NTT IndyCar Series points leader Josef Newgarden rose to the fore and set the fastest lap of practice for the 103rd running of the Indianapolis 500 presented by Gainbridge.

The Team Penske driver rocketed around the iconic 2.5-mile oval with the aid of a tow in 39.3260 seconds (228.856 mph).

The 2017 IndyCar champion’s lap pipped 2008 Indy 500 winner Scott Dixon by .003s. Dixon compensated for that by logging the quickest lap without a  tow speed at 223.148 mph.

Spencer Pigot led the Ed Carpenter Racing brigade with a time of 39.3601s (229.658s).

Three-time Indy winner Helio Castroneves found himself sandwiched in fifth between the Dale Coyne Racing entries of rookie Santino Ferrucci in fourth and Sebastien Bourdais in sixth. Ferrucci, who is making his first oval start at Indianapolis, used the draft to clock the fourth fastest lap of the day at 39.3768s (228.561 mph).

Castroneves's time of 39.3975 (228.441 mph) put the Team Penske driver in the top-five for the second straight day while Bourdais was sixth at 39.4268s (228.271 mph).

IndyCar sophomore Zach Veach was the quickest Andretti Autosport entry in seventh and was the final driver in the 228 mph range with a lap time of 39.4638s.

Carlin Racing part-timer Charlie Kimball led a trio of Chevrolets rounding out the top ten as the Ed Carpenter Racing entries of Ed Jones and Ed Carpenter ended up ninth and tenth.

Patricio O’Ward completed his rookie orientation this morning without a hitch and ended the day with the 23rd quickest time overall.

Fernando Alonso had the first incident of the month when he crashed his No. 66 McLaren Racing entry in Turns 3 and 4 of the 2.5-mile oval. The Spaniard walked away unhurt, but his McLaren team brought out the team’s backup car for use the rest of the week.

Chip Ganassi Racing rookie Felix Rosenqvist also had a massive shunt with less than an hour remaining. The Swede spun coming out of the 90-degree corner and hit the outside wall before clobbering the inside tire barrier.

Rosenqvist was uninjured in the incident and is cleared to resume practice tomorrow.

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