Power quickest in opening INDYCAR practice at WWTR, my recap from the hour long session

MADISON, Ill — Will Power went to the top of the speed chart in the closing minutes of Friday afternoon’s NTT INDYCAR Series practice session at the World Wide Technology Raceway. The Team Penske driver circled the 1.25-mile oval with a top lap of 180.539 mph in his No. 12 Dallara-Chevrolet.

Power is one pole shy of tying Mario Andretti for most all-time (67) and has to be among the favorites to land the top starting spot for Saturday’s Bommarito Automotive Group 500 (6 p.m. ET, USA, INDYCAR Radio Network) later on today.

He swept both poles at Iowa last month as well as taking the top starting spot here just one year ago this weekend too which was his 3rd pole in 6 Gateway tries.

Alex Palou (180.208 mph) was second in his No. 10 Dallara-Honda. That was shocking in a sense that Palou said that they didn’t expect to be very good here. The defending series champion qualified 11th, 14th and 21st in his 3 Gateway tries with finishes all being outside the top 10 too. However, he shot up to 2nd quickest late in the session as well.

So did Felix Rosenqvist who went 180.065 mph in his No. 7 Dallara-Chevrolet. Rosenqvist has 3 top 10 starting spots in 4 tries here as well as 10 in his last 13 starts on the year.

Scott McLaughlin (180.047 mph) and Marcus Ericsson (180.042 mph) rounded out the top 5 in the clean hour long session.

Pato O’Ward (180.012 mph) gave us a clean sweep of Penske-AMSP-Ganassi in the top 6. Factor in Josef Newgarden (179.660 mph) in 8th and you get 7 of the top 8 speeds belonging to these camps including all 3 Penske’s and both AMSP entries.

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