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Newgarden tops Gateway night practice

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MADISON, Ill. – The Team Penske domination of today’s sessions for the Bommarito Automotive Group 500 presented by Valvoline continued with Josef Newgarden pacing the final one-hour practice on Friday night.

The driver of the No. 2 PPG Automotive Refinish Team Penske Chevrolet lapped the 1.25-mile Gateway Motorsports Park at 24.446 seconds, 184.079 mph.

Unlike the other two sessions, this one wasn’t a Team Penske 1-4 sweep, but close. Will Power, the polesitter, was third with Helio Castroneves fourth. Simon Pagenaud was 13th.

Ed Carpenter, in the No. 20 Fuzzy’s Vodka Chevrolet, is best on the grid among those not driving for Team Penske in fifth and was second in this session.

Top Honda was Alexander Rossi in fifth place.

There was a lot of passing this session, more than normal, which bodes well for Saturday’s race – which needs to be an important showcase for the series upon its return to the greater St. Louis metro area oval for the first time in 14 years, since 2003.

Live coverage for this race begins at 9 p.m. ET on NBCSN; a re-air of tonight’s qualifying session, which aired live on the NBC Sports App, will occur at 7:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN.

Times for this session, interrupted only by two minor yellow flags (debris and a track inspection), are below.

Michael Schumacher’s son to make F1 practice debut at Nurburgring

F1 Mick Schumacher
Joe Portlock - Formula 1/Formula 1 via Getty Images
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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.