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Robb fastest in Indy Lights Detroit practice

by Bethonie Waring

Photo: Matt Fraver

Sting Ray Robb topped free practice for Indy Lights’ double-header weekend on the streets of l Detroit.

The Andretti driver jumped to the top of the order late on with a 1m23.217s lap. The time knocked early pacesetter Linus Lundqvist off the top spot.

Robb further lowered the benchmark, becoming the only driver to set a sub-1m23s lap during the session. He ended the morning with a best of 1m22.894s.

The result puts him in a good position as Indy Lights runs a new format this weekend. Qualifying will be split into two shortened sessions, which will set the grid for a sprint and a feature race around Detroit’s Belle Isle.

Indy Lights is also revising its push-to-pass system this weekend to mirror IndyCar’s time allocation.

“Previously, drivers had to be within 1.5 seconds of the car in front of them and were limited to a minimum of 15 pushes for 15 seconds. Now, like the IndyCar series, there is no minimum gap, and there is a maximum use of 15 seconds at any time for a 50-horsepower boost. Drivers will begin with 150 seconds this weekend,” read a series press release.

Championship leader Lundqvist set the pace early on in practice. Robb and Lundqvist swapped places a number of times but Lundqvist gradually dropped down the order in the closing stages of the session.

Matthew Brabham and Hunter McElrea both jumped ahead of Lundqvist, ending up second and third fastest respectively. Brabham was just 0.106s off Robb’s time when the chequered flag fell.

Benjamin Pedersen was fifth, ahead of Christian Rasmussen and Danial Frost.

Jacob Abel, Kyffin Simpson and Antonio Serravalle completed the top 10.

Ryan Phinny, on the second weekend of his single-seater return, was over four-and-a-half seconds off the pace.

Free practice results
Pos Driver Team Time Gap Laps
1 Sting Ray Robb Andretti Autosport 1m22.8943s 27
2 Matthew Brabham Andretti Autosport 1m23.0010s +0.1067s 28
3 Hunter McElrea Andretti Autosport 1m23.1351s +0.2048s 28
4 Linus Lunqvist HMD Motorsports 1m23.2477s +0.3534s 25
5 Benjamin Pedersen Global Racing Group w/ HMD 1m23.4802s +0.5859s 25
6 Christian Rasmussen Andretti Autosport 1m23.5328s +0.6385s 27
7 Danial Frost HMD Motorsports 1m23.6350s +0.7407s 27
8 Jacob Abel Abel Motorsports 1m23.8370s +0.9427s 24
9 Kyffin Simpson TJ Speed 1m23.9909s +1.0966s 27
10 Antonio Serravalle Abel Motorsports 1m24.2715s +1.3772s 27
11 Christian Bogle HMD Motorsports 1m24.5233s +1.6290s 26
12 Ernie Francis Jr Force Indy 1m24.9614s +2.0671s 29
13 James Roe Jr TJ Speed 1m25.1723s +2.2780s 31
14 Ryan Phinny Abel Motorsports 1m27.5213s +4.6270s 20