Lundgaard quickest, McLaughlin fourth in Nashville IndyCar practice

Christian Lundgaard

Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing’s Christian Lundgaard has set the fastest lap in IndyCar Practice 1 at Nashville after three red flag periods.

In the first session to feature IndyCar’s new, literally green alternate compound tyres, rookie Lundgaard’s 1:15.9659s in the #30 Honda was at least 0.2391s faster than anyone else went.

Felix Rosenqvist (McLaren SP) was next-best, from David Malukas (Dale Coyne Racing w/ HMD Motorsports) and Scott McLaughlin (Team Penske), with series leader Will Power (Penske) seventh.

As usual, the field spent the opening period of the session slowly getting up to speed on primary tyres.

Josef Newgarden (Penske) was fastest on a 1:17.3855s when a red flag was called in the 24th minute as a result of Dalton Kellett (AJ Foyt Racing) stopping in a run-off area.

A second red flag came just four minutes after the restart from the first thanks to an off for Rinus VeeKay (Ed Carpenter Racing), by which time McLaughlin had taken up second on a 1:17.9071s.

After just over 40 minutes, Pato O’Ward (McLaren SP) clocked a 1:17.3180s, only for Newgarden to reclaim the ascendancy moments later with a 1:17.2729s, then improve to a 1:17.2591s after two laps more.

McLaughlin moved the benchmark to a 1:16.8441s in the 47th minute, apparently on black tyres, before yet another red flag in the 53rd minute after Colton Herta (Andretti Autosport w/ Curb-Agajanian) ran long at Turn 1 and stalled.

The next restart came in the 55th minute and there was soon a small piece of history when Alex Palou (Chip Ganassi Racing) went second with a 1:16.8505s set on the greens.

Rosenqvist then clocked a new fastest lap of 1:16.2050s on greens, which stood as the benchmark until Lundgaard’s 1:15.9659s in the 67th minute.

Malukas finished third on a 1:16.2366s and McLaughlin fourth on a 1:16.5755s on greens, with Newgarden rounding out the top five on a 1:16.6957s.

Last-start winner Alexander Rossi (Andretti Autosport) took sixth on a 1:16.7041s, from Power on a 1:16.8330s, with the top 10 rounded out by Herta, Palou, and Romain Grosjean (Andretti).

Marcus Ericsson (Ganassi) was 1.0104s off the pace in 11th, Helio Castroneves (Meyer Shank Racing) was 23rd after suffering a misfire in his Honda engine, and Simona De Silvestro (Paretta Autosport) ended up 25th in the 26-car field on her return to the driver’s seat.

In further bad news for Castroneves, he will have to serve a grid penalty this weekend.

Practice 2 starts on Sunday morning at 02:15 AEST, ahead of Qualifying at 06:30 AEST, with both of those sessions live and ad-free on Stan Sport.

Results: Practice 1

Pos Num Driver C/E/T Fastest lap Split 1st/prev Lap
1 30 Christian Lundgaard D/H/F 1:15.9659   25/29
2 7 Felix Rosenqvist D/C/F 1:16.2050 0.2391/0.2391 15/22
3 18 David Malukas D/H/F 1:16.2366 0.2707/0.0316 22/25
4 3 Scott McLaughlin D/C/F 1:16.5755 0.6096/0.3389 20/23
5 2 Josef Newgarden D/C/F 1:16.6957 0.7298/0.1202 24/27
6 27 Alexander Rossi D/H/F 1:16.7041 0.7382/0.0084 12/16
7 12 Will Power D/C/F 1:16.8330 0.8671/0.1289 22/26
8 26 Colton Herta D/H/F 1:16.8435 0.8776/0.0105 17/20
9 10 Alex Palou D/H/F 1:16.8505 0.8846/0.0070 17/24
10 28 Romain Grosjean D/H/F 1:16.9479 0.9820/0.0974 25/28
11 8 Marcus Ericsson D/H/F 1:16.9763 1.0104/0.0284 20/25
12 60 Simon Pagenaud D/H/F 1:17.0123 1.0464/0.0360 21/23
13 77 Callum Ilott D/C/F 1:17.1922 1.2263/0.1799 28/31
14 5 Pato O’Ward D/C/F 1:17.3180 1.3521/0.1258 10/25
15 51 Takuma Sato D/H/F 1:17.4097 1.4438/0.0917 23/26
16 9 Scott Dixon D/H/F 1:17.4430 1.4771/0.0333 12/21
17 14 Kyle Kirkwood D/C/F 1:17.5373 1.5714/0.0943 20/21
18 29 Devlin DeFrancesco D/H/F 1:17.5815 1.6156/0.0442 25/29
19 45 Jack Harvey D/H/F 1:17.6736 1.7077/0.0921 20/23
20 15 Graham Rahal D/H/F 1:17.7000 1.7341/0.0264 12/22
21 20 Conor Daly D/C/F 1:17.7633 1.7974/0.0633 24/27
22 21 Rinus VeeKay D/C/F 1:17.8434 1.8775/0.0801 22/28
23 06 Helio Castroneves D/H/F 1:18.1575 2.1916/0.3141 19/21
24 48 Jimmie Johnson D/H/F 1:18.7645 2.7986/0.6070 22/25
25 16 Simona De Silvestro D/C/F 1:18.9245 2.9586/0.1600 24/28
26 4 Dalton Kellett D/C/F 1:19.3271 3.3612/0.4026 22/24

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