Promising Power As McLaughlin Battles Indy

Promising Power As McLaughlin Battles Indy

The opening day of practice for the 2021 running of the Indianapolis 500 could not have gone better for Will Power, although his Team Penske sidekick Scott McLaughlin was back in the pack after car troubles.

Power ran the quickest lap of the day at 226.470 miles-per-hour in the non-metric USA, or 364.4681km/h, while McLaughlin was only 25th but still clocked 222.836.

For comparison, Power’s lap took 39.7403 seconds and McLaughlin still managed 40.3885.

The other Aussie-ish driver in the field, former Supercars racer Simona Silvestro, was 13th at 224.230 with a lap in 40.1373 as she makes a one-off IndyCar start in the biggest race of the year.

“It’s promising. Felt more comfortable than I have for a while. So far it feels really good,” Power reported at the end of the day, after clocking 87 laps to also lead the field on that statistic.

McLaughlin was less confident after losing track time.

“We’ve definitely had smoother days in the past, but if that was a bad day it wasn’t too bad,” he said.

“We had a couple of little issues throughout the day, but nothing too bad. We lost a bit of track time.”

Still, he was happy with his pace.

“The car … was pretty fast,” McLaughlin said.

“Everyone is getting tows and you don’t really know where you’re at. It’s hard to tell out there.

“So we’ll re-group tonight and have a bit think about it, get the car a little bit better, and see what we bring tomorrow.”

While McLaughlin was focussed on practice, Power is already looking forward to the 500 

“I think adding that downforce is certainly going to help the racing. I think you’re going to have one of the old-style races where the front three are just swapping positions constantly because you can follow so close now. I think it will be good. It’s good for the fans,” he said.

“Last year was evident if you didn’t start at the front you didn’t have a chance. It might be a little bit better this year.