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Indy 500: Fast Friday boost tops 227.5mph

After having successfully completed their program of practice testing and developing early, Andretti Autosport's five-car squad has essentially sat out Thursday on the sidelines, but roared back into life with an impressive dominating performance on Fast Friday that saw them take four of the top ten spots.

As well as Andretti on the lead spot, Ryan Hunter-Reay was in third with a lap speed of 227.540mph (39.5535s), James Hinchcliffe was sixth place (225.974mph, 39.8276s) and Ana Beatriz an impressive seventh (225.653mph, 39.8842s).

"All of the credit for our speed goes to the entire Andretti Autosport team," said Hunter-Reay. "Everybody's been digging really deep to get everything out of the cars, and that says a lot about this team. We're all working together on and off the track, and that makes a huge difference."

"From where we're sitting, we're very happy," agreed Hinchcliffe. "We've made a couple of gains throughout the day, and we're just going to polish the GoDaddy car, put it away and really focus on tomorrow."

"I think the Andretti team did an awesome job and now the cars are pretty fast, so I am proud today," said Beatriz. "If we want to make sure we are in the top ten I think we still need to work a little bit, and hopefully tomorrow we'll get some more speed and get a little closer to our teammates."

Of the Andretti line-up, only Sebastian Saavedra missed out on the top ten finishing back in 19th position with a lap of 224.661mph (40.0604s), while the missing Penske man was championship leader Will Power who was just outside the top ten in 11th with a lap of 225.288mph (39.9488s).

"We accomplished a fair bit with our Verizon car today," said Power. "We would've liked to find just a touch more speed, although we always want that. Looking ahead to tomorrow: We're in good shape, really, and we will give it a go."

With Andretti and Penske proving so strong, the only Honda representation in the top ten was from the Ganassi duo of Scott Dixon in fifth (226.224mph, 39.7836s) and Dario Franchitti in ninth (225.370mph, 39.9344s).

"We're definitely not where we need to be," admitted Dixon. "I sort of got a big tow lap there at the end that sort of pulled us up the chart, but realistically I think we're around ninth. We're not where we want to be."

"Scott and I are the first two of the Honda-powered cars right now, and I think we have some work to do," agreed Franchitti. "That's it, really. It can't be roses every day, and you just need to keep pushing."



Related Pictures

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Helio Castroneves testing the new speedway specification aerokits at Indianapolis Motor Speedway in April. [Picture credit: Ryan Briscoe/Twitter]
Ryan Hunter-Reay #28 Team DHL Sun Drop Citrus Soda Andretti Autosport during practice for the 96th running of the Indianapolis 500. 12-27 May, 2012, Indianapolis, Indiana, USA. (c) 2012 Dan R. Boyd LAT Photo USA (Photo credit: INDYCAR/LAT USA)
Marco Andretti #26 Team RC Cola Andretti Autosport during practice for the 96th running of the Indianapolis 500. 12-27 May, 2012, Indianapolis, Indiana, USA. (c) 2012 Dan R. Boyd, LAT Photo USA (Photo credit: INDYCAR/LAT USA)
Scott Dixon, driver of the #9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet IndyCar V-6, celebrates his victory Sunday, April 19, 2015 after winning the Verizon IndyCar Series Grand Prix of Long Beach in the streets of Long Beach, California. (Photo by Russell LaBounty/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Chevrolet sweeps the podium as Juan Pablo Montoya (l to r), driver of the #2 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet V-6 IndyCar; Scott Dixon, driver of the #9 Target Verizon Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet V-6 and Helio Castroneves, driver of the #3 Automobile Club of Southern California Team Penske Chevrolet V-6, celebrate Saturday, April 18, 2015 after finishing third, first and second in the Verizon IndyCar Series Grand Prix of Long Beach through the streets of Long Beach, California. (Photo by Russell LaBounty/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Scott Dixon, driver of the #9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet IndyCar V6 pumps his fist as he crosses the finish line, winning the Verizon IndyCar Series Grand Prix of Long Beach on Sunday, April 19, 2015 in the streets of Long Beach, California. (Photo by Phillip Abbott/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Scott Dixon, driver of the #9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet IndyCar V6 races to victory Sunday, April 19, 2015 winning the Verizon IndyCar Series Grand Prix of Long Beach in the streets of Long Beach, California. (Photo by Phillip Abbott/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Helio Castroneves and Scott Dixon lead the field into Turn 1 during the start of the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach on Sunday April 19 2015. (Photo by: Richard Dowdy for IndyCar Media)
Scott Dixon enters Turn 3 during the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach on Sunday April 19 2015. (Photo by: Richard Dowdy for IndyCar Media)
Scott Dixon navigates the fountain turn complex during the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach on Sunday April 19 2015. (Photo by: Richard Dowdy for IndyCar Media)
Scott Dixon wins the 41st Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach on Sunday April 19 2015. (Photo by: John Cote for IndyCar Media)
The confetti flies in Victory Lane for Scott Dixon, Helio Castroneves, and Juan Pablo Montoya on Sunday April 19 2015. (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Scott Dixon celebrates in Victory Lane following his win in the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach on Sunday April 19 2015. (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Scott Dixon drinks the champagne following his win in the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach on Sunday April 19 2015. (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Scott Dixon drinks the champagne following his win in the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach on Sunday April 19 2015. (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Josef Newgarden in his pit stand. (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Josef Newgarden apexes the hairpin turn during qualifications for the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach. (Photo by: Richard Dowdy for IndyCar Media)
Helio Castroneves, driver of the #3 Automobile Club of Southern California Team Penske Chevrolet V-6 IndyCar, celebrates winning the pole Saturday, April 18, 2015 for Sunday`s Verizon IndyCar Series Grand Prix of Long Beach through the streets of Long Beach, California. (Photo by Phillip Abbott/LAT for Chevy Racing)

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Bradenws

May 19, 2012 10:29 AM

This is very cool and interesting, but I just can't wrap my head around a spec series for some reason. I understand the concept (human element triumphing over technical) but I wish I could love Indy as much as something like F1. Can someone explain it to me?



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