Despite a three-hour delay thanks to rain, practice for the Rainguard Water Sealers 600 at the Texas Motor Speedway got underway on Friday, and it was Scott Dixon who led a Chip Ganassi Racing 1-2 at the head of the field.
Rain fell overnight and into the morning, but thanks to a new track surface and drainage system, it was soon dried out to allow an hour of running, with championship leader Dixon setting a best time of 23.2027mph (223.422mph) to deny team-mate Charlie Kimball.
Kimball had been leading the way before Dixon’s lap, with the American setting a best lap of 221.861mph, with all twenty-two drivers all within eight-tenths of a second of one-another.
Alexander Rossi placed third for Andretti Herta Autosport with a lap of 221.317mph, just ahead of last weekend’s double race winner in Detroit, and defending Texas victor Graham Rahal.
Marco Andretti and Takuma Sato were fifth and sixth for Andretti Autosport in a Honda-dominated top six, with Ed Carpenter the leading Chevrolet-powered driver in seventh ahead of Team Penske’s Will Power, Ganassi’s Tony Kanaan and Penske’s Josef Newgarden.
Tristan Vautier ended sixteenth fastest in his first practice session on his return to Dale Coyne Racing as Sebastien Bourdais’ stand-in, while Gabby Chaves was twenty-first for Harding Racing, who are making only their second race appearance of the year after an impressive debut in last months Indianapolis 500.
Texas Motor Speedway Free Practice 1 Result
|1||9||Scott Dixon||NZL||Chip Ganassi Racing||23.2027|
|2||83||Charlie Kimball||USA||Chip Ganassi Racing||23.3660|
|3||98||Alexander Rossi||USA||Andretti Herta Autosport||23.4234|
|4||15||Graham Rahal||USA||Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing||23.4385|
|5||27||Marco Andretti||USA||Andretti Autosport||23.4549|
|6||26||Takuma Sato||JAP||Andretti Autosport||23.4753|
|7||20||Ed Carpenter||USA||Ed Carpenter Racing||23.4757|
|8||12||Will Power||AUS||Team Penske||23.4827|
|9||10||Tony Kanaan||BRZ||Chip Ganassi Racing||23.4884|
|10||2||Josef Newgarden||USA||Team Penske||23.4920|
|11||7||Mikhail Aleshin||RUS||Schmidt Peterson Motorsports||23.5125|
|12||1||Simon Pagenaud||FRA||Team Penske||23.5356|
|13||3||Helio Castroneves||BRZ||Team Penske||23.5569|
|14||8||Max Chilton||GBR||Chip Ganassi Racing||23.5607|
|15||21||JR Hildebrand||USA||Ed Carpenter Racing||23.5685|
|16||18||Tristan Vautier||FRA||Dale Coyne Racing||23.6553|
|17||28||Ryan Hunter-Reay||USA||Andretti Autosport||23.6688|
|18||14||Carlos Munoz||COL||AJ Foyt Enterprises||23.6911|
|19||19||Ed Jones||UAE||Dale Coyne Racing||23.6969|
|20||5||James Hinchcliffe||CAN||Schmidt Peterson Motorsports||23.7566|
|21||88||Gabby Chaves||USA||Harding Racing||23.9592|
|22||4||Conor Daly||USA||AJ Foyt Enterprises||23.9934|