Pagenaud barrels through Turn 1 at IMS
Simon Pagenaud's 225.787 mph tow-assisted lap was the fastest turned in opening practice for the 2018 Indianapolis 500. | Photo: Chris Owens / INDYCAR

With just 71 minutes of green-flag running and only 23 cars with complete laps, Team Penske driver Simon Pagenaud was fastest overall in the opening practice session for the 102nd Running of the Indianapolis 500.

Green flag waves to start Indy 500 practice
The green flag waved at 11 a.m. EDT to begin practice for the 2018 Indy 500. | Photo: Ben Hinc / The Apex

The two-hour morning session for veterans got underway at 11 a.m. EDT. Practice was paused three times for track inspections and once for light moisture reported on track. Twenty-two minutes of green-flag time were lost because of weather concerns.

Pagenaud’s best revolution of the 2.5-mile oval in his No. 22 Chevrolet came on his eighth of 30 total laps. The 225.787 mph speed was a full 2 mph faster than teammate Helio Castroneves, who turned a 223.445 mph lap in his No. 3 Pennzoil car.

Josef Newgarden made it a top-three lockout for Penske with a 223.214 mph lap, just ahead of Andretti Autosport’s Marco Andretti. Andretti’s 223.124 mph speed gave him the honor of being the fastest Honda-backed driver and relegated Ed Carpenter to fifth on the speed chart at 222.839 mph.

Will Power, Scott Dixon, Carlos Munoz, Zach Veach and JR Hildebrand completed the top 10, with Chevrolet holding a 6-4 advantage over rival Honda.

Tuesday’s activity continues at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway with Rookie Orientation Program completion and veteran refreshers from 1 to 3 p.m. EDT, along with a full-field practice that is scheduled to conclude the day from 3 to 6 p.m.


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