Hinchcliffe tops opening IndyCar practice in Long Beach
Practice 1 on the streets of Long Beach saw James Hinchcliffe top the time sheet with a lap of 1 minute, 9.8110 seconds. Last April, the Andretti Autosport driver in the No. 27 entry was quickest in the opening session the 1.968-mile, 11-turn course at 1:08.9187. One notable difference is that the team switched to the twin-turbocharged Honda engine this season.
Eight different teams were represented in the top 10, and the top 17 cars were separated by less than a second.
Helio Castroneves, driving the No. 3 AAA Southern California Team Penske car, was 0.1795 of a second behind Hinchcliffe. Justin Wilson in the No. 19 Dale Coyne Racing car was third (1:10.0080) and Ryan Hunter-Reay was fourth (1:10.0340) in the No. 28 DHL car for Andretti Autosport.
Drivers also were practicing for the standing start -- the first of the season and the first at Long Beach since 2008 -- for the 80-lap race April 13.
A second 45-minute practice is scheduled for 5 p.m. (ET).
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