Foster tops Indy NXT Open Test at Milwaukee

Indy NXT by Firestone drivers conducted a fact-finding mission during a series open test on Wednesday at the historic Milwaukee Mile at Wisconsin State Fair Park. With less than 80 days until Hy-Vee Milwaukee Mile 250s Weekend, August 30-September 1, a bumper crop of 20 drivers representing six teams turned laps at the one-mile oval to prepare for race weekend and the first IndyCar race weekend at the iconic track since 2015.

Andretti Global’s Louis Foster was the fastest driver, posting a top average speed of 149.525 mph in the No. 26 car. Jacob Abel followed at 149.338 mph in the No. 51 ABEL Motorsports car with Salvador de Alba Jr. as the third fastest at 148.942 mph in the No. 2 Andretti Cape Indy NXT entry.

Wednesday’s test proved invaluable to the developing Indy NXT drivers, many of whom need oval experience as the series gears up for its first oval race of the 2024 season at Iowa Speedway on July 13.


“I enjoy driving it. On our own, it’s one thing, but in traffic, I expect it’s something else,” said Andretti Global driver Jamie Chadwick, who earned her first Indy NXT win when she captured last Saturday’s series race at the Road America road course. “It seems quite tricky to pass, so trying to learn the race craft and the line is going to be a big thing when it comes to race weekend.”

Indy NXT features four oval races this season with events at Iowa, World Wide Technology Raceway, Milwaukee Mile, and Nashville Superspeedway. Test sessions like Wednesday’s experience at Milwaukee Mile are beneficial to the next generation of IndyCar stars as they hone their oval racing skills and techniques.

“This is literally my first time in an actual formula car outside of doing Skip Barber Racing School which is different than my normal 900-horsepower sprint car,” said Taylor Ferns, driver of the No. 55 car for ABEL Motorsports, who participated in her first Indy NXT test Wednesday before making her series debut next month at Iowa Speedway. “I come from an open-wheel racing background, and I love USAC Silver Crown cars and sprint car racing. I don’t really run flat tracks anymore, so I think this is a good place to go first to work on the finesse part and I hope to improve each time we go out.”

The drivers tested throughout the day with competitors recording over 2,788 combined laps at the iconic Milwaukee Mile. In its history, INDY NXT by Firestone has held 27 races at the Milwaukee Mile. With just nine-degree banking in its turns, the track drives like a road course, which often leads to thrilling races.

“I am having a blast, this is my first time on a big oval,” said Myles Rowe, driver of the No. 99 car for HMD Motorsports/Force Indy. “My first time down the front and back straights, I was kind of taken away. It was so big! So much room. You have a lot of room to unwind the wheel. You can open up the entries for the corners. That was really fun learning this morning.”

The Milwaukee Mile will host the Indy NXT by Firestone Milwaukee 100 on Saturday, August 31, which will be live streamed on Peacock at 2:50 p.m. CT.


Story originally appeared on Racer