Race Weekend Central

Colton Herta Paces Fast Friday at Indianapolis, Nolan Siegel Flips on Backstraight

SPEEDWAY, Ind. — With the turbocharger boost increased to qualifying levels, Colton Herta was the quickest car on Fast Friday at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway ahead of the 108th Indianapolis 500.

The No. 26 Andretti Global Honda set a fastest lap of 234.974 mph. That lap was tow-assisted. On the non-tow speed chart, Herta was 10th fastest at 233.084 mph.

IndyCar defines a lap to be assisted by a car disturbing the air in front of them with a tow if a lap is completed within 10 seconds of another car on track.

“Seemed to be lacking a little bit of speed I think on our own,” Herta said. “Obviously the fast lap was a tow lap. Nice to be quickest, but doesn’t really mean much for qualifying. I think we have a little bit of speed to find, unfortunately, but I think there’s a chance if we do everything right, we should be able to make the Fast 12.”

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NASCAR Cup Series racer Kyle Larson was second fastest in his No. 17 Arrow McLaren/Hendrick Chevrolet with a tow-assisted lap of 234.271 mph. Larson was 15th fastest on the non-tow chart at 232.695 mph.

“Today went a lot smoother,” Larson said. “Just more so as planned. Where yesterday did not. I thought with the weather being — the forecast being good, I would get lots of laps, but did not. Was pretty frustrated with things yesterday.

“Yeah, it all went smooth and was good to just get some reps with the boost and feeling all that. Yeah, happy with how it all went.”

Larson’s car needed to have the engine changed, which kept the 2021 NASCAR Cup Series champion in Gasoline Alley for much of the day.

Josef Newgarden was third fastest on the speed chart at 234.260 mph and that lap was the fastest lap on the non-tow speed chart. Newgarden is the defending Indianapolis 500 winner.

“It’s always interesting to see how this shapes up,” Newgarden said. “Friday is one deal, and then tomorrow is going to be where it really comes together and you’re going to see where the field truly stacks up. But I think today is a good indicator, and we feel like we’re in a decent spot. We’re definitely in the mix, which is great to see. We’ve been working the last four years to try and get back into the mix in qualifying.

“Really proud of the team. I think they’ve built fast cars. That’s what happens when you’re quick in qualifying here. It’s about a team effort and building fast cars. It doesn’t matter how good you are. You can’t will the car faster through ability. It is a team effort at Indianapolis.”

Nolan Siegel had the only accident of the day as the No. 18 Dale Coyne Racing Honda spun exiting turn 2. The car hit the outside retaining wall and turned upside down, landing on the roll hoop and the left sidepod about halfway down the back straight. Siegel was seen and released from the medical center.

“I had one snap of oversteer in the middle that I caught and then turned back in and spun and I’m not exactly sure why,” Siegel said. “Disappointed, feel bad for the team that’s been working so hard for so long for this and just kind of threw it away. So not at all happy about that one but we’ll move forward and see if we can get back out and qualify for the race tomorrow.”

After qualifying ended, each Indianapolis 500 entry drew their position in the qualifying order. Entrants were called up one-by-one in the order of their position on the Fast Friday speed chart.

Kyle Kirkwood was the eighth driver to draw a spot in the qualifying order and he drew the first coin, so he will be the first driver to qualify on Saturday.

The qualifying order for the 108th Indianapolis 500:

Qualifying OrderNumberDriverTeam
1.27Kyle KirkwoodAndretti Global
2.3Scott McLaughlinTeam Penske
3. 4Kyffin SimpsonChip Ganassi Racing
4.21Rinus VeeKayEd Carpenter Racing
5.77Romain GrosjeanJuncos Hollinger Racing
6.17Kyle LarsonArrow McLaren/Rick Hendrick
7.78Agustin CanapinoJuncos Hollinger Racing
8.6Callum IlottArrow McLaren
9.12Will PowerTeam Penske
10. 2Josef NewgardenTeam Penske
11. 11Marcus ArmstrongChip Ganssi Racing
12. 18Nolan SiegelDale Coyne Racing
13. 14Santino FerrucciA.J. Foyt Enterprises
14.45Christian LundgaardRahal Letterman Lanigan Racing
15.28Marcus EricssonAndretti Global
16.8Linus LundqvistChip Ganassi Racing
17. 98Marco AndrettiAndretti Herta w/ Marco & Curb-Agajanian
18.20Ed CarpenterEd Carpenter Racing
19. 51Katherine LeggeDale Coyne Racing w/ RWR
20.24Conor DalyDRR-Cusick Motorsports
21.30Pietro FittipaldiRahal Letterman Lanigan Racing
22. 66Tom BlomqvistMeyer Shank Racing
23.5Pato O’WardArrow McLaren Racing
24. 60Felix RosenqvistMeyer Shank Racing
25. 10Alex PalouChip Ganassi Racing
26. 75Takuma SatoRahal Letterman Lanigan Racing
27. 9Scott DixonChip Ganassi Racing
28. 41Sting Ray Robb A.J. Foyt Enterprises
29. 26Colton HertaAndretti Global w/ Curb-Agajanian
30. 23Ryan Hunter-ReayDRR-Cusick Motorsports
31. 33Christian Rasmussen Ed Carpenter Racing
32. 15Graham RahalRahal Letterman Lanigan Racing
33.06Helio CastronevesMeyer Shank Racingw/ Curb-Agajanian
34.7Alexander RossiArrow McLaren

Following a practice session from 8:30-9:30 a.m. ET, qualifying will begin at 11 a.m. and will go until 5:50 p.m. with the broadcast ending 10 minutes later.

All on-track sessions will air live on Peacock.

About the author

Christopherdeharde

Christopher DeHarde has covered IndyCar racing and the Road to Indy for various outlets since 2014. In addition to open wheel racing, DeHarde has also covered IMSA and various short track racing events around Indiana. Originally from New Orleans, DeHarde moved to the Indianapolis area in 2017 to further pursue a career as a motorsports writer.

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