LONG POND, Pennsylvania – The busiest session of the day at Pocono Raceway wound up the cleanest as Verizon IndyCar Series drivers and teams had their last chance late this afternoon to prepare their cars for Sunday’s ABC Supply 500.
Defending race winner Will Power was fastest in the final practice, with a lap of 216.294 mph in the No. 12 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet. Team Penske dominated the 35-minute session, taking four of the top six positions on the speed chart.
ABC SUPPLY 500: Final practice results; Combined practice results
Simon Pagenaud was second at 216.181 mph in the No. 1 DXC Technology Team Penske Chevrolet, Helio Castroneves fifth in the No. 3 Hitachi Team Penske Chevy (215.982) and championship leader Josef Newgarden sixth on the No. 2 Fitzgerald Glider Kits Team Penske Chevy (215.647).
“I’ve been super happy with the DXC Chevy this weekend, it’s been good,” said Pagenaud, the 2016 Verizon IndyCar Series champion, who will start Sunday’s race on the 2.5-mile triangle oval from the second position. “It’s all down to details and finding exactly what you need for those 500 miles. It’s quite tricky, lots of thinking in the process, but I think we have a really good baseline. It’s all going to be about how much we adjust the car during the race, but I feel pretty confident.
“The whole Team Penske is really strong, so we’ll see. It’s a long race.”
After a morning practice that saw two drivers hit the wall, along with two others crashing in qualifying earlier this afternoon, getting through the early evening practice without issue was the best medicine. Twenty-one of the 22 entered cars participated in the session, with only Ryan Hunter-Reay sitting out as he remained under observation at Lehigh Valley Hospital-Cedar Crest following his crash in the No. 28 DHL Honda during a qualifications attempt.
Chip Ganassi Racing teammates Max Chilton and Tony Kanaan were third and fourth, respectively, in the final practice. Chilton logged a lap of 216.126 mph on the No. 8 Gallagher Honda while Kanaan was clocked at 216.095 mph in the No. 10 NTT Data Honda.
Pole sitter Takuma Sato, in the No. 26 Andretti Autosport Honda, was 11th in the session at 214.966 mph.
Live coverage of the 200-lap race begins at 2 p.m. ET Sunday on NBCSN and the Advance Auto Parts INDYCAR Radio Network. The green flag is expected to wave at 2:40 p.m.