Alex Palou leads Penske duo Newgarden and McLaughlin in final practice at Barber

Spread the love

Alex Palou led a shortened session, that ended with a spin for Helio Castroneves.

Photo credits: Penske Entertainment | Karl Zemlin

Practice 2 in Barber Motorsports Park finished with Chip Ganassi driver Alex Palou on top. Josef Newgarden and Scott McLaughlin closed the top-3.Chip Ganassi Racing had a good session, with Palou and Dixon in the Top-5, championship leader Marcus Ericsson finishing 10th and rookie Marcus Armstrong showing promising pace in 15th. CGR was arguably second-best in Long Beach and seems to have hit the ground running in Barber.

Then, Penske drivers Josef Newgarden and Scott McLaughlin closed the top-3. Teammate Will Power though finished the session in a lowly 17th place. Team Penske is on the run, but after a disappointing race in Long Beach, the team wants to go to the first road course of the year with a dominant car.Race winners in Long Beach Andretti have brought a good package to Barber, with Colton Herta and Romain Grosjean in the top 6, with DeFrancesco and Kirkwood 11th and 12th respectively. After two disappointing races, the team wants to carry its Long Beach momentum to Barber.Last year`s race winner Pato O`Ward finished the session in 9th place, behind teammate Alexander Rossi, with Felix Rosenqvist crossing the line in 13th place. McLaren`s road course package last season was one of the best in the field, and with Pato O`Ward wanting to come back after his shenanigans in Long Beach, making him lose his championship lead to a consistent Marcus Ericsson, it can be expected that the team will be on the fight t for pole later today.Christian Lundaard was notable again, finishing in 7th place with a good pace throughout the session. It`s a sight of relief for Rahal, after a disappointing start to the year, far off last year`s rhythm. Teammates Graham Rahal and Jack Harvey finished 16th and 21st. Another highlight was Callum Ilott, ending the session in 14th place with his Juncos.It was a mostly trouble-free session, only with a couple of off-track excursions through the runoff, rookie driver Benjamin Pedersen going to the grass on the exit of turn 2. At the end an incident happened with four-time Indy 500 champion Helio Castroneves. The Brazilian spun out of turn 9, stalling his engine and causing a red flag with 46 seconds remaining to the session. The session didn`t resume.