Dixon fastest in shortened first practice at Texas

by Jordan Groves

Scott Dixon set the fastest time of the first practice session ahead of this weekend’s NTT IndyCar Series 2019 DXC Technology 600 at Texas Motor Speedway. The session, which was scheduled to last two hours, was cut short due to rain.

Just over thirty-minutes of green flag running actually took place during the session. Despite the short amount of time, over seven-hundred laps were turned by the twenty-two runners.

By the abbreviated end of the session, Dixon had set the best lap time of 23.6380 or 219.308-mph; just one-hundredth of a second faster than second-placed Takuma Sato for Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing. After the session, Dixon would rue the lost time, saying that: “We didn’t really get to run as much as we would have liked.”

Dixon, a three-time winner at Texas Motor Speedway, will be hoping that his speed holds up throughout the rest of the weekend as he seeks to build on the momentum from his first win of the season last Sunday at the Detroit Grand Prix and make a run at the championship-leaders.

It was a decent session for the aforementioned Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing. Sato was second-fastest, just ahead of team-mate Graham Rahal in third-place. The pair showed great pace throughout the first oval race of the season at the Indianapolis 500 and will be hoping that the speed translates over to Texas Motor Speedway this weekend.

Fourth-place in the session was Carlin‘s Charlie Kimball, with the now part-time driver further underlining his oval racing capabilities in his #23 Chevrolet. Fifth-place would be Team Penske‘s Will Power, who completed the most laps of anybody during the short session, with forty-eight laps under his belt when the remainder of the session was cancelled.

Sixth-place would be Andretti Autosport‘s Alexander Rossi, with Harding Steinbrenner Racing‘s Colton Herta finishing the session as the fastest rookie. Zach Veach, Ryan Hunter-Reay and Ed Carpenter rounded out the top ten, with Carpenter preparing for his second outing of the 2019 NTT IndyCar Series in the #20 Chevrolet usually piloted by Ed Jones.

Aside from Herta, the remaining rookies in the field were all further towards the bottom of the time-sheets, perhaps due to the little amount of time that they had to get used to the high-banks of Texas Motor Speedway. Dale Coyne Racing‘s Santino Ferrucci was seventeenth-fastest, just behind reigning Indy 500 winner Simon Pagenaud in sixteenth, with Arrow Schmidt Peterson‘s Marcus Ericsson eighteenth-fastest.

Chip Ganassi Racing‘s rookie, Felix Rosenqvist, was twentieth-fastest, just ahead of veteran Marco Andretti in twenty-first. The order was completed by the returning Conor Daly, who made his first appearance in the #59 Carlin Chevrolet following Max Chilton‘s announcement earlier this week that he would not contest the remaining oval races of the season. Daly will be hoping to get used to his new surroundings to get closer to his team-mate, Kimball, for the rest of the weekend.

Practice and qualifying will be run later today, with the race itself, the DXC Technology 600, taking place under the lights tomorrow night, Saturday, June 8.

Credit: Chris Jones / Courtesy of IndyCar

2019 NTT IndyCar Series – DXC Technology 600 – Practice one top twelve results:

19Scott DixonNZLChip Ganassi Racing219.308
230Takuma SatoJAPRahal Letterman Lanigan Racing219.262
315Graham RahalUSARahal Letterman Lanigan Racing218.311
423Charlie KimballUSACarlin217.503
512Will PowerAUSTeam Penske217.196
627Alexander RossiUSAAndretti Autosport217.134
788Colton Herta (R)USAHarding Steinbrenner Racing217.095
826Zach VeachUSAAndretti Autosport216.840
928Ryan Hunter-ReayUSAAndretti Autosport216.681
1020Ed CarpenterUSAEd Carpenter Racing215.653
1118Sebastien BourdaisFRADale Coyne Racing with Vasser Sullivan215.972
125James HinchcliffeCANArrow Schmidt Peterson215.970

Full results of practice are available by clicking the following link: http://www.imscdn.com/indycar_media/documents/2019-06-06/06-06-19%20Texas%20P1.pdf

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