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SPEEDWAY, Ind. — Fast Friday saw the Honda engines dominate in the conversation of raw speed.

With an extra boost of horsepower and cars trimmed out in preparation for qualifying, nine of the fastest ten cars on the overall speed chart were drivers of Honda-powered cars, led by the Ganassi drivers of Scott Dixon and Alex Palou.

Dixon was quickest with a single lap at 233.302.

“The team was really fast, you know I think anytime one of the Ganassi cars went out the improved,” Dixon said. “Obviously it was really tough out there today. Just really tough to get a clear track.”

The main point of focus was the teams preparing for a four-lap run in qualifying, which Dixon found hard to do and he was frustrated by the time the practice session ended.

Drivers were jockeying for position on track in order to have clean are and to now acquire an aerodynamic tow from a car in front of them. Having clean air gives teams the best possible conditions for simulating a qualifying run.

The fastest among those turning in a four-lap qualifying sim was Marcus Ericsson, also of Ganassi, at 231.949 mph.

Pato O’Ward of Arrow McLaren SP was the top Chevy on the four-lap chart with an average of 231.522, good for the third-fastest average.

“We are in the place of happy,” O’Ward jokingly said after the session. “My Chevy has been good to me so far. I will sleep at peace tonight. I ended happy with my car and ready for qualifying tomorrow.”

Other Chevy drivers struggled to find the speed, no team more so than Team Penske. Josef Newgarden was the fastest of the Penske Chevy’s at 22nd on the single lap chart. None of the Penske drivers were able to put down a competitive four-lap average.

Dixon says drivers are going to have to be on the ball to get a solid qualifying run in given how hot the track is forecast to be this weekend.

“You know a gust of wind alters your speed or even if you get a bad downshift or upshift it just ruins your laps,” he said. “Consistency is definitely going to be key so you can execute ono your first run, but sometimes it’s out of your control.”

Qualifying to choose the Fast Nine, set the positions 10-30, and decide who will be in the Last Row Shootout will all start at Noon, after two groups of practice starting at 9:30 a.m. Saturday morning.

Qualifying runs will go until 5:50 p.m.

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