Laguna Seca IndyCar: Colton Herta leads Felix Rosenqvist in practice

Colton Herta led fellow IndyCar rookies Felix Rosenqvist and Santino Ferrucci in opening practice for the Laguna Seca finale, despite all three going off and Herta causing a red flag.

Herta’s 1m10.734s lap in his Harding Steinbrenner Racing Dallara-Honda pipped Rookie of the Year points leader Rosenqvist of Chip Ganassi Racing by just 0.0719 seconds.

But in the dying seconds of the session Herta looped into the runoff on the outside of the initial left-hand part of the Corkscrew, and no amount of wheelspinning could recover the situation without outside assistance.

That red was the second of the session, as Tony Kanaan had earlier binned his AJ Foyt Racing Dallara-Chevrolet at the final corner.

Rosenqvist had a long run through the sand on the outside of the Turn 4 right-hander and a wild moment through the Corkscrew before scoring his best time on his final lap, while Dale Coyne Racing driver Ferrucci also had some wild moments before setting a time just 0.15s off Herta’s best.

Team Penske’s Will Power was fastest of the series veterans and fastest of the Chevrolet runners, albeit 0.27s off the ultimate pace, in fourth.

Zach Veach was fifth and fastest of the Andretti Autosport cars, while Simon Pagenaud was first of the championship contenders in sixth.

The other title contenders – points leader Josef Newgarden, Alexander Rossi and Scott Dixon – were ninth, 24th and 14th respectively.

Rossi was on a hot lap when Kanaan brought out the red flag, and he then asked for a significant set-up change that required him to step out of the car for 20 minutes.

When Rossi resumed, there were just three minutes to go, at which point Herta’s spin prevented him setting a representative time.

Practice one times

Pos Driver Team Car Time Gap Laps
1 Colton Herta Harding Racing Dallara/Honda 1m10.7335s 13
2 Felix Rosenqvist Chip Ganassi Racing Dallara/Honda 1m10.8054s 0.0719s 18
3 Santino Ferrucci Dale Coyne Racing Dallara/Honda 1m10.8837s 0.1502s 16
4 Will Power Team Penske Dallara/Chevrolet 1m11.0024s 0.2689s 12
5 Zach Veach Andretti Autosport Dallara/Honda 1m11.0816s 0.3481s 13
6 Simon Pagenaud Team Penske Dallara/Chevrolet 1m11.1519s 0.4184s 12
7 Sebastien Bourdais Dale Coyne Racing Dallara/Honda 1m11.1581s 0.4246s 10
8 Spencer Pigot Ed Carpenter Racing Dallara/Chevrolet 1m11.2382s 0.5047s 9
9 Josef Newgarden Team Penske Dallara/Chevrolet 1m11.2460s 0.5125s 9
10 Matheus Leist AJ Foyt Enterprises Dallara/Chevrolet 1m11.2702s 0.5367s 11
11 Marco Andretti Andretti Herta Dallara/Honda 1m11.2827s 0.5492s 8
12 Marcus Ericsson Schmidt Peterson Motorsports Dallara/Honda 1m11.3015s 0.5680s 13
13 Max Chilton Carlin Dallara/Chevrolet 1m11.4110s 0.6775s 13
14 Scott Dixon Chip Ganassi Racing Dallara/Honda 1m11.4451s 0.7116s 8
15 Ryan Hunter-Reay Andretti Autosport Dallara/Honda 1m11.4532s 0.7197s 8
16 Charlie Kimball Carlin Dallara/Chevrolet 1m11.5472s 0.8137s 10
17 Tony Kanaan AJ Foyt Enterprises Dallara/Chevrolet 1m11.6237s 0.8902s 5
18 Takuma Sato Rahal Letterman Lanigan Dallara/Honda 1m11.6773s 0.9438s 12
19 Jack Harvey Meyer Shank Racing Dallara/Honda 1m11.7449s 1.0114s 10
20 Conor Daly Andretti Autosport Dallara/Honda 1m11.9320s 1.1985s 10
21 Graham Rahal Rahal Letterman Lanigan Dallara/Honda 1m12.0043s 1.2708s 9
22 James Hinchcliffe Schmidt Peterson Motorsports Dallara/Honda 1m12.0125s 1.2790s 10
23 Ed Jones Ed Carpenter Racing Dallara/Chevrolet 1m12.1601s 1.4266s 13
24 Alexander Rossi Andretti Autosport Dallara/Honda 1m12.9932s 2.2597s 4

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