Montoya heads Penske 1-2 in first practice at Long Beach

Juan Pablo Montoya, winner of the first street race of the season in St. Petersburg, picked up where he left off, as he set the early pace at the 42nd Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach.

Montoya heads Penske 1-2 in first practice at Long Beach

Although AJ Foyt Racing-Honda’s Takuma Sato, who won here in 2013, was first driver into the 68sec bracket, clocking a 68.7097sec (103.112mph) lap on his fifth lap, he relinquished top spot to Team Penske-Chevrolet’s Juan Pablo Montoya by over 0.4sec.

Following a red flag due to a crash for rookie Alexander Rossi, Montoya clipped his time further on his 13th lap, getting down to 68.1290sec, mere thousandths off a 104mph lap.

In the dying moments of the session, Montoya’s teammate Will Power got within a quarter-second of the Colombian when the red came out for a second time.

This time it was due to Charlie Kimball in a run-off area with the front brakes alight on his #83 Chip Ganassi Racing-Chevrolet.

Speaking of brake problems, Jack Hawksworth put the second Foyt car into P3 despite early in the session spinning as a result of boiling brake fluid.

Fourth place went to Josef Newgarden’s Ed Carpenter Racing-Chevrolet, while Sato clung on to fifth.

James Hinchcliffe (Schmidt Peterson Motorsports), and Andretti Autosport pairing Ryan Hunter Reay and Carlos Munoz ensured a total of five Hondas in the top 10.

Defending polesitter Helio Castroneves (Penske) and defending winner Scott Dixon (Ganassi-Chevrolet) were eighth and 10th respectively.

Rossi went into the tires at Turn 8 on his ninth lap with 15mins remaining in the session. The incident came not long after he had replaced a cut left-front tire with a fresh one on his Andretti Autosport-Honda and the Californian admitted that the resulting balance alteration had simply caught him out.

That brought out the red flag for some eight minutes, prompting IndyCar to add five minutes to the session, and left Dale Coyne Racing’s Conor Daly as top rookie in 17th.

Practice 1 results

Pos.#DriverTeamTime
1 2 ColombieJuan Pablo Montoya Penske (C) 1:08.1290
2 12 AustralieWill Power Penske (C) +0.2424
3 41 Royaume-UniJack Hawksworth Foyt (H) +0.3549
4 21 États-UnisJosef Newgarden Carpenter (C) +0.4760
5 14 JaponTakuma Sato Foyt (H) +0.5807
6 5 CanadaJames Hinchcliffe Schmidt (H) +0.6275
7 28 États-UnisRyan Hunter-Reay Andretti (H) +0.6324
8 3 BrésilHelio Castroneves Penske (C) +0.7694
9 26 ColombieCarlos Munoz Andretti (H) +0.7790
10 9 Nouvelle-ZélandeScott Dixon Ganassi (C) +0.8221
11 11 FranceSebastien Bourdais KVSH (C) +0.8331
12 15 États-UnisGraham Rahal Rahal (H) +0.8535
13 83 États-UnisCharlie Kimball Ganassi (C) +0.9276
14 27 États-UnisMarco Andretti Andretti (H) +1.0749
15 7 RussieMikhail Aleshin Schmidt (H) +1.0900
16 10 BrésilTony Kanaan Ganassi (C) +1.1040
17 18 États-UnisConor Daly Coyne (H) +1.2343
18 22 FranceSimon Pagenaud Penske (C) +1.2842
19 8 Royaume-UniMax Chilton Ganassi (C) +1.4446
20 19 ItalieLuca Filippi Coyne (H) +1.5573
21 98 États-UnisAlexander Rossi Andretti-Herta (H) +1.8931

 

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