IndyCar Iowa: Herta leads Daly, Power in first practice

Andretti Autosport’s Colton Herta topped the first practice sessopm for IndyCar’s Iowa 250s at Iowa Speedway, which put him just 0.0548sec ahead of Conor Daly, in the Carlin-Chevrolet, with Penske’s Will Power in third.

Herta, who lies second in the championship, lapped the 0.894-mile course in 18.713sec, an average speed of 171.990mph, on the 43rd of his 47 total laps. That usurped Daly who has switched to Carlin due to this being a non-Indy 500 oval, as his road course berth at Ed Carpenter Racing seat has been taken over by oval specialist team boss.

Most drivers squeezed in two laps on fresh tires to simulate their runs in qualifying which has a unique format for this weekend’s double-header. As usual on ovals, qualifying is a one-by-one affair, with each car running two consecutive flying laps. However, grid positions on this occasion will not depend on an average of these two laps. Instead, the first flying lap will set the grid for this evening’s race, and the second lap will set the grid for tomorrow evening’s race.

Will Power was fastest of the Team Penske-Chevrolet trio on 171.092mph, separated from his teammates Josef Newgarden and Simon Pagenaud by the Dale Coyne Racing with Vasser-Sullivan car of Santino Ferrucci.

Runaway points leader Scott Dixon was seventh, ahead of Rinus VeeKay in Carpenter’s #21 machine. That made the 2019 Indy Lights runner-up fastest of the rookies, who got an extra 30 minutes on track before the veterans came out for their hour-long session.

Marcus Ericsson, who finished fourth last Sunday, took ninth to outpace his teammate, compatriot and Road America winner Felix Rosenqvist.

Tony Kanaan in the newly Bryant-liveried #14 AJ Foyt Racing-Chevy was a fine 10th fastest in his return to the series.

Qualifying begins at 4.30pm local (Central) time/ 5.30pm ET, with tonight’s race due to start at 8.10pm CT / 9.10pm ET.

1 Colton HertaAndretti Harding Steinbrenner Autosport47 18.712  171.990
2 Conor Daly Carlin60 18.767 0.054 171.488
3 Will Power Team Penske58 18.810 0.098 171.092
4 Santino FerrucciDale Coyne Racing with Vasser Sullivan72 18.812 0.099 171.080
5 Josef Newgarden Team Penske72 18.812 0.099 171.077
6 Simon Pagenaud Team Penske73 18.850 0.137 170.733
7 Scott Dixon Chip Ganassi Racing54 18.919 0.206 170.111
8 Rinus van Kalmthout Ed Carpenter Racing123 19.004 0.291 169.353
9 Marcus Ericsson Chip Ganassi Racing72 19.035 0.323 169.071
10 Tony Kanaan A.J. Foyt Enterprises48 19.036 0.323 169.066
11 Takuma Sato Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing53 19.056 0.344 168.884
12 Oliver AskewArrow McLaren SP91 19.111 0.398 168.401
13 Zach Veach Andretti Autosport64 19.132 0.419 168.216
14 Marco AndrettiAndretti Herta Autosport with Marco & Curb-Agajani62 19.136 0.423 168.186
15 Patricio O’WardArrow McLaren SP95 19.156 0.444 168.004
16 Ryan Hunter-Reay Andretti Autosport51 19.162 0.450 167.950
17 Alex PalouDale Coyne Racing with Team Goh150 19.194 0.481 167.672
18 Charlie Kimball A.J. Foyt Enterprises55 19.247 0.534 167.210
19 Felix Rosenqvist Chip Ganassi Racing72 19.314 0.601 166.631
20 Alexander Rossi Andretti Autosport60 19.319 0.606 166.592
21 Ed Carpenter Ed Carpenter Racing61 19.325 0.613 166.534
22 Jack Harvey Meyer Shank Racing111 19.353 0.640 166.296
23 Graham Rahal Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing49 19.578 0.865 164.384

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