Hunter McElrea

Andretti Autosport rebounded from a sluggish opening session Friday by capturing the top two spots in practice Saturday morning for the INDY NXT by Firestone Grand Prix at Road America.

Hunter McElrea led with a best lap of 1 minute, 48.8556 seconds in the No. 27 Smart Motors car fielded by Andretti Autosport, followed by teammate Louis Foster at 1:49.0220 in the No. 26 Copart/USF Pro Championship machine. McElrea was the quickest of the four Andretti drivers Friday, seventh at 1:51.4118.

SEE:Practice Results

The Andretti teammates led 18 of the 19 drivers quicker this morning than the track record of 1:52.0034 set by Colton Herta in 2017. The entire 14-turn, 4.014-mile circuit was repaved last fall, hiking speeds dramatically.

“It was cool,” McElrea said. “It’s fast, man. The track’s really fun. It’s really different to what it was. Honestly, just adapting a lot. I still think there’s more in it.”

The track record should be shattered – officially – during qualifying at 1:15 p.m. ET today (INDYCAR LIVE, INDYCAR Radio Network).

Danial Frost was third in practice at 1:49.0523 in the No. 68 HMD Motorsports with DCR car, followed by rookie Matteo Nannini at 1:49.1184 in the No. 75 Juncos Hollinger Racing machine. The 45-minute session ended three minutes early when Nannini went off course in Turn 14 and nosed into the barriers. He was unhurt.

Rookie Nolan Siegel, just two points out of the championship lead, rounded out the top five at 1:49.1310 in the No. 39 HMD Motorsports with DCR car. Like McElrea, Siegel used this session to recover from a rough opening practice, after which he was 18th on the speed chart.

Friday practice leader Kyffin Simpson dropped to 13th today at 1:49.7879 in the No. 21 HMD Motorsports with CGR car.

The 20-lap race is scheduled for 11:10 a.m. ET Sunday (Peacock, INDYCAR Radio Network).