After Sage Karam led the way in rookie orientation, his Chip Ganassi teammate Charlie Kimball claimed the fastest speed of the Verizon IndyCar Series’ 90-minute practice session at Pocono Raceway.
Kimball turned 52 laps and posted a top speed of 221.373 mph around the 2.5-mile track.
Karam posted the second fastest speed of 220.788 mph while recording the most laps of the morning with 83.
“It’s a lot different from driving Indy Lights here, that’s for sure,” Karam told the IMS Radio Network. “It’s going to be who can get the balance right. Our car seemed pretty good. We were a little understear in Turn 3, but other then that, even in traffic in Turn 1 we’re pretty good.”
Practice ended with a caution for Stefano Coletti hiting the wall out of Turn 3, which kept Karam from making a qualifying simulation.
The top five was filled out by Simon Pagenaud (220.629), defending race winner Juan Pablo Montoya (220.316) and Takuma Sato (220.213).
Graham Rahal, who is nine points behind Montoya for the points lead, spent much of the practice session in the low 20s before the team made a spring adjustment. Rahal finished the session 11th fastest at 219.167 mph.
“We were on a good 220 lap, I had to bail out due to understear,” Rahal told IMS Radio. “When we first went out, the balance was great, but I don’t why it couldn’t get out of the 211’s. It was the weirdest thing ever. We had this at Fontana too … we were way at the back.’
Rahal said he wasn’t sure where he’s qualifying pace will be. He and the rest of the field will find out at 2 pm ET on NBCSN.
MARANELLO, Italy — Mick Schumacher, son of the legednary seven-time champion, will have an official Formula One drive during an F1 race weekend for the first time next week at the Nurburgring, Alfa Romeo and Ferrari said Tuesday.
Schumacher gets the practice drive in an Alfa Romeo on Oct. 9 on his home track in Germany as a member of Ferrari’s young driver program, taking over Antonio Giovinazzi’s car for the first session of the weekend.
“I am overjoyed to get this chance in free practice,” Schumacher said in a statement. “I’m going to prepare myself well, so that I can do the best possible job for the team and gain some valuable data for the weekend.”
The 21-year-old Schumacher leads the Formula 2 standings after winning races in Monza and Sochi. He won the European Formula 3 championship in 2018 and tested a Ferrari F1 car in Bahrain in April 2019. He also has done demonstration runs in his father’s old cars, most recently this month ahead of the Tuscan Grand Prix in a championship-winning 2004 Ferrari.
Michael Schumacher holds the F1 record with 91 victories, which Lewis Hamilton is on the verge of tying.
Ferrari said two other drivers in its academy program will also get practice drives in Formula One.
Callum Ilott, a British driver who is second to Mick Schumacher in F2, will drive an F1 Haas at the Nurburgring on the same day as Schumacher. Russian driver Robert Shwartzman will drive in practice for the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix on Dec. 11, though Ferrari hasn’t said for which team.
The German round was added to the F1 schedule after the coronavirus pandemic disrupted the season and will be officially known as the Eifel Grand Prix after a nearby mountain range. The Nurburgring last hosted F1 in 2013.