It’s over. There is no time for more tests in the mythical oval of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. It has been a tough two weeks, full of tests, tests and hundreds of laps given to a track in which it is essential to gain confidence with its fearsome walls and know how to move in the best way between large groups of cars at 370 km / h. And now, it only remains for the race itself to choose its winner this Sunday (8.30pm). The action began last Wednesday, August 12, and more than a week later, two days before the start of the expected appointment, the 104th edition of the 500 Miles from Indianapolis, we could say that a large part of the die is cast. This Friday, the 33 riders who will be on Sunday’s grid focused on their race pace and fine-tuning their settings for the legendary event, with Alex Palou, who will start seventh in his debut in the Indy500, ending the last practice again in the Top-10.
But this Friday, if one thing counted for little, it was setting a good record at a turn. Palou It was able to achieve it (223,570 miles / hour), but the most important thing was to practice riding in a group and make the last changes to the settings in search of finding the best compromise in the ‘set up’ to be as fast as possible behind other cars , and without traffic. And in this sense, Alex and Fernando Alonso they proved ready. The Asturian did not go for a turn. You do not need it, since your job should be another. His car proved to be ready to be among the best, as his partner made clear O’Ward Duck, author of the best time of the day (225,355 miles / hour) while Fernando he devoted himself to thinking about Sunday.
The Catalan driver was one of those who rode the most in this last practice, taking advantage of his zero experience in this race to ride at the times when the most cars were on the track.
So, Palou was able to begin to understand more concretely what he will find in a race that despite facing as a ‘rookie’ he does so with the sole objective of finishing it by drinking the mythical milk of the champions of the Indy500.
Alonso, last trial by fire
For its part, Fernando Alonso He could not set a good time at a lap, but as we have already indicated, that was not the objective of this day. Spanish ended 23rd with a better slipstream record of 222,680 miles / hour, hidden in terms of fast laps, but exhibiting good race pace in the stints in which he tested simulation runs. For example, from lap 55 to lap 59, he averaged 220 miles / hour in the sum of these turns, repeatedly reaching the 222, making it clear that when he wants to push, he can roll to the beat of the greats.
Of course, the Oviedo was not on the track at a time when more than 20 cars coincided on it, in Indian filia, something that could have been used to practice slipping and overtaking for Sunday. Possibly, the Asturian has it very clear and does not need to train him. And it is that in recent days he has not tired of repeating that he trusts his options to be able to battle for victory despite his 26th starting position, something that nobody has ever achieved in 103 years of history of this race.
“We can go back,” he said Fernando Alonso On Thursday, safe and confident, focusing on the very important last practice session in which he also had to practice pit stops, all the procedures for the race, check that nothing was wrong with his car and also analyze his tire management and fuel consumption to chart Sunday’s strategy.
The time table was the least of it. And we do not say it because Alonso was behind in the times table of this last training session, since for example, the author of the ple, Marco Andretti, he worked exclusively thinking about the race settings and finished in 28th position.