IndyCar: Power leads Practice 2 at Portland as drivers begin testing the track’s limits

Photo: IndyCar

While Practice 1 for Sunday’s Grand Prix of Portland (2:30 p.m. ET, NBCSN), Practice 2 was a bit more frantic as several drivers had varying degrees of off-course excursions during the session.

However, Team Penske’s Will Power kept things clean and turned the fastest lap of Practice 2 at 57.4053 seconds. Power topped Andretti Autosport’s Marco Andretti by roughly six hundredths of a second, with Andretti’s quick lap standing at 57.4668.

Santino Ferrucci, on his return to the Verizon IndyCar Series this weekend in the No. 39 Cly-Del Honda for Dale Coyne Racing, was an impressive third in Practice 2. Scott Dixon and Jack Harvey rounded out the top five.

Among the drivers who were visibly pushing the limits of the track was championship contender Alexander Rossi, who enters the weekend 26 points behind leader Scott Dixon. Notably, Rossi was particularly aggressive in Turns 10, 11, and 12, even going wide on the exit of Turn 12 on more than one occasion due to brake lockup or understeer.

However, while he always managed to gather it back up and continue on without incident, two other drivers were not quite as lucky.

Both Takuma Sato and Simon Pagenaud nosed into the Turn 12 barrier in separate incidents during Practice 2 – Sato’s came 22 minutes into the session, while Pagenaud’s incident came at the 40-minute mark.

The session was red-flagged for both incidents, though both Sato and Pagenaud only suffered front wing damage and were able to drive back into the pits for repairs – both continued on during practice.

Of note: Rossi was 23rd quickest Practice 2, while Pagenaud and Sato ended up 13th and 21st respectively.

Other notables include Sebastien Bourdais (10th, after leading Practice 1), Carlos Munoz (16th), and Pietro Fittipaldi, (19th, after missing Practice 1 due to a brake issue).

Results are below. Practice 3 begins Saturday at 2:10 p.m. ET, with qualifying set for 6:20 p.m. ET. (**Qualifying will air on NBCSN at 7:30 p.m. ET on Saturday**)



IndyCar releases schedule for 2023 season

IndyCar schedule 2023
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The NTT IndyCar Series’ 2023 schedule will feature the same number of races and tracks as this season with some minor reshuffling of dates.

IndyCar will open the 2023 season March 5 on the streets of St. Petersburg, Florida, and will conclude Sept. 10 at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca in Monterey, California. The 107th Indy 500 will take place May 28 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

The 17-race schedule will conclude with a stretch of eight races in the final nine weeks.

“The NTT IndyCar Series is on an impactful upward trajectory, making progress at a pace that befits our thrilling style of competition,” Penske Entertainment Corp. president and CEO Mark Miles said in a release. “The 2023 season provides an opportunity to further build on this trend, bringing our sport and its stars to more markets and households and reaching new consumers across the globe.”

There will be 15 events on NBC: 13 races (including six of the final seven) plus Indy 500 qualifying May 20-21. There also are three races on USA Network and the Toronto race exclusively on Peacock. All races on NBC and USA also will have live simulstreams on Peacock.

In partnership with NBC Sports, the 2022 IndyCar season was the most-watched in six years and the most-watched across NBC Sports on record. The 2022 season also was the most streamed season on record.

“We’re very excited for our 2023 NTT IndyCar Series schedule and to build on this past season’s viewership milestones,” NBC Sports vice president of programming Mike Perman said in a release. “In providing comprehensive coverage across NBC, Peacock and USA Network, NBC Sports is once again looking forward to telling the stories of these world-class drivers and this compelling series.”

Notable elements on the 2023 schedule:

–There will be the same balance of seven road course races, five street courses and five ovals.

–St. Pete will be the season opener for the 13th time.

–The Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix will move from Belle Isle to the streets of downtown.

–The NASCAR doubleheader weekend at the IMS road course will shift to mid-August.

–The World Wide Technology Raceway event will move from Saturday to Sunday.

Start times for the 2023 events will be announced at a later date.

Here’s the 2023 IndyCar schedule:

Date Race/Track Network/Platform
Sun., March 5 Streets of St. Petersburg NBC, Peacock
Sun., April 2 Texas Motor Speedway NBC, Peacock
Sun., April 16 Streets of Long Beach NBC, Peacock
Sun., April 30 Barber Motorsports Park NBC, Peacock
Sat., May 13 Indianapolis Motor Speedway (Road Course) NBC, Peacock
Sun., May 28 The 107th Indianapolis 500 NBC, Peacock
Sun., June 4 Streets of Detroit NBC, Peacock
Sun., June 18 Road America USA Network, Peacock
Sun., July 2 Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course USA Network, Peacock
Sun., July 16 Streets of Toronto Peacock
Sat., July 22 Iowa Speedway – Race 1 NBC, Peacock
Sun., July 23 Iowa Speedway – Race 2 NBC, Peacock
Sun., Aug. 6 Streets of Nashville NBC, Peacock
Sat., Aug. 12 Indianapolis Motor Speedway (Road Course) USA Network, Peacock
Sun., Aug. 27 World Wide Technology Raceway NBC, Peacock
Sun., Sept. 3 Portland International Raceway NBC, Peacock
Sun., Sept. 10 WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca NBC, Peacock

*dates and networks/platforms are subject to change