Photo: Joe Skibinski, Indycar
Things are back to normal at St. Pete. Josef newgarden and team Penske teammate Will Power ended the lone Friday practice 1-2 on the speed chart. Newgarden’s time of 1:00.8029 was 0.083 seconds faster than Power. Colton Herta was third quick. The top five were within 0.0963 seconds of Newgarden.
The session was red flagged with just a couple minutes to go when Sebastien Bourdais spun. Cars returned to the track with just seconds left, but no one had time to get another completed lap.
Discussing today’s track conditions and the closeness of the times, Newgarden said that the track was “really high grip today.” He believed that the high grip contributed to the close speeds among the top five.
The crowd got bigger as the day went on. I’m not sure that it reached the 20,000 capacity, but a decent number of people were there. Mask wearing, which was good at first, diminished as more people came.
I didn’t care for waiting until 4:15 for the first appearance by Indycar today. I understand why a practice needed to be cut from the schedule, but an earlier time for your featured series would be better.
Two liveries I really liked- Simon Pagenaud’s Australian Gold.
And Alec Palou’s NTT Data. I love the number in a circle.
Notes- Dalton Keller seemed to be having an engine issue. His car sounded very rough entering turn 1.
It was interesting watching Romain Grosjean try different lines through the first turn.
Tomorrow Indycar has practice at 9:45 a6 qualifying at 1:45. Both sessions are live on Peacock. The qualifying will re air on NBCSN at 10 pm Eastern.