Team Chevy closed Fast Friday practice at Indianapolis Motor Speedway with seven drivers and teams in the top-10 of best one-lap speeds, with Kyle Larson, driver of the No. 17 Arrow McLaren Chevrolet leading the Bowtie brand at 234.271 mph.
Chevrolet additionally captured the top-five four-lap average results, in addition to eight of the top-10, with Josef Newgarden, driver of the No. 2 Shell Team Penske Chevrolet leading at 234.063 mph.
Larson continued to impress while going the fastest he’s ever had in a racecar, logging 34 laps for the day and clocking the fastest Turn 2 exit trap speed at 231.178 mph.
At the checkered flag on Fast Friday, Chevrolet completed 456 laps of the 990 overall on the day, with 2,409 total laps of 5,189 during the first week of preparation for the 108th Running of the Indianapolis 500.
Armed Forces Qualifying weekend at Indianapolis Motor Speedway kicks off Saturday with practice at 8:30 a.m. ET, followed by qualifying at 11 a.m. ET. Saturday’s events will stream live on Peacock.


Pos. Driver

1st Josef Newgarden (234.063 mph)

2nd Scott McLaughlin (233.623 mph)

3rd Will Power (233.451 mph)

4th Alexander Ross (233.355 mph)

5th Pato O’Ward (233.043 mph)

8th Agustin Canapino (232.875 mph)

9th Santino Ferrucci (232.867 mph)

10th Kyle Larson (232.549 mph)


Pos. Driver

2nd Kyle Larson (234.271 mph)

3rd Josef Newgarden (234.250 mph)

4th Scott McLaughlin (234.102 mph)

5th Alexander Rossi (234.006 mph)

6th Will Power (233.864 mph)

7th Pato O’Ward (233.748 mph)

10th Santino Ferrucci (233.412 mph)


Pato O’Ward, No. 5 Arrow McLaren Chevrolet:

“It was a rollercoaster of a day for us today, but I ended up quite happy with the No. 5 Arrow McLaren Chevy, and I think we’re ready for qualifying tomorrow. We ended the day strong.”

Callum Ilott, No. 6 Arrow McLaren Chevrolet:

“We had a bit of a stronger finish to the day than the start. We built things up a lot the whole way through and had some good speed. Now, it’s just about unlocking it. I think we’ve got a better baseline for tomorrow than what we started with today. I’m looking forward to it.”

Alexander Rossi, No. 7 Arrow McLaren Chevrolet:

“It was a good Fast Friday. I always love when we get to turn up the boost around here. I think the car is very close. It’s competitive as always out there, but I think we have the ability to fight for it tomorrow.”

Kyle Larson, No. 17 Arrow McLaren Chevrolet:

“I think I have to play it by ear and see how much you’re off or whatever. The Penske cars seem really fast, (Alexander) Rossi seems fast. I feel like the McLarens are the next best to the Penske cars. Just kind of see where you are on speed and then adjust. I felt like the one run where I felt closer to the limit, I would’ve made it a fourth lap. I guess that’s not a fun feeling being on the limit, I guess, in this place. Overall, I thought it was a decent day. Good to have it go smooth for once with no weather delays, or anything pop up. Just happy about today.”

“I think our car balance was in a comfortable spot that allowed me to be a little bit calmer in the car. If I went out there and felt on the limit of the rear tires, I would have felt like I was probably going a lot faster. I think they did a good job to deal with the balance and keeping me comfortable.”

What goals do you have for Qualifying weekend?

“I’m not sure. I think it’d be pretty neat to make the Fast 12, and then the Fast Six. I think that’d be pretty neat, but being a rookie, I don’t know if that’s to be expected but it’d be pretty cool to make that and be in the front couple of rows of the race. Just want to get a good, smooth run in and make the show first. Being the top rookie in qualifying would be cool as well.”

Gavin Ward, Team Principal at Arrow McLaren:

“We are in the mix. Now, it is going to be about getting the details right for tomorrow. We had a good day and are focused on a strong qualifying tomorrow.”

Rinus VeeKay, No. 21 Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet:

“Friday was fast. I think we’ve got some speed for tomorrow. Still got some left. Hoping for a good draw since it will be hot tomorrow. Let’s make sure we get to do it again on Sunday.”

Christian Rasmussen, No. 33 Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet:

“I got used to the boost quick! I thought the car had good balance. In the afternoon, when it warms up, everything was a little more dicey. I think we had a lot of wind this afternoon as well. That definitely makes a bit impact, but a lot of valuable lessons learned today. Got comfortable with the high boost and ready to go into qualifying. We’ll see what happens!”


THE MODERATOR: We’re going to begin our end of day news conferences, Josef Newgarden and Colton Herta will be on their way up. We’ll start with Kyle Larson, driver of the No. 17 Arrow McLaren Chevrolet. Kyle picked up the second quickest lap of the day at 234.271 miles an hour. Kyle, before you got up there you said it felt like a much smoother day today for you. Describe that a little bit.

KYLE LARSON: Yeah, today went a lot smoother. Just more so as planned. Where yesterday did not. I thought with the weather being — the forecast being good, I would get lots of laps, but did not. Was pretty frustrated with things yesterday.

Yeah, it all went smooth and was good to just get some reps with the boost and feeling all that. Yeah, happy with how it all went.

THE MODERATOR: Josef Newgarden also joins us who had the quickest four-lap average during all the qual sim runs that were happening. 234.063 miles an hour, back driving the No. 2 Shell Powering Progress Team Penske Chevrolet, set to qualify for your 13th Indianapolis 500. Your thoughts on — seemed like a pretty good day for a lot of teams today.

JOSEF NEWGARDEN: Yeah, it’s always interesting to see how this shapes up. Friday is one deal, and then tomorrow is going to be where it really comes together and you’re going to see where the field truly stacks up. But I think today is a good indicator, and we feel like we’re in a decent spot. We’re definitely in the mix, which is great to see. We’ve been working the last four years to try and get back into the mix in qualifying.

Really proud of the team. I think they’ve built fast cars. That’s what happens when you’re quick in qualifying here. It’s about a team effort and building fast cars. It doesn’t matter how good you are. You can’t will the car faster through ability. It is a team effort at Indianapolis.

The race is one deal, but qualifying really shows the true nature of the build quality. I think everybody at our shop should be really proud. They’ve done a good job over the off-season, and we’re excited for tomorrow.

THE MODERATOR: Josef also the top no-tow speed today, 234.260 miles per hour.

Q. Kyle, the fact that you work with Brian Campe at Hendrick Motorsports on the stock car side but he has a tremendous understanding of INDYCAR having worked at Team Penske, how huge of an asset is that for you in this endeavor?

KYLE LARSON: Yeah, I think it’s good just having somebody that I’ve gotten to be around the last couple years on the stock car side of things, somebody I’m comfortable with, and with his experience here at Indy as well as working with others, winning championships and big races and stuff, I know he’s been very excited to be a part of this opportunity. It’s been fun working with him and seeing him catch up with old friends and stuff.

He’s been a little rusty, though. He sent us out the first day a couple times looking for a pack. Just I’m out there all alone. Then today the first run he called me in after the third lap instead of making it four laps. I was joking with him that he’s a little bit rusty.

Either way, he’s a very intelligent person I feel like, and we’re lucky to have him at Hendrick Motorsports.

Also lucky that they loaned him for the couple weeks here.

Q. Josef, you worked with Brian Campe and Gavin Ward when they were both over at Team Penske. The fact that you realize he’s got them in their corner, how valuable do you think that is for what he’s trying to do?

JOSEF NEWGARDEN: I think they’re super valuable. They’ve both been my race engineer at some point in time, so I know them very well. Great guys, super — to Kyle’s point, very smart individuals, and no surprise to see where they are in their careers. Different paths but both super successful.

I think the strength on this team beside us is showing today. They all look very strong, and I think we’re going to have possibly a good fight this weekend. We’ll see how it ultimately shapes up.

It’s tough. There’s a lot of good talent in this series. Just to speak about my team, we feel like we’re in a good spot. We’ve got a lot of really good people. It’s also bigger than one person. We preach that at Team Penske. It’s a group working together trying to get the most out of each other, and when one person either moves on or we lose somebody, we try and just fill it in with our strength, and I think we’re pretty good at doing that.

Q. Josef, do you feel like a favorite for tomorrow or for the weekend now after putting in that run? It looked like an on-rails kind of run. I don’t know what it was like from the cockpit. Can you put yourself in a favorites role at this point?

JOSEF NEWGARDEN: No, I don’t think at Indianapolis. I’ve never felt like a favorite here, and I don’t know that I ever would. There’s so many good-quality teams nowadays. This race has changed from where it was 20 years ago. Just to speak recently. Certainly changes from 30, 40 years ago.

I think you could really choose who had the fast car throughout the month or who had the fastest cars.

Qualifying is still one thing. It shows general car speed. But you can’t ever get ahead of yourself here. That’s been my experience the last 12 years running at this place that stuff surprises you. There’s so many good quality teams and drivers that I just don’t think you can ever feel too confident and comfortable.

I think we’re in a good spot. There’s no doubt. I just wouldn’t consider ourselves a favorite. I think we’ve just shown up prepared and ready, and now we need to execute tomorrow and Sunday.

Q. Kyle, what was it like getting the extra horsepower today? Did it feel like a different beast? What was it like to drive that with more horsepower?

KYLE LARSON: For me, surprisingly, it didn’t feel as different as I was expecting it to be. It’s obviously different. You can tell you’re going faster and you’re a little bit more on the limit of things.

But I was expecting like from what I’ve heard or just from watching Indianapolis stuff in the past, the commentators do such a great job of making it seem like it’s like, boom, you’re going 100 miles an hour faster.

It didn’t feel way different, so I was happy about that. I think our car balance was in a comfortable spot, too, that allowed me to be a little bit calmer in the car, where I think if I would have went out there and felt on the limit of the rear tires, then yeah, I would have felt like I probably going way faster.

I think they did a good job today with the balance and keeping me comfortable.

Q. Kyle, going back to the frustration of yesterday and feeling like, hey, we got a lot of time here to make laps, can you walk us through that? Was it just the engine change in the morning and then things compounded from there and caught the team out?

KYLE LARSON: Yeah, I’m not sure all the setbacks throughout the day, but I know that — we knew on — what was yesterday, Thursday? Tuesday, that we were going to have to change. So I was all ready for that. I don’t know, I think it all just took longer than anticipated. I was told we were going to be ready about 45 minutes after, and then it ended up being like another 45 minutes later, and then we went out and had to do our install stuff. I made just one run by myself to get familiar with things, and then we tried to go out there in a little draft run, but there wasn’t much of one, and then everybody left to go swap over to Q trim, so then we did, and then that took a little bit longer than expected.

By that point, the rain was approaching. I just didn’t get a lot of time, which I felt like I’ve missed out on some good opportunity of people drafting.

That just is what it is, and I know there will be more chances on Monday and Friday hopefully if weather cooperates. But yeah, I was just expecting — like hey, Thursday has got the best forecast of this week, so I thought I was going to — I think my optimism was too high, I guess. You never know what’s going to happen with weather here and issues that pop up.

I just thought that I was going to run a lot more. But nobody’s fault. I wasn’t mad at anybody. I was just mad that I didn’t get to run more.

Q. Today how comfortable were you with the tools? I know you said you practiced that with the knobs and the buttons. Was that easier than you thought? I think Townsend and Hinch were saying on the broadcast they noticed one time the shifting pattern might have needed a little bit of improvement or the precision of the weight jack. Are they working with you on that stuff a little bit?

KYLE LARSON: Yeah, I don’t do very good multitasking at all. Like it was okay when I went out there and just ran sixth gear the whole time and I could just worry about the weight jacker and my balance was in a good spot. I didn’t even feel like I needed to adjust the car at all. But then there was other runs where I had to adjust the bar, and then I hit the weight jacker, then I adjusted the bar, then I go down the straight, like oh, shit, I have to hit the button again, and then I’m about to the corner.

It’s just more than what I’m used to doing. But I think each run I got a little bit more comfortable and we got to kind of adjust moving some buttons around and playing with the colors of things. I think that was all coming to me a little bit.

But thankfully, again, the balance was in a comfortable spot, so I didn’t really have to be super busy in the cockpit.

Q. Kyle, this is the fastest you’ve ever been in a race car, but you’ve driven sprint cars that have a lot more horsepower. Did that feeling of acceleration — how different did that feeling of acceleration feel when you’re going that fast, when you get up to speed, compared to being in a sprint car or something like that?

KYLE LARSON: Well, it’s just so different. When you’re in a sprint car, you’re 950 horsepower, 1,400 pounds on a quarter mile with the gear to match that. So yeah, that acceleration is different.

But I feel like the acceleration in an INDYCAR is pretty incredible for what I’ve gotten to ever feel in a two-mile track or whatever, two and a half mile, whatever this is. Just like going through the gears, it accelerates way faster than a stock car does. That’s fun, feeling that.

But it’s hard to compare between a sprint car and an INDYCAR.

Q. Josef, hearing Kyle talk about all the different buttons and the tools and the adjustments, does it remind you of everything you had to experience when you were learning about all the different things from an INDYCAR, when you were adjusting from Indy Lights? Any flashbacks of that?

JOSEF NEWGARDEN: Yeah, definitely. First time I drove an INDYCAR was really the first time I drove anything professionally. I’m sure it’s a little different experience for Kyle. He’s coming from a different place and background.

But it’s a process for sure to learn this specific form of motorsport. I can only imagine going to the NASCAR side would be similar in that there’s a lot to learn. Maybe the process is different, tools are different. But —

KYLE LARSON: There’s no tools.

JOSEF NEWGARDEN: There you go, there’s no tools. But it is true nowadays, you get to — top levels of everything, everybody is so in tune and specialized at what they do, and they know it so well. Regardless, I think it’s a lot to take in and master quickly.

I think that’s the challenge for sure is you’re coming up in a — Kyle has got an opportunity to compete against people that are doing this all year, just trying to maximize this form of racing. It’s a fun challenge I’m sure. I can only imagine trying it the other way. It’s cool to have him here. Obviously for us, we want to have the best of the best running in this race, and Kyle only adds to that, which is fantastic.

Q. Kyle, this race has a lot of traditions and pageantry and stuff like that, and one of the first ones is the qualifying draw that comes up next. A couple years ago Tim Cindric picked for Josef and Scott and got booed off the stage. Last year Scott picked on his own and stormed off in a rage at what he drew. Who’s picking for you, and do you have any idea of where you want to be when that thing flips?

KYLE LARSON: So my son is drawing, Owen. But we’ll see. I’m sure him and Audrey might fight over it here shortly.

I don’t know. I mean, it sounds like the track will be a little bit cooler, I think, when we start, so I think you would want to go out earlier. But you also would like to have some teammates go out before you, I believe.

I don’t know, somewhere in the first eight with a couple teammates in front of you would be nice. But I don’t know.

Q. Do you plan on milking the cow next week?

KYLE LARSON: What? Is that a thing?

Q. The rookies have to milk a cow.

KYLE LARSON: What? Where is this?

Q. Josef will fill you in.

KYLE LARSON: Oh, my gosh. Yeah, I guess I will.

Q. That hasn’t changed your decision to do the Indianapolis 500, has it?

KYLE LARSON: Do we get to glove up?

Q. I was talking with your dad earlier and he said one of his fondest recent memories of this race is he thought the 2012 race he thought you guys — you ran the night before the 500 and you went off to Ohio the next day and Sato and Dario had their thing, but he said it was a fond moment of you guys huddled together and watching on a phone screen of this race. Do you have any recollection of that day?

KYLE LARSON: Kind of. Now that you mention that, I just remember we were in the car driving. Did Sato win? Yeah. I just remember — I can’t believe we had live streams back then. Yeah, I think I remember watching on the screen, and he just did like a late move to the inside of Dixon, I believe —

Q. Dario.

KYLE LARSON: Okay. I remember it being a Ganassi car, and yeah, spinning. I’m half Japanese, so I remember cheering for Sato in that moment and was a little bit bummed that he didn’t win.

I was happy for both — I guess I was Ganassi then. But I was conflicted in who I was cheering for. I just remember — I don’t know if they feel the same way, but I remember watching it, like Sato was crazy. That was fun.