Ryan Briscoe, back in the No. 5 Arrow/Lucas Oil Schmidt Peterson Honda for Auto Club Speedway and likely for the foreseeable future in the Verizon IndyCar Series, set the fastest speed during the opening 45-minute practice session for the MAVTV 500 in Fontana, Calif.
The three rookie drivers had an hour of running from 8:30 to 9:30 a.m. local time before the remainder of the field joined in at 9:30.
Briscoe’s best speed was 217.451 mph, just ahead of another Honda-powered driver in past ACS polesitter Marco Andretti in the No. 27 Snapple Honda for Andretti Autosport. Andretti’s best speed was 217.316 mph.
Simon Pagenaud led a quartet of Chevrolet runners from third to sixth, ahead of Charlie Kimball, Tony Kanaan and Toronto winner Josef Newgarden.
Speeds from an incident-free first practice are linked below.