NEWTON, Iowa – Josef Newgarden felt like had the car to beat Friday night but finished fifth in the Iowa INDYCAR 250s Race 1 after getting caught out by a mid-race caution.
He’ll be among the cars to beat for tonight’s Race 2, as well.
CLICK IT: Practice Results | Combined Results | Race 2 Starting Lineup
Newgarden’s No. 1 Hitachi Team Penske Chevrolet led the final one-hour practice before the green flag falls on Race 2 (8:30 p.m. ET tonight, NBCSN). Newgarden, who will start the race from the pole position, toured the 7/8-mile oval at 170.199 mph.
The top two finishers in Race 1 were just behind Newgarden as Race 1 winner Simon Pagenaud was second fastest in the No. 22 Menards Team Penske Chevrolet at 168.515 and NTT INDYCAR SERIES points leader Scott Dixon was the fastest Honda at 168.156 in the No. 9 PNC Bank Chip Ganassi Racing Honda.
Both, though, dealt with drama in the session.
Pagenaud missed the first 15 minutes of the session as his team addressed some small technical issues, while Dixon brushed the Turn 2 wall with the right rear of his car.
Colton Herta, Rinus VeeKay and Will Power also returned to the track after their cars were damaged in separate incidents in Race 1’s only caution period.
The teams of Power and Herta repaired their cars overnight, while VeeKay’s Ed Carpenter Racing team opted to switch to a backup car. All three will start Race 2 from their original starting positions.