St. Petersburg IndyCar: Rosenqvist leads opening practice

IndyCar rookie Felix Rosenqvist put Chip Ganassi Racing-Honda on top in opening practice for the Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg, while compatriot Marcus Ericsson took third.

St. Petersburg IndyCar: Rosenqvist leads opening practice

Rosenqvist was the first driver into the 62sec bracket, as the rookies – who are granted an extra set of tires for the weekend – hit the 1.8-mile street/runway course early.

His time then gradually fell down the top 10 as the series veterans emerged, but with eight minutes to go, Rosenqvist re-emerged and lowered his mark to 61.8215sec, an average of 104.818mph.

Andretti Autosport-Honda’s Ryan Hunter-Reay drew to within quarter-second of this benchmark, while Ericsson of Arrow Schmidt Peterson Motorsports-Honda made it two Swedes in the top three.

The second Ganassi car of five-time and reigning champion Scott Dixon completed only 15 laps compared with his teammate’s 25, but still clocked fourth ahead of the man he beat to the 2018 title, Alexander Rossi (Andretti Autosport).

Takuma Sato and Graham Rahal were sixth and eighth for Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing-Honda, despite Rahal grinding his left-side wheels along a wall.

The pair were separated by Chevrolet’s leading runner in the session, Josef Newgarden of Team Penske. His teammates Will Power and Simon Pagenaud were 10th and 12th.

The session was ended a minute early when rookie Ben Hanley’s DragonSpeed-Chevrolet expired at Turn 4 on its 15th lap.

FP1 results:

Pos. # Driver Team Time Gap
1 10 Sweden Felix Rosenqvist United States Chip Ganassi Racing 1'01.8215  
2 28 United States Ryan Hunter-Reay United States Andretti Autosport 1'02.0636 0.2421
3 7 Sweden Marcus Ericsson Arrow Schmidt Peterson Motorsports 1'02.0811 0.2596
4 9 New Zealand Scott Dixon United States Chip Ganassi Racing 1'02.1309 0.3094
5 27 United States Alexander Rossi United States Andretti Autosport 1'02.1470 0.3255
6 30 Japan Takuma Sato United States Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing 1'02.1571 0.3356
7 2 United States Josef Newgarden United States Team Penske 1'02.1740 0.3525
8 15 United States Graham Rahal United States Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing 1'02.1852 0.3637
9 26 United States Zach Veach United States Andretti Autosport 1'02.1925 0.3710
10 12 Australia Will Power United States Team Penske 1'02.2758 0.4543
11 18 France Sébastien Bourdais Dale Coyne Racing with Vasser Sullivan 1'02.2884 0.4669
12 22 France Simon Pagenaud United States Team Penske 1'02.3094 0.4879
13 5 Canada James Hinchcliffe Arrow Schmidt Peterson Motorsports 1'02.3140 0.4925
14 21 United States Spencer Pigot United States Ed Carpenter Racing 1'02.3703 0.5488
15 23 United States Charlie Kimball United Kingdom Carlin 1'02.4607 0.6392
16 60 United Kingdom Jack Harvey Meyer Shank Racing with Arrow SPM 1'02.5047 0.6832
17 88 United States Colton Herta Harding Steinbrenner Racing 1'02.5090 0.6875
18 98 United States Marco Andretti Andretti Herta Autosport 1'02.5566 0.7351
19 14 Brazil Tony Kanaan United States A.J. Foyt Enterprises 1'02.6139 0.7924
20 4 Brazil Matheus Leist United States A.J. Foyt Enterprises 1'02.6625 0.8410
21 19 United States Santino Ferrucci United States Dale Coyne Racing 1'02.7381 0.9166
22 20 United Arab Emirates Ed Jones Ed Carpenter Racing 1'02.7487 0.9272
23 59 United Kingdom Max Chilton United Kingdom Carlin 1'02.9065 1.0850
24 81 United Kingdom Ben Hanley DragonSpeed 1'04.9341 3.1126
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About this article

Series IndyCar
Event St. Pete
Drivers Felix Rosenqvist
Teams Chip Ganassi Racing
Author David Malsher-Lopez
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