Herta Heads into Race on Top of Warm-up Charts


By the Numbers: Warm-up Results 

NTT P1 Award winner Colton Herta stayed out front during the morning warm-up for the Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg on Sunday, leading the final practice with a best lap of 1 minute, .6632 of a second in the No. 26 Gainbridge Honda.

Herta’s race setup was only three-tenths of a second slower than his pole-winning lap of 1:00.3210 Saturday afternoon.

Cloudy conditions cooled the 14-turn, 1.8-mile temporary street circuit this morning, but drivers will need to cope with an increase in steamy humidity during the 100-lap race today. Coverage starts at noon (ET) on NBC and the INDYCAR Radio Network.

Reigning Indianapolis 500 presented by Gainbridge winner Takuma Sato could be a driver to watch for a charge through the 24-car field later today. He ended up second in the warm-up at 1:00.6768 in the No. 30 Panasonic/Shield Cleansers Honda. Sato is starting 15th in the race.

Six-time NTT INDYCAR SERIES champion Scott Dixon was third-quickest at 1:00.8092 in the No. 9 PNC Bank Chip Ganassi Racing Honda, followed by rookie Scott McLaughlin at 1:00.8720 in the No. 3 DEX Imaging Team Penske Chevrolet.

Rinus VeeKay rounded out the top five at 1:00.9414 in the No. 21 SONAX/Autogeek Chevrolet.

The ultra-competitive nature of the series showed yet again this weekend on the time sheets. Less than a second separated the top 17 drivers during the warm-up.

Pato O’Ward triggered the only incident of the 30-minute session when he overshot Turn 4 in his No. 5 Arrow McLaren SP Chevrolet and stalled his car trying to return to the circuit.

The Dale Coyne Racing with RWR team may have a bit of extra work to do in the three hours between the end of the warm-up and the start of the race, as replays on Peacock Premium showed smoke trailing from the rear of the No. 51 Nurtec ODT Honda driven by rookie Romain Grosjean.

From the fans