Power paces INDYCAR GP opening practice

Photo: IndyCar

INDIANAPOLIS – Will Power led the opening 45-minute practice for the Verizon IndyCar Series’ INDYCAR Grand Prix, in the No. 12 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet, as he looks for his first victory of the season.

Power put down a best time of 1:09.3172 to lead the 22-car field, around the 2.439-mile, 14-turn road course.

Scott Dixon was the top Honda in second in the No. 9 NTT Data Honda for Chip Ganassi Racing, at 1:09.4096.

Barber winner Josef Newgarden, Phoenix winner and defending series and race champion Simon Pagenaud and past Indy Lights and Pro Mazda champion Spencer Pigot completed the top five.

Juan Pablo Montoya was seventh in his first official IndyCar race weekend session of 2017, driving the No. 22 Fitzgerald Glider Kits Chevrolet as Team Penske’s fifth car.

The top 20 were covered by 0.9049 of a second with only Marco Andretti and Conor Daly outside that margin.

One red flag briefly interrupted the session for debris on track and a couple drivers had lock-ups or off-course excursions, but there were no major incidents. It was a cool session with ambient temperature of 56 degrees and 63 on track, per Firestone.

Second practice runs from 12:25 to 1:10 p.m. before qualifying this afternoon from 4:20 to 5:35 p.m., on a rare day with three official IndyCar sessions.