Alonso fires warning shot on Fast Friday

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Howard used the draft available to him and clocked a lap at 226.744mph to finish comfortably quickest, nearly one mile per hour faster than Andretti Autosport's Ryan Hunter-Reay, who posted a 225.825. My biggest takeaway from being behind the wheel was just sheer excitement. They're all very supportive of me and keep wishing me good luck.

"It's pretty exciting just to be in the mix, knowing that we seemingly have a chance to do well in qualifying", Bourdais said.

Two-time Formula One champion Fernando Alonso was fifth at 231.549 before rain doused the 2.5-mile oval, stopping practice. He's doing well already and once we get down to the nitty-gritty in qualifying, he's not going to have any issue with getting the auto on the limit and finding where he's comfortable. The Spaniard will do so in a McLaren-Andretti Autosport entry powered by Honda.

"The driving technique is quite different", Alonso said.

Despite missing the race in Monte Carlo, Alonso had very little hope of impressing around the street venue.

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"We worked still a lot on the race situation, keeping other guys out there and running in traffic".

The truncated "Month of May" format leaves more than 30 hours of practice time available prior to the qualifying weekend.

The vehicle driven by Spencer Pigot hits the wall in the second turn during a practice session for the Indianapolis 500 IndyCar auto race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, Friday, May 19, 2017 in Indianapolis.

Alonso's learning curve has been steep ahead of his Indy 500 debut, but the Spaniard was able to record a quickest individual lap average of 231.827 miles per hour. Speeds are expected to increase in Friday's final practice day before qualifications for "The Greatest Spectacle in Racing". After a slow start during the practice session, Alonso seems to have caught up with the way everything works at the Indy 500 as he managed a fourth place finish in the fourth practice session.

Running continues on Saturday with the first stage of qualifying to decide which drivers make the Fast Nine shoot-out for pole position on Sunday.

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