Ed Jones tops rain shortened Day 3 at Indy, Alonso a no-show

Ed Jones
Ed Jones

Rain cut short the final hour and a half of practice at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway on Day 3 that saw Ed Carpenter Racing Scuderia Corsa’s Ed Jones turn the fastest lap and Fernando Alonso never turn a lap while his car gets fixed.

Of the 36 drivers who are on the entry list for this race, 35 completed at least one lap in today’s practice session, as McLaren Racing’s Fernando Alonso, who crashed in yesterday’s practice session, was unable to get out on to the track in his #66 Chevrolet at all today.

Jones recorded a top lap time of 39.5008 seconds (227.543 miles per hour) around the four-turn, 2.5-mile (4.023-kilometer) Indianapolis Motor Speedway oval in Speedway, Indiana in his #63 Chevrolet in this practice session. He also turned the fastest no-tow speed of the week so far at 224.957mph

Honda drivers, meanwhile, rounded out the rest of the top five on the speed chart in this practice session led by Takuma Sato, Zach Veach, Sebastien Bourdais and Colton Herta.

"It was a great day!" Jones said. "To be quickest in overall and no-tow is a goal. More importantly, I think we made more gains with the handling of the car. As the conditions have changed, we've been able to keep up. We just have to keep adapting to the track changes for tomorrow and for qualifying."

Meanwhile, Alonso – returning to the Indianapolis 500 this year in search of a victory to complete the final leg of racing's Triple Crown – never made it on the track Thursday as his McLaren Racing team spent the day preparing a backup car after the two-time Formula 1 champion crashed his primary No. 66 Chevrolet in practice the day before.

Gil de Ferran, the 2003 Indianapolis 500 winner who now serves as sporting director at McLaren, said the team is not rushing to get the backup car ready, preparations that included an engine change when the powerplant in the primary car was found to be damaged in Wednesday's incident.

The Ed Carpenter Chevys are fast. Here Pigot and boss Carpenter run together
The Ed Carpenter Chevys are fast. Here Pigot and boss Carpenter run together

"While we have a number of experienced individuals in the team, we are still relatively new as a crew," de Ferran said. "Because of this and the fact that we have deep respect for Indianapolis, we are being careful and measured in our approach and want to ensure we're sending the best possible car out on track.

"Not running today was a serious setback to our Indy 500 program, but all is not lost. We should have a full day of practice and preparations for qualifying tomorrow and our goal will be to have a nice, clean day."

Jones, who finished third in the Indianapolis 500 two years ago as a rookie, is paired with team owner/driver Ed Carpenter and full-season driver Spencer Pigot in a three-car Indy 500 attack for the team. Carpenter was 8th (223.820 mph) on the no-tow list – designated as such because it comes without the aerodynamic tow from a car ahead on track by 10 seconds or less – while Pigot was 2nd (224.857 mph).

The no-tow list provides a good representation of how cars may perform in Crown Royal Armed Forces Qualifying this weekend, when they'll be on track alone for four-lap qualifications runs to determine the 33-car field.

Will Power - the Chevys again have a HP advantage for the 500
Will Power – the Chevys again have a HP advantage for the 500

"All things considered, I think all three drivers on the team feel pretty encouraged, and we are looking forward to the power turning up tomorrow in the Chevy engine and seeing what we can get out of the cars," said team owner Carpenter, a three-time Indy 500 pole sitter who finished second in last year's race.

Takuma Sato was second on the overall lap speed chart at 226.699 mph in the No. 30 Mi-Jack/Panasonic Honda. The Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing driver was eighth on the no-tow chart at 224.428 mph.

"I'd say it was a very productive day despite a little issue in the car and the weather," said Sato, winner of the 2017 Indy 500. "We've done a qualifying simulation and worked on the race setup. We found several positives and I'm pretty happy with that. We are quite satisfied with how today went."

There was one single-car incident on Thursday. Rookie Patricio O'Ward lost control of the No. 31 Carlin Chevrolet and spun into the Turn 2 SAFER Barrier. The 2018 Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires champion was uninjured, but the car sustained heavy damage and he did not return on track.

Day 3 Results

Pos No Name FTime Diff Gap Laps FSpeed Engine Team
1 63 Ed Jones 39.501 –.—- –.—- 37 227.843 Chevy Ed Carpenter Racing
2 30 Takuma Sato 39.700 0.1994 0.1994 47 226.699 Honda Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing
3 26 Zach Veach 39.811 0.3099 0.1105 58 226.070 Honda Andretti Autosport
4 18 Sebastien Bourdais 39.824 0.3230 0.0131 53 225.996 Honda Dale Coyne Racing w/Vasser-Sullivan
5 88 Colton Herta 39.919 0.4180 0.0950 73 225.458 Honda Harding Steinbrenner Racing
6 24 Sage Karam 39.929 0.4281 0.0101 86 225.401 Chevy Dreyer and Reinbold Racing
7 32 Kyle Kaiser 39.930 0.4290 0.0009 39 225.396 Chevy Juncos Racing
8 21 Spencer Pigot 39.941 0.4398 0.0108 66 225.335 Chevy Ed Carpenter Racing
9 9 Scott Dixon 39.947 0.4459 0.0061 53 225.300 Honda Chip Ganassi Racing Teams
10 22 Simon Pagenaud 39.955 0.4537 0.0078 40 225.256 Chevy Team Penske
11 3 Helio Castroneves 39.975 0.4739 0.0202 65 225.142 Chevy Team Penske
12 33 James Davison 39.989 0.4878 0.0139 60 225.064 Honda Dale Coyne with Byrd and Belardi
13 20 Ed Carpenter 39.993 0.4925 0.0047 50 225.038 Chevy Ed Carpenter Racing
14 12 Will Power 40.025 0.5244 0.0319 49 224.858 Chevy Team Penske
15 59 Max Chilton 40.035 0.5345 0.0101 42 224.802 Chevy Carlin
16 23 Charlie Kimball 40.036 0.5353 0.0008 67 224.797 Chevy Carlin
17 98 Marco Andretti 40.041 0.5400 0.0047 41 224.771 Honda Andretti Herta Autosport w/Curb-Agaj
18 48 JR Hildebrand 40.092 0.5916 0.0516 47 224.481 Chevy Dreyer and Reinbold Racing
19 25 Conor Daly 40.093 0.5919 0.0003 76 224.480 Honda Andretti Autosport
20 7 Marcus Ericsson 40.106 0.6052 0.0133 34 224.405 Honda Arrow Schmidt Peterson Motorsports
21 2 Josef Newgarden 40.117 0.6163 0.0111 39 224.343 Chevy Team Penske
22 27 Alexander Rossi 40.139 0.6383 0.0220 50 224.220 Honda Andretti Autosport
23 31 Patricio O'Ward 40.148 0.6473 0.0090 24 224.170 Chevy Carlin
24 15 Graham Rahal 40.155 0.6539 0.0066 57 224.133 Honda Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing
25 5 James Hinchcliffe 40.181 0.6806 0.0267 31 223.984 Honda Arrow Schmidt Peterson Motorsports
26 60 Jack Harvey 40.182 0.6809 0.0003 26 223.983 Honda Meyer Shank Racing with Arrow SPM
27 39 Pippa Mann 40.211 0.7103 0.0294 41 223.819 Chevy Clauson-Marshall Racing
28 77 Oriol Servia 40.307 0.8067 0.0964 49 223.284 Honda Arrow Schmidt Peterson Motorsports
29 42 Jordan King 40.327 0.8266 0.0199 43 223.173 Honda Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing
30 28 Ryan Hunter-Reay 40.345 0.8446 0.0180 38 223.074 Honda Andretti Autosport
31 4 Matheus Leist 40.364 0.8636 0.0190 34 222.969 Chevy AJ Foyt Enterprises
32 14 Tony Kanaan 40.389 0.8885 0.0249 34 222.831 Chevy AJ Foyt Enterprises
33 81 Ben Hanley 40.474 0.9734 0.0849 67 222.364 Chevy DragonSpeed
34 10 Felix Rosenqvist 40.596 1.0952 0.1218 41 221.697 Honda Chip Ganassi Racing Teams
35 19 Santino Ferrucci 40.824 1.3234 0.2282 60 220.457 Honda Dale Coyne Racing

Day 3 Non-Tow Speeds

Rank Car Driver Name Engine Non-Tow Time Non-Tow Speed Diff Gap
1 63 Jones, Ed Chevy 00:40.0077 224.957 –.—- –.—-
2 21 Pigot, Spencer Chevy 00:40.0201 224.887 0.0124 0.0124
3 22 Pagenaud, Simon Chevy 00:40.0235 224.868 0.0158 0.0034
4 12 Power, Will Chevy 00:40.0252 224.858 0.0175 0.0017
5 23 Kimball, Charlie Chevy 00:40.0361 224.797 0.0284 0.0109
6 98 Andretti, Marco Honda 00:40.1013 224.432 0.0936 0.0652
7 30 Sato, Takuma Honda 00:40.1020 224.428 0.0943 0.0007
8 20 Carpenter, Ed Chevy 00:40.2109 223.820 0.2032 0.1089
9 2 Newgarden, Josef Chevy 00:40.2442 223.635 0.2365 0.0333
10 7 Ericsson, Marcus (R) Honda 00:40.2561 223.569 0.2484 0.0119
11 27 Rossi, Alexander Honda 00:40.2749 223.464 0.2672 0.0188
12 15 Rahal, Graham Honda 00:40.3332 223.141 0.3255 0.0583
13 5 Hinchcliffe, James Honda 00:40.3349 223.132 0.3272 0.0017
14 28 Hunter-Reay, Ryan Honda 00:40.3454 223.074 0.3377 0.0105
15 25 Daly, Conor Honda 00:40.3519 223.038 0.3442 0.0065
16 26 Veach, Zach Honda 00:40.3591 222.998 0.3514 0.0072
17 81 Hanley, Ben (R) Chevy 00:40.4742 222.364 0.4665 0.1151
18 60 Harvey, Jack Honda 00:40.4900 222.277 0.4823 0.0158
19 42 King, Jordan (R) Honda 00:40.4902 222.276 0.4825 0.0002
20 32 Kaiser, Kyle Chevy 00:40.5058 222.190 0.4981 0.0156
21 48 Hildebrand, JR Chevy 00:40.5128 222.152 0.5051 0.0070
22 59 Chilton, Max Chevy 00:40.5446 221.978 0.5369 0.0318
23 9 Dixon, Scott Honda 00:40.5715 221.831 0.5638 0.0269
24 4 Leist, Matheus Chevy 00:40.6615 221.340 0.6538 0.0900
25 39 Mann, Pippa Chevy 00:40.6710 221.288 0.6633 0.0095
26 14 Kanaan, Tony Chevy 00:40.6745 221.269 0.6668 0.0035
27 88 Herta, Colton (R) Honda 00:40.6755 221.263 0.6678 0.0010
28 24 Karam, Sage Chevy 00:40.6774 221.253 0.6697 0.0019
29 3 Castroneves, Helio Chevy 00:40.6881 221.195 0.6804 0.0107
30 77 Servia, Oriol Honda 00:40.8057 220.557 0.7980 0.1176
31 19 Ferrucci, Santino (R) Honda 00:40.8242 220.457 0.8165 0.0185
32 18 Bourdais, Sebastien Honda 00:40.8544 220.295 0.8467 0.0302
33 31 O'Ward, Patricio (R) Chevy 00:41.0005 219.510 0.9928 0.1461
34 10 Rosenqvist, Felix (R) Honda 00:41.4026 217.378 1.3949 0.4021
35 33 Davison, James Honda 00:41.8166 215.226 1.8089 0.4140

Leave a Reply