Team Penske rookie Scott McLaughlin finished at the top of his first career NTT IndyCar Series session, going fastest in practice two for the Firestone Grand Prix of Monterey. McLaughlin was one of the fastest cars throughout a red-flag filled session finding himself consistently inside the top ten for most of the morning.
All four Penske cars found themselves in the top ten at the end of the session with Simon Pagenaud fourth, Will Power fifth and championship contender Josef Newgarden in tenth. For a long portion of practice, Newgarden, McLaughlin and Pagenaud occupied the top three positions of the scoring sheets.
The first red flag of the session came out within the first ten minutes of the 45-minute session after Dalton Kellett suffered serious damage in turn four. The red flag ate up 12 minutes minutes of valuable track time as Kellett’s A.J. Foyt Enterprises machine was rescued from the gravel and the tyre barrier was repaired.
Practice resumed with 25 minutes to go, as teams began their qualifying simulations on fresh primary tyres. Just like first practice, many drivers still found themselves going off course. Colton Herta, Takuma Sato and more all found themselves dropping tyres into the gravel across the session.
Another red flag came out with ten minutes to go, as Rinus VeeKay went off-track in the same spot as Kellett in turn four, his second offroad adventure of the session. Luckily, this red flag did not take as long as before and everyone was able to get at least one lap on the alternate tyres to gather data as the session went green with three and a half laps to go.
WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca looked a lot more like the congested Interstate 405 as drivers looked for an opening to set a fast lap up until the checkered flag, with the top ten shuffling greatly.
Defending Laguna Seca race winner Herta finished the session second fastest, while championship leader Alex Palou finished third. While lap time isn’t everything in practice, he was the fastest driver of the top five in points, with his title rivals Patricio O’Ward and teammate Scott Dixon finishing twentieth and eighteenth respectively as the teams collected data.
O’Ward’s teammate Felix Rosenqvist found himself sixth fastest, followed by Alexander Rossi who also finished in the top ten in first practice yesterday.
Ryan Hunter-Reay finished eighth ahead of his second-to-last race for Andretti Autosport, with Ed Jones once again showing pace with the Dale Coyne Racing with Vasser-Sullivan crew after finishing fourth in first practice.
Qualifying for the Firestone Grand Prix of Monterey takes place later today at 1705 EST / 1405 PST / 2205 BST.
Firestone Grand Prix of Monterey Practice 2 Results
|RANK||CAR NO.||DRIVER||NAT||TEAM||BEST TIME|
|1||3||Scott McLaughlin (R)||NZL||Team Penske||01:10.875 sec.|
|2||26||Colton Herta||USA||Andretti Autosport||01:11.022 sec.|
|3||10||Alex Palou||ESP||Chip Ganassi Racing||01:11.031 sec.|
|4||22||Simon Pagenaud||FRA||Team Penske||01:11.338 sec.|
|5||12||Will Power||AUS||Team Penske||01:11.393 sec.|
|6||7||Felix Rosenqvist||SWE||Arrow McLaren SP||01:11.460 sec.|
|7||27||Alexander Rossi||USA||Andretti Autosport||01:11.491 sec.|
|8||28||Ryan Hunter-Reay||USA||Andretti Autosport||01:11.520 sec.|
|9||18||Ed Jones||UAE||Dale Coyne Racing w/ Vasser-Sullivan||01:11.580 sec.|
|10||2||Josef Newgarden||USA||Team Penske||01:11.611 sec.|
|11||60||Jack Harvey||GBR||Meyer Shank Racing||01:11.703 sec.|
|12||8||Marcus Ericsson||SWE||Chip Ganassi Racing||01:11.716 sec.|
|13||29||James Hinchcliffe||CAN||Andretti Steinbrenner Autosport||01:11.722 sec.|
|14||15||Graham Rahal||USA||Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing||01:11.844 sec.|
|15||45||Oliver Askew||USA||Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing||01:11.921 sec.|
|16||51||Romain Grosjean (R)||FRA||Dale Coyne Racing w/ Rick Ware Racing||01:12.050 sec.|
|17||59||Max Chilton||GBR||Carlin||01:12.059 sec.|
|18||9||Scott Dixon||NZL||Chip Ganassi Racing||01:12.095 sec.|
|19||77||Callum Ilott (R)||GBR||Juncos Hollinger Racing||01:12.111 sec.|
|20||5||Pato O’Ward||MEX||Arrow McLaren SP||01:12.134 sec.|
|21||06||Helio Castroneves||BRA||Meyer Shank Racing||01:12.281 sec.|
|22||14||Sebastien Bourdais||FRA||A.J. Foyt Enterprises||01:12.333 sec.|
|23||20||Conor Daly||USA||Ed Carpenter Racing||01:12.412 sec.|
|24||48||Jimmie Johnson (R)||USA||Chip Ganassi Racing||01:12.431 sec.|
|25||21||Rinus VeeKay||NED||Ed Carpenter Racing||01:12.585 sec.|
|26||30||Takuma Sato||JPN||Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing||01:12.867 sec.|
|27||4||Dalton Kellett||CAN||A.J. Foyt Enterprises||01:13.030 sec.|