Marco Andretti tops Indy speed chart in practice
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Marco Andretti posted the fastest Indianapolis 500 practice speed of the month Monday, turning a fast lap of 225.100 mph on the 2.5-mile oval.
It was the second straight day an Andretti Autosport driver held the top spot. Colombia’s Carlos Munoz, a rookie, was the fastest driver Sunday.
Warmer temperatures and brighter skies created much better conditions from the first two days of practice at Indy, and it showed. Andretti and three-time Indy winner Helio Castroneves each topped 225 mph. The Brazilian posted a lap of 225.075 mph as he tries to become the fourth driver to win four times at Indy.
Defending series champion Ryan Hunter-Reay was third at 224.386. Australia’s Will Power was fourth at 223.784 and Panther Racing’s J.R. Hildebrand was fifth at 223.624.
Rookie Conor Daly made it onto the track for the first time after racing in Spain twice over the weekend. He passed all three phases of his rookie orientation and made it onto the track for regular practice later in the afternoon. His best official lap was 219.044.
Five rookie drivers have passed the test: the four who have rides and Kyle Busch, who tested at Indy with Michael Andretti’s team last week.
Pippa Mann also made it onto the track for the first time this month. The British driver is trying to make her first IndyCar start since she was injured in the season-ending crash that killed Dan Wheldon in 2011. Mann turned 35 laps Monday, her fastest being 220.500.