Skip to content

Power leads Penske 1-2-3 on Indy 500 opening day of practice

May 11, 2014, 6:19 PM EDT

Power500Day1 AP

Team Penske topped Sunday’s opening practice for the 98th Indianapolis 500 with a 1-2-3 sweep of the top three positions, led by Will Power at a tow-assisted 223.057 mph lap in the No. 12 Verizon Chevrolet. Power clocked in 82 laps, second most on the day.

“Apart from the speed it was great,” Power said, since he focused on race setups. “I did quite a few laps. We anticipated it might be wet. It’s only practice the first day, but it’s always handy to be on top.”

He added, of the shift to practice today after racing Saturday, “It’s weird having to wake up and get back straight in the car on a different style of track. As soon as I got into it, it felt normal.”

Power’s two teammates, who also had help on their fliers, were next up. Juan Pablo Montoya was second in the No. 2 Verizon Chevrolet with Helio Castroneves third in the No. 3 Pennzoil Ultra Premium “Yellow Submarine” Chevrolet. They were both over 222 mph; Castroneves had the most with 83.

Best of the rest was JR Hildebrand in the No. 21 Preferred Freezer Services Chevrolet for Ed Carpenter, as the 2011 ‘500 Rookie-of-the-Year turned his first laps of the month and posted a late flier of 222.200 in a tow to end P4. Fellow American Ryan Hunter-Reay of Andretti Autosport rounded out the top five.

EJ Viso filled in for James Hinchcliffe, with the Canadian not yet cleared to drive the No. 27 United Fiber & Data Honda for Andretti Autosport, with a late best speed of 222.105 run in a three-car team draft.

That netted him P6 on the day, and Viso said the car felt stable, planted and with a solid baseline on his first day back in an IndyCar since the round at Houston last October. Viso withdrew ahead of the season finale at Fontana.

Twenty-four drivers took times. Of note, Kurt Busch made it to the Speedway after the NASCAR Sprint Cup race in Kansas last night and ended 12th with 31 laps completed and a best speed of 220.352 mph, and rookie Sage Karam completed the third and final phase of his Rookie Orientation Program in the morning in the No. 22 DRR Kingdom Racing Chevrolet.

IT WAS SUNDAY? OR IT WAS JUST A RACE-DAY HANGOVER?

Overall, the day had a bit of a weird vibe to it as it felt like not just the day changed from Saturday to Sunday, but the month changed from really “any other month” to “the Month of May.”

Crews, staff and media alike were all drained from full on “race day mode” on Saturday to then changing engines, pit positions, and doing rebuilds on cars ahead of the first day of practice on Sunday.

And with the Grand Prix of Indianapolis a Thursday-Friday-Saturday affair, if anything, today felt like a Monday at the track, rather than a Sunday. At least the vibe was one of a “Case of the Mondays.”

ADDITIONAL NEWS AND NOTES 

  • Ryan Briscoe, of NTT Data Chip Ganassi Racing, said his sixth place Saturday could have been better had it not been for a penalty for a pit safety infraction, hitting an air hose. He said the CGR team is improving, but still has a bit to do to catch the leaders.
  • Oriol Servia turned laps for Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing today, but his time didn’t register on timing & scoring.
  • Kyle O’Gara, who was set to run the Indy Lights Freedom 100 in a second Fan Force United entry, has withdrawn from the race. O’Gara tested at the series’ open test at IMS, but despite a trimmed out setup and max throttle, was more than one second off the pace.

Latest Posts
  1. Rosberg apologizes to Hamilton and fans for “error of judgement”

    Aug 29, 2014, 10:00 AM EDT

    Nico Rosberg AP

    German driver accepts responsibility for his on-track clash with Hamilton at Spa.

  2. Webber questions Mercedes’ future after Spa bust-up

    Aug 29, 2014, 9:30 AM EDT

    Mark Webber AP

    Former Red Bull driver says that the management at Stuttgart must reel its drivers in to avoid a repeat of the incident we saw at Spa.

  3. Mercedes drivers “remain free to race” following meeting today

    Aug 29, 2014, 8:19 AM EDT

    F1 Grand Prix of Belgium Getty Images

    Rosberg apologizes for incident during the Belgian Grand Prix that caused Hamilton to retire.

  4. With nothing to lose, IndyCar title contender Pagenaud charges into Fontana

    Aug 29, 2014, 8:00 AM EDT

    Simon Pagenaud AP

    Championship or not, a race win on Saturday night at Auto Club Speedway (9 p.m. ET, NBCSN and NBC Sports Live Extra) would mark an important milestone since the Frenchman resumed his IndyCar career three years ago.

  5. As McLaren eyes a big-name signing, Button admits he may be forced to retire

    Aug 29, 2014, 7:00 AM EDT

    F1 Grand Prix of Belgium Getty Images

    2009 world champion could be forced out of McLaren by the arrival of a big name.

  6. Tony Stewart’s return to NASCAR may be one of hardest things he’s ever done

    Aug 28, 2014, 8:22 PM EDT

    Coke Zero 400 - Qualifying Getty Images

    While he’ll be returning to the familiarity of being in a race car and around fellow drivers and race fans Friday at Atlanta Motor Speedway after missing the last three races to grieve over the Kevin Ward Jr. tragedy, it’s almost as if Tony Stewart will be starting his career anew.

  7. Drivers, SHR crew chiefs react to Stewart’s return on social media

    Aug 28, 2014, 7:40 PM EDT

    FedEx 400 Benefiting Autism Speaks - Practice Getty Images

    First reactions from the NASCAR community are starting to emerge after today’s announcement.

  8. NASCAR AMERICA: Trouble at Turner Scott Motorsports (VIDEO)

    Aug 28, 2014, 7:00 PM EDT

    WinStar World Casino & Resort 400 - Practice Getty Images

    NASCAR AMERICA has more on the situation surrounding one of the Nationwide and Truck Series’ more prominent outfits.

  9. NASCAR AMERICA: Tony Stewart’s decision to go racing again (VIDEO)

    Aug 28, 2014, 6:17 PM EDT

    Samuel Deeds 400 At The Brickyard - Practice Getty Images

    USA Today’s Nate Ryan calls in to NASCAR AMERICA to talk about the impact of the three-time Sprint Cup champion’s return this weekend at Atlanta.

  10. Tony Stewart to return to race at Atlanta this weekend

    Aug 28, 2014, 4:38 PM EDT

    Stewart back at atl 2014 Getty Images

    After missing the last three NASCAR Sprint Cup races following the tragic accident that claimed the life of 20-year-old sprint car driver Kevin Ward Jr. at an upstate dirt track, NASCAR star Tony Stewart will return to racing this weekend at Atlanta Motor Speedway.

  11. WATCH LIVE: NASCAR AMERICA at 5 pm ET – More on Tony Stewart’s return

    Aug 28, 2014, 4:21 PM EDT

    NASCAR America

    They don’t call it Hotlanta for nothing. As we get closer to Sunday’s Sprint Cup night race at Atlanta Motor Speedway, things are definitely heating up.

  12. Team Penske on verge of ending 8-year IndyCar title drought

    Aug 28, 2014, 3:30 PM EDT

    Roger Penske AP

    “The Captain” and his crew have not celebrated an IndyCar Series title since Sam Hornish Jr. won it all in 2006.

  13. IndyCar championship to be awarded in primetime this Saturday on NBCSN

    Aug 28, 2014, 2:45 PM EDT

    MAVTV 500 Getty Images

    NBCSN coverage of the Verizon IndyCar Series’ title tilt at Auto Club Speedway begins Friday at 7 p.m. ET with qualifying, followed by the MAV TV 500 on Saturday at 9 p.m. ET.

  14. IndyCar title quest continues for Helio Castroneves

    Aug 28, 2014, 2:00 PM EDT

    Honda Indy Toronto - Day 1 Getty Images

    The three-time Indianapolis 500 winner gets another chance to finally capture an IndyCar Series crown this Saturday night at Auto Club Speedway (9 p.m. ET, NBCSN and NBC Sports Live Extra).

  15. Wilson seeks bounce back, first 2014 podium at Fontana finale

    Aug 28, 2014, 1:00 PM EDT

    JWilIndy Getty Images

    Justin Wilson back at the track where he got injured a year ago, seeking to end 2014 on a high note.

  16. Could Tony Stewart return to race this weekend at Atlanta?

    Aug 28, 2014, 12:49 PM EDT

    (AP Photo/Cheryl Senter, File) AP

    Could Tony Stewart’s three-week absence from NASCAR Sprint Cup racing in light of the Kevin Ward Jr. tragedy be coming to an end?

  17. Report: McLaren trying for Vettel or Alonso

    Aug 28, 2014, 12:00 PM EDT

    Spanish F1 Grand Prix - Previews Getty Images

    McLaren continues to push to try to bring a bigger name driver to its team ahead of Honda’s 2015 return.

  18. Report: Mercedes to hold on Hamilton contract talks until postseason

    Aug 28, 2014, 11:00 AM EDT

    Belgium F1 GP Auto Racing AP

    Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes will wait to extend their deal until after the season ends.

  19. Dixon leads, Pagenaud has accident during Wednesday Fontana test

    Aug 28, 2014, 10:33 AM EDT

    MAVTV 500 Getty Images

    IndyCar banks a night of testing before this weekend’s MAVTV 500.

  20. Jamie McMurray having a much different season than he’s used to on and off the track in 2014

    Aug 27, 2014, 11:03 PM EDT

    Kyle Larson, left, and Jamie McMurray, right. (AP Photo/Chuck Burton) AP

    It’s pretty simple and straight-forward what Jamie McMurray must do in the next two races if he has any hope of making this year’s expanded 16-driver field for the Chase for the Sprint Cup.

Video from NASCAR America

Inside Tony Stewart's return to racing
Top 10 NASCAR Driver Searches
  1. J. Gordon (2198)
  2. K. Busch (1970)
  3. K. Harvick (1728)
  4. K. Larson (1512)
  5. J. Logano (1352)
  1. R. Blaney (1175)
  2. B. Keselowski (1129)
  3. C. Elliott (1127)
  4. J. Boston (1071)
  5. T. Stewart (898)