Practice One is in the Books

To say Practice One went of without hitch is technically correct, but I saw a few drivers sliding through the turns as I watched from both ends of the track from the infield. But no drivers made contact with the wall or each other, so it was technically a success.

2018 winner Will Power led the practice with an average speed of 180.539 mph. Alex Palou was just a tick slower at 180.208 mph. Felix Rosenqvist was third quick, followed by Scott McLaughlin and Marcus Ericsson. Three teams in the Top-Five is not bad if you’re looking for parity. Pato O’Ward, Graham Rahal, Josef Newgarden, Takuma Sato and Scott Dixon rounded out the Top-Ten. Here is a shot I got of Ericsson, just after stepping out of the car. Forgive my mediocre photos. My photographer (Mrs. Oilpressure) is not here this weekend and is missed for many reasons.


My out-on-a-limb pick, David Malukas, was thirteenth quick, after spending most of the session in the Top-Ten.


There are twenty-six cars in this race. I normally hang out in the north end of the pits during the race, because the pit stalls down there are empty and the view is unobstructed. That’s not the case this year with a full field. Quite honestly, if the No.11 car was still running for Foyt, I’m not sure where it would go – although I’m sure they would squeeze it in somehow.

There are a few new liveries this weekend. Marcus Ericsson is in a red and black Bryant Heating & Cooling car, that is different than the car he ran last year in Nashville. It’s a good thing, because that would have been difficult to tell it apart from this year’s Verizon car of Will Power.

Graham Rahal is in a striking dark green/day-glo green car this weekend, that really looks good in person. Unfortunately, day-glo never shows up in print or television as it looks in person.


Romain Grosjean is in a second NAPA car, that is trimmed in blue and white – looking much better than the blue and pink NAPA car driven by teammate Alexander Rossi.



As predicted, the weather is absolutely perfect today. It’s clear and warm, but not near as oppressive as it can be here in August. Tomorrow may be different as there is a chance of rain in the mid-afternoon how that affects tomorrow evening’s race is anyone’s guess.


That’ll do it for now. Qualifying will begin at 3:15, shown live on Peacock. I will be here sometime later with a qualifying wrap-up. Please check back later.

George Phillips

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