Saturday, July 20, 2019

Pagenaud Leads Competitive Second Toronto Practice


The first sub-one minute laps of this year’s visit north of the border for the NTT IndyCar Series came in Friday’s second and final practice session which ended with Simon Pagenaud on top.

Of the reigning Indianapolis 500 winner’s 19 laps of the temporary street circuit around Toronto’s Exhibition Place during the afternoon session, a 59.8708 lap on red-sidewalled Firestone alternate tires promoted Pagenaud and his No. 22 DXC Technology Chevrolet to the forefront of the field.

Felix Rosenqvist and Sebastien Bourdais also went quicker than one minute on their best laps, coming within 0.0603 and 0.1158 seconds off Pagenaud’s lap, respectively.

Spencer Pigot and Rosenqvist’s Chip Ganassi Racing teammate Scott Dixon rounded out the top five. With Graham Rahal in sixth being 0.5383 seconds slower than Pagenaud, Dixon was the final driver within half a second of the session’s quickest lap.

Honda’s 6-4 advantage in the top 10 in the morning session was matched in the afternoon as Marco Andretti, Josef Newgarden, Ryan Hunter-Reay and Will Power set the seventh- through 10th-quickest laps.

Hometown hero James Hinchcliffe was 11th, 0.7398 seconds slower than Pagenaud.

Sage Karam improved 2.3328 seconds between Friday’s two sessions and placed 21st out of 22 in Practice 2. With multiple incidents, Hinchcliffe’s Arrow Schmidt Peterson Motorsports teammate Marcus Ericsson was last.

Turn 11 proved to be a trouble spot again, particularly for Takuma Sato who contacted the outside retaining wall at the corner’s exit for his second time of the day. Ericsson also damaged his Honda while Alexander Rossi hit the inside wall a few corners earlier in the challenging final sequence of turns. Rossi had the 14th-fastest lap.

With practice day complete, focus turns to a third practice Saturday morning before qualifying sets the grid at 2 p.m. EDT.

Aaron Durant
Aaron Durant
Aaron brings a developing design and editorial vision to The Apex every day and co-hosts The Braking Point podcast every week. As editor-in-chief and an avid reader, Aaron enjoys aligning his relentless care for quality with an interest in counterintuitive approaches.


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