By Joey Barnes, Editor-in-Chief
Scott Dixon went to the top of the charts during the final hour of practice on Thursday as preparations continued for the 104th Running of the Indianapolis 500.
The five-time NTT IndyCar Series champion turned 107 total laps around the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, wheeling his No. 9 Chip Ganassi Racing Honda to an overall best lap of 226.102 mph. Takuma Sato, who held the top spot for the majority of the day, ended up second overall at 225.693 mph in the No. 30 Rahal Letterman Lanigan Honda.
Marco Andretti backed up yesterday’s runner-up pace on opening day with a third-place effort today, pacing around the 2.5-mile superspeedway at 225.249 mph and giving Honda a sweep of the top three spots. The first Chevrolet on the leaderboard was Conor Daly in fourth (225.106 mph), followed by the No. 55 Dale Coyne Racing with Team Goh Honda piloted by rookie Alex Palou (224.971 mph) in fifth.
Colton Herta, Charlie Kimball, Fernando Alonso, James Davison and rookie Oliver Askew completed the rest of the top 10.
The session saw the first on-track incident of week after Alonso, a two-time Formula 1 champion, clipped the inside curbing on the entry of Turn 4, which caused his No. 66 Arrow McLaren SP Chevrolet to wiggle up the track and make heavy contact with the outside wall. From there, momentum carried him back across the track and the car whipped around as he slid backwards down pit road. He logged 126 laps on the day.
— Indianapolis Motor Speedway (@IMS) August 13, 2020
Both Felix Rosenqvist and rookie Dalton Kellett completed 141 laps, most among all drivers on the day.
For the second consecutive day, DragonSpeed Racing’s Ben Hanley is the only driver among the field of 33 that has yet to complete a single timed lap. He was set to run on his own following the conclusion of practice to complete his refresher in order to participate in the remaining practice and qualifying sessions.
Next up is ‘Fast Friday’ (11 a.m. – 5:30 p.m. ET on NBC Sports Gold) as teams are prepared to receive an extra boost of 80 horsepower, which will feature speeds above 230 mph for qualifying on Saturday and Sunday.