Kanaan fastest in final practice for Indy 500

by Jordan Groves

Tony Kanaan has finished the final practice session for this Sunday’s 2019 NTT IndyCar Series Indianapolis 500 as the fastest driver. The A.J. Foyt Enterprises driver set a 225.517-mph fastest lap in the ninety-minute final session, with all thirty-three cars now locked away until race day.

The final practice session got off to a slightly delayed start due to rain. The cars got out onto the track after almost twenty minutes of waiting, with the field soon getting up to speed and running in packs to simulate race conditions.

Despite the duration of the session being much shorter than usual practice sessions, a combined total of 1755 laps were run between the thirty-three drivers, with Kanaan finding himself on top of the time-sheets when the chequered flag flew. His best lap was just five-hundredths of a second faster than second-placed rookie, Santino Ferrucci, for Dale Coyne Racing. Ferrucci, in particular, was pleased with the handling of his car, stating post-session that he was able to overtake many cars and was looking forward to Sunday’s race.

2017 Indianapolis 500 winner, Takuma Sato, was third-fastest ahead of Indy 500 newcomer and Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing team-mate, Jordan King. The remaining two Dale Coyne Racing cars of Sebastien Bourdais and James Davison were just behind in fifth and sixth respectively.

Alexander Rossi, the man that many believe will be in contention for the win on Sunday, was seventh-fastest. Many believe that Rossi’s #27 Andretti Autosport Honda is one of the best cars in race trim in the field. Carlin‘s Charlie Kimball was just behind in eighth-place, with Harding Steinbrenner Racing‘s Colton Herta and Team Penske‘s Will Power rounding out the top ten. Power’s Penske team-mates, Helio CastronevesJosef Newgarden and pole-sitter, Simon Pagenaud, were further back in positions, twelve, thirteen and twenty-two.

Graham Rahal flirted with danger during the session when he went wide on the exit of turn two and tapped the outside wall. Thankfully, no substantial damage was made to his #15 RLLR Honda, with Rahal blaming the scare on understeer. Graham ended the session seventeenth.

One of the more frustrated drivers after today’s final practice session was reigning IndyCar champion, Scott Dixon. The Chip Ganassi Racing driver was unhappy with the way that his #9 Honda was handling out on the track, stating post-session that there was “a fundamental issue” with the car. He ended the session in nineteenth-place, just ahead of his twentieth-placed rookie team-mate, Felix Rosenqvist.

As has been the case all month long, the field was really close on the time-sheets. The top thirty-two drivers of the thirty-three total were separated by just six-tenths of a second, with only DragonSpeed‘s Ben Hanley running comparatively off of the pace.

With final practice complete, the thirty-three entered cars will be locked away until race day. The 103rd running of the Indianapolis 500 will take place this Sunday, May 26.

Credit: Chris Owens / Courtesy of IndyCar

2019 NTT IndyCar Series – Indianapolis 500 – Final practice top twelve results:

POSNO.DRIVERNATTEAMSPEED (MPH)
114Tony KanaanBRAA.J. Foyt Enterprises225.517
219Santino Ferrucci (R)USADale Coyne Racing225.486
330Takuma SatoJAPRahal Letterman Lanigan Racing225.468
442Jordan King (R)GBRRahal Letterman Lanigan Racing225.337
533James DavisonAUSDale Coyne Racing with Byrd / Bollinger / Belardi225.314
618Sebastien BourdaisFRADale Coyne Racing with Vasser Sullivan225.288
727Alexander RossiUSAAndretti Autosport224.692
823Charlie KimballUSACarlin224.650
988Colton Herta (R)USAHarding Steinbrenner Racing224.527
1012Will PowerAUSTeam Penske224.240
115James HinchcliffeCANArrow Schmidt Peterson224.152
123Helio CastronevesBRATeam Penske224.094

Full results of practice can be found by clicking the following link: http://www.imscdn.com/indycar_media/documents/2019-05-24/05-24-19%20Carb%20Day%20practice%20results.pdf

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