Andretti Autosport put the recent knowledge gained at a Barber Motorsports Park test to good use during the NTT IndyCar Series’ lone session on Friday at the Alabama road course.
Andretti’s Colton Herta (1m6.5149s) led in the No. 26 Honda and had teammates Alexander Rossi and Romain Grosjean close behind in third and fourth, with 2021 Barber race winner Alex Palou even closer in second with his No. 10 Chip Ganassi Racing Honda (+0.0508s).
“Really happy with how the car was,” Herta said. “Obviously, we were one of the lucky ones that got to test here so we did a lot of stuff on that day to help us prepare for this weekend. It showed. We came here, rolled off the truck, the car was really nice right away.”
A late riser in the caution-free 45-minute session, Team Penske’s Scott McLaughlin was fifth and CGR’s Scott Dixon closed out the top six (+0.4102s).
Among the surprises, Juncos Hollinger Racing’s Callum Ilott was fast once again on a Friday, putting the same knowledge gained at the test Andretti attended to place the No. 77 Chevy eighth among the 26 drivers (+0.5712s). Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing’s Jack Harvey also opened the weekend on a positive note with a run to 11th in the No. 45 Honda (+0.6692s).
In the opposite direction, the rest of the Team Penske squad were surprisingly absent with Will Power in 16th and championship leader Josef Newgarden in 18th.
UP NEXT: Free Practice 2, Saturday, 10 a.m. ET