teammate Alexander Rossi, while Sebastien Bourdais made it two Coyne cars in the top eight.

James Hinchcliffe was just two places ahead of his Arrow Schmidt Peterson Motorsports-Honda teammate Marcus Ericsson who was in much better form today than yesterday, the pair of them split by Spencer Pigot’s Ed Carpenter Racing-Chevy.

Sage Karam, making his return to a non-oval IndyCar race for the first time since 2015, was 2sec off the pace, 1.1sec behind Carlin-Chevy teammate Max Chilton.

Qualifying begins at 2.00pm local (Eastern) time.

Cla Driver Team Laps Time Gap Interval Mph
1 France Simon Pagenaud
Team Penske 19 59.3651 108.306
2 Sweden Felix Rosenqvist
Chip Ganassi Racing 27 59.4353 0.0702 0.0702 108.178
3 United States Ryan Hunter-Reay
Andretti Autosport 13 59.5277 0.1626 0.0924 108.010
4 United States Santino Ferrucci
Dale Coyne Racing 22 59.6636 0.2985 0.1359 107.764
5 United States Colton Herta
Harding Racing 21 59.6722 0.3071 0.0086 107.749
6 United States Marco Andretti
Andretti Autosport 22 59.8162 0.4511 0.1440 107.489
7 United States Alexander Rossi
Andretti Autosport 20 59.8232 0.4581 0.0070 107.477
8 France Sébastien Bourdais
Dale Coyne Racing 23 59.8847 0.5196 0.0615 107.366
9 Canada James Hinchcliffe
Schmidt Peterson Motorsports 18 59.8869 0.5218 0.0022 107.362
10 United States Spencer Pigot
Ed Carpenter Racing 22 59.9400 0.5749 0.0531 107.267
11 Sweden Marcus Ericsson
Schmidt Peterson Motorsports 19 59.9802 0.6151 0.0402 107.195
12 United States Graham Rahal
Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing 20 59.9843 0.6192 0.0041 107.188
13 United States Josef Newgarden
Team Penske 18 1'00.0944 0.7293 0.1101 106.992
14 Australia Will Power
Team Penske 21 1'00.0970 0.7319 0.0026 106.987
15 New Zealand Scott Dixon
Chip Ganassi Racing 19 1'00.1200 0.7549 0.0230 106.946
16 United Kingdom Max Chilton
Carlin 18 1'00.2706 0.9055 0.1506 106.679
17 United Arab Emirates Ed Jones
Ed Carpenter Racing 16 1'00.3074 0.9423 0.0368 106.614
18 Japan Takuma Sato
Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing 19 1'00.4657 1.1006 0.1583 106.335
19 Brazil Tony Kanaan
A.J. Foyt Enterprises 22 1'00.5096 1.1445 0.0439 106.258
20 Brazil Matheus Leist
A.J. Foyt Enterprises 18 1'00.9063 1.5412 0.3967 105.565
21 United States Zach Veach
Andretti Autosport 19 1'01.0067 1.6416 0.1004 105.392
22 United States Sage Karam
Carlin 23 1'01.3920 2.0269 0.3853 104.730
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