Portland GP Test Day: Dixon over Power in session 2 (Update)

Sebastien Bourdais
Sebastien Bourdais

UPDATE Sebastien Bourdais has raced at Portland International Raceway five times in his Indy car career, winning Champ Car races in 2004 and 2007.

But after his first laps in the 2018 Indy car at Portland, he felt like he was visiting for the first time.

"It's narrower than I remember it," the four-time Indy car champion said during a break Thursday at INDYCAR's Open Test at the track. "The width goes from super-wide to very narrow. It's probably the narrowest place we go all season. It's just a feeling you just have to get used to again."

Bourdais was one of 25 Verizon IndyCar Series drivers to test at the 1.964-mile road course as the Indy cars returned to the Pacific Northwest for the first time in more than a decade. Verizon IndyCar Series points leader Scott Dixon led the day with a lap of 58.3593 seconds, 121.153 mph, in the No. 9 PNC Bank Chip Ganassi Racing Honda.

Will Power was second at 58.3928, 121.083 in the No. 12 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet while his Team Penske teammate, Josef Newgarden, was third at 58.4637, 120.937 mph in the No. 1 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet.

Will Power
Will Power

Power and Bourdais are among the seven drivers with previous Indy car experience at Portland. Verizon IndyCar Series points leader Scott Dixon, who raced at the track in 2002, agreed with Bourdais, saying the changes, coupled with the new car, are the biggest factors in the new feel.

"Totally different," Dixon said. "The track itself is different, the surface is different. The cars are totally different. It's almost like we're are a new track again."

The biggest change is a re-pavement and reconfiguration of the track done following the 2007 season. Bourdais said improvements, which include widening of Turns 4-6 and the addition of curbing, made a big difference.

"The curbing situation is different enough that it changes everything," he said. "The new pavement, obviously, there used to be some concrete patches which dictated you use a certain line and really hit the outside tires on it. It used to be a very specific and typical racetrack. And now it's got a very different characteristic. You're really shooting for something different.

"The back chicane used to have a big mound that you had to go over and that was kind of widening the track a bit. That's gone, so the line feels extremely narrow, especially as quick as we're going through there. Quite a different feel."

The race weekend begins with two practice sessions slated for Friday. Both will be available on RaceControl.IndyCar.com. NBCSN will televise the Grand Prix of Portland at 2:30 p.m. ET on Sunday.

Scott Dixon
Scott Dixon

08/30/18 If Thursday's test day is an indication, Scott Dixon plans to take the fight to Alexander Rossi and Will Power in his battle to win his 5th title.

Dixon turned the fastest lap in session 2, which was run in cooler conditions, with a time of 58.359s to lead Will Power by just 0.0335s.

With 1-second covering the top-21 drivers, Josef Newgarden and Marco Andretti rounded out the top-5.

How meaningful are today's times? We'll find out tomorrow when official practice gets underway at Portland International Raceway and everyone starts to show their real hand.

Test Session 2 Results

Pos No Name FTime Diff Gap Laps FSpeed Engine Team
1 9 Scott Dixon 58.359 –.—- –.—- 60 119.981 Honda Chip Ganassi Racing Teams
2 12 Will Power 58.393 0.0335 0.0335 52 119.912 Chevy Team Penske
3 1 Josef Newgarden 58.464 0.1044 0.0709 56 119.767 Chevy Team Penske
4 98 Marco Andretti 58.612 0.2530 0.1486 45 119.463 Honda Andretti Herta Autosport with CA
5 26 Zach Veach 58.663 0.3032 0.0502 56 119.361 Honda Andretti Autosport
6 18 Sebastien Bourdais 58.703 0.3438 0.0406 72 119.278 Honda Dale Coyne Racing with VS
7 28 Ryan Hunter-Reay 58.722 0.3624 0.0186 46 119.240 Honda Andretti Autosport
8 10 Ed Jones 58.728 0.3685 0.0061 57 119.228 Honda Chip Ganassi Racing Teams
9 27 Alexander Rossi 58.740 0.3808 0.0123 55 119.203 Honda Andretti Autosport
10 60 Jack Harvey 58.789 0.3958 0.0485 55 119.105 Honda Meyer Shank Racing with SPM
11 20 Jordan King 58.824 0.4648 0.0355 42 119.033 Chevy Ed Carpenter Racing
12 4 Matheus Leist 58.897 0.5378 0.0730 45 118.885 Chevy AJ Foyt Enterprises
13 30 Takuma Sato 58.955 0.5959 0.1130 57 118.768 Honda Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing
14 88 Gabby Chaves 58.972 0.4315 0.0248 53 118.735 Chevy Harding Racing
15 5 James Hinchcliffe 58.981 0.6220 0.0094 60 118.716 Honda Schmidt Peterson Motorsports
16 19 Pietro Fittipaldi 58.982 0.6230 0.0010 53 118.714 Honda Dale Coyne Racing
17 15 Graham Rahal 59.036 0.6771 0.0541 43 118.605 Honda Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing
18 22 Simon Pagenaud 59.117 0.7573 0.0802 42 118.444 Chevy Team Penske
19 6 Carlos Munoz 59.162 0.8029 0.0456 59 118.353 Honda Schmidt Peterson Motorsports
20 21 Spencer Pigot 59.263 0.9035 0.1006 36 118.152 Chevy Ed Carpenter Racing
21 39 Santino Ferrucci 59.291 0.9316 0.0281 60 118.096 Honda Dale Coyne Racing
22 23 Charlie Kimball 59.516 1.1564 0.2248 49 117.650 Chevy Carlin
23 14 Tony Kanaan 59.541 1.1812 0.0248 45 117.601 Chevy AJ Foyt Enterprises
24 59 Max Chilton 59.643 1.2834 0.1022 55 117.399 Chevy Carlin
25 32 Alfonso Celis Jr 59.651 0.6382 0.0335 27 117.382 Chevy Juncos Racing

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