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27th of May 2017


Sébastien Bourdais leads Fast Friday Indy 500 practice, F1's Alonso is fourth

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If ‘Fast Friday’ was any indication of qualifying for the Indianapolis 500, Sébastien Bourdais and Honda-powered teams appear to be the favorites to score the most points over the next two days.

The four-time Champ Car World Series champion led a 1-2-3-4 HPD effort on Friday at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway with a 233.116 mph lap set before rain arrived and washed out a majority of final practice before time trials.

The 38-year-old set the fastest time with a tow, and led Andretti Autosport’s Ryan Hunter-Reay, Takuma Sato and Fernando Alonso. Juan Pablo Montoya was the fastest Chevrolet in fifth. It’s worth noting that Hunter-Reay set the fastest lap without a tow at 231.273mph.

Will Power’s 231.682 mph lap was the fastest no-tow lap by a Chevrolet.  

In anticipation of qualifying, IndyCar regulations permitted an engine turbocharger boost increase of 10 kilopascals – an atmospheric pressure measurement that provided roughly 30 added horsepower to the Chevrolet and Honda engines.

The bump to 140 kPa remains in effect until the completion of qualifying but will not be used during the race itself.

Two heavy-impact crashes marred the day.

The first was Spencer Pigot, now driving for Juncos Racing, who made contact on the exit of turn two.

"I’m not really sure (what happened)," Pigot said. "Entered turn two, it had not been an issue for us all week. Before I knew it, I was backwards. We’ll have to go back and look and see what happened."

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Zach Veach crashed with 30 minutes remaining in the session, hitting in the middle of turns one and two in his AJ Foyt Racing Chevrolet.

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After turning an install lap on Thuraday, Buddy Lazier finally hit the track for a full practice session in his Lazier Racing No. 44 Chevrolet. The 1996 winner was also slowest, posting just a 219.640mph lap.

Indy 500 practice resumes Saturday at 8 a.m. ET, providing teams a chance to finalize their setups for qualifications. Qualifying for the 101st Indianapolis 500 begins at 11 a.m. ET. Coverage can be found on WatchESPN from 11 a.m.-3 p.m. before shifting to ABC from 4-6 p.m.

The complete Fast Friday times can be viewed below.


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By Matt Weaver

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