Rookie Robert Wickens and veteran Tony Kanaan emerged in a tie atop the speed chart following Friday’s opening Verizon IndyCar Series practice for the DXC Technology 600.
Wickens and Kanaan each recorded a hot lap of 220.014 mph around Texas Motor Speedway’s 1.5-mile oval during the 90-minute session. Wickens, a native of Toronto, Canada, logged 58 laps in his first stint around TMS as driver of the No. 6 Lucas Oil Schmidt Peterson Motorsports Honda.
Kanaan, the 2004 series champion and 2013 Indy 500 winner, ran 59 laps in the No. 14 ABC Supply Chevrolet fielded by native Texan and open-wheel legend A.J. Foyt Jr.
Sebastien Bourdais, a four-time Indy car champion, was third-fast at 219.619 mph in the No. 18 SealMaster Honda fielded by Dale Coyne Racing. Bourdais did not compete at TMS last June while recovering from injuries suffered in a crash during qualifying for the 101st Indianapolis 500 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Alexander Rossi, the 2016 Indy 500 champion from Andretti Autosport, was fourth overall at 219.355 mph in the No. 27 NAPA Auto Parts Honda. Rossi was followed by Gabby Chaves at 219.064 mph in the No. 88 Harding Group Chevrolet.
Scott Dixon, a four-time Verizon IndyCar Series champion, was the last driver over 219 mph at 219.005 mph in the No. 9 PNC Bank Chip Ganassi Racing Honda. Dixon won the first half of the Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix last Saturday on The Raceway at Belle Isle Park.
The session began with an INDYCAR-mandated 30-minute session to scuff-in tires. Teams were instructed to scuff-in four sets of Firestone Firehawk rubber before being cleared to run all-out for the final hour. Firestone Racing has brought more than 1,300 race tires to Fort Worth for the 22 entered teams. Each entry will receive 13 sets of Firehawk tires.
U.S. Concrete Qualifying Day for the open-wheel series is set for 3 p.m. (CT). Saturday’s edition of “America’s Original Nighttime IndyCar Series Race” — set for 248 laps/372 miles — will be televised on NBC Sports Network beginning at 7 p.m. (CT).