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Pedersen stays on top in Indy Lights FP2 in Nashville

by Bethonie Waring

Photo: Penske Entertainment / Travis Hinkle

Benjamin Pedersen topped the order in the final free practice session before Indy Lights qualifying in Nashville.

Pedersen, who was quickest in Friday practrice, lowered his quickest time around the street circuit to 1m21.0820s.

Andretti Autosport’s Hunter McElrea was second fastest in FP2, though had traffic issues on many of his best laps and ended the session 0.308 seconds slower than Pedersen.

McElrea also almost found himself in the wall in the final seconds of the session. He had been running close behind Kyffin Simpson, who hit the wall heavily at the final corner, bringing out the red flag at the same time as the chequered flag fell. McElrea managed to avoid copying Simpson’s incident.

Simpson wasn’t the only one to find the limits of the track in Indy Lights first visit to Nashville. Matthew Brabham had a small incident at Turn 9 early on, then Danial Frost nosed into the barriers at Turn 11. Both drivers were able to continue.

Brabham ended up going third fastest, with points leader Linus Lundqvist 0.3559s back in fourth, and Frost slotted into fifth place.

Despite running at the sharp end of the field early on, Sting Ray Robb appeared to have an issue late on. The Andretti Autosport driver was moving slowly on track as the chequered flag fell and ended the session seventh quickest, behind Jacob Abel.

Christian Rasmussen, Christian Bogle and Simpson completed the top 10.

Free practice results
Pos Driver Team Time Gap Laps
1 Benjamin Pedersen Global Racing Group w/ HMD 1m21.0820s 22
2 Hunter McElrea Andretti Autosport 1m21.3900s +0.3080s 24
3 Matthew Brabham Andretti Autosport 1m21.3932s +0.3112s 22
4 Linus Lundqvist HMD Motorsports 1m21.4379s +0.3559s 20
5 Danial Frost HMD Motorsports 1m21.4623s +0.3803s 23
6 Jacob Abel Abel Motorsports 1m21.5539s +0.4719s 24
7 Sting Ray Robb Andretti Autosport 1m21.6634s +0.5814s 22
8 Christian Rasmussen Andretti Autosport 1m21.8125s +0.7305s 21
9 Christian Bogle HMD Motorsports 1m21.9303s +0.8483s 21
10 Kyffin Simpson HMD Motorsports 1m22.0831s +1.0011s 21
11 Ernie Francis Jr. Force Indy 1m22.6846s +1.6026s
12 James Roe Jr HMD Motorsports 1m22.7164s +1.6344s