Torrential rain washes out FP2 at Austin

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AUSTIN, Texas – It’s never a good story when you, as a reporter, have completed as many laps in a session as the entire field of 20 drivers and cars competing in the United States Grand Prix at Circuit of The Americas in Austin.

Yet that’s the situation I, and anyone else in the media centre here, finds themselves in following torrential rain that has washed out second free practice today.

The session was canceled just before 3 p.m. CT and local time.

At 1:45 p.m. local time, the FIA indicated the “Risk of rain for this session is 100%.”

Just six minutes later, at 1:51 p.m., this graphic flashed: “Start of P2 will be delayed indefinately. Marshals unable to work due to the proximity of lightning.”

The rain wasn’t too bad just before the start of the session but within five minutes, it turned to absolute buckets of rain coming down on the circuit.

At 2:56 p.m. CT and local time, this graphic confirmed the session was canceled:

“P2 is cancelled. No medical helicopter operations for the next 2 hours.”

Ever competitive though, teams kept posting on Twitter. Here’s some of the highlights from the non-session:

Heck, we even entered the party for a bit.

Report: Spencer Pigot out at Ed Carpenter Racing

Joe Skibinski / IndyCar
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Spencer Pigot will not return to Ed Carpenter Racing in 2020, according to a story Thursday by RACER.com.

The 26-year-old Floridian, who won the 2015 Indy Lights championship, is expected to be replaced in the No. 21 Chevrolet by 2019 Indy Lights runner-up Rinus VeeKay.

“I’m appreciative of the opportunity ECR gave me,” Pigot told RACER.com. “I understand the reasons they had to go in a different direction, and wish them all the best.”

In 56 NTT IndyCar Series starts, Pigot has 15 top 10 finishes, with a best finish of second at Iowa in 2018. He finished 14th in the 2019 point standings.

VeeKay, who tested in an Indy car twice for ECR in 2019, has six wins in 18 Indy Lights starts, including a weekend sweep of the final two rounds of the season at Laguna Seca in September.

A representative from ECR told NBC Sports Thursday that the team currently could not comment on any driver rumors as the team currently does not have any drivers under contract for the 2020 season, although it is presumed that owner/driver Carpenter will return to the No. 20 entry for the oval rounds.

NBC Sports will provide updates on the story once more information becomes available.