While the rookies of IndyCar were up to the challenge in Friday afternoon’s practice for the Grand Prix of Portland, it was still a veteran taking center stage as Will Power was fastest in the 25-driver session.
Power, with a lap time of 57.4053s, edged out Marco Andretti (57.4668s) for the top spot in the session while Dale Coyne Racing rookie Santino Ferrucci was surprisingly third-fastest with a quick lap of 57.4818s.
Ferrucci led a group of four rookies that made it inside the top nine spots – further confirming the notion that this visit to Portland has leveled the playing field for inexperienced pilots in this series.
Additionally, it was Ferrucci who completed the most laps in the session with 32 circuits completed during the practice.
Jack Harvey was 5th in his part-time Michael Shank Racing entry (57.6984s) while Zach Veach continues a strong start to the weekend by placing 8th in the Group One Thousand One Honda (57.7225s).
Jordan King wrapped up the fine group of four rookies when he slotted in at 9th place, his quick lap being 57.7915s.
The current championship contenders were packed (mostly) in the Fast Six, with Power at the top of the chart being followed closely behind by Scott Dixon (P4, 57.5662s) and Josef Newgarden (P6, 57.7154s).
The hot hand lately has been Alexander Rossi, though the Andretti Autosport driver had a jumbled session that would only muster a fast lap of 58.2485s – 23rd quickest on the timing chart.
Other notables included the morning’s quickest driver, Sebastien Bourdais, in 10th place during the afternoon run. Bourdais is the most recently Indy car race winner at Portland, taking the checkered flag first in Champ Car’s final visit to the track in 2007.
The third and final practice of the weekend rolls off on Saturday with the green flag dropping at 2:10 PM ET (11:10 AM PT). The practice can be seen live on RaceControl.IndyCar.com, while qualifying will be held later in the afternoon starting at 6:20 PM ET (3:20 PM PT).
Image by Joe Skibinski/INDYCAR.