Wickens, Kanaan lead opening IndyCar Texas practice

Image by Marshall Pruett

Wickens, Kanaan lead opening IndyCar Texas practice


Wickens, Kanaan lead opening IndyCar Texas practice


Tony Kanaan and Robert Wickens turned the only laps of 220mph to lead the way in Friday’s first, steamy practice period at Texas Motor Speedway.

Kanaan and Wickens had identical laps of 220.014mph in the 90-minute session, which was run in 95-degree temperatures.

Set to make his 292nd consecutive start in Saturday night’s DXC Technology 600, Kanaan continued his oval-track pace from Indianapolis in his ABC Supply Chevy for AJ Foyt Racing.

Wickens, the Canadian rookie who sits sixth in the Verizon IndyCar series points, matched TK’s lap in his Schmidt Peterson Local Oil Honda late in a practice period that began with all teams scrubbing four sets of tires to prepare for the expected torrid temps.

Sebastien Bourdais, Alexander Rossi, Gabby Chaves and Scott Dixon all topped 219mph, while Marco Andretti and Josef Newgarden both topped 218mph. Dixon was fastest without a tow at 218.588mph.

Last week’s Dual 2 winner Ryan Hunter-Reay was bothered by some mechanical gremlins and was 18th with only 39 laps. Max Chilton’s track time was limited by throttle-linkage problems, while Zachary Claman de Melo required a tow-in after his car stopped at Turn 3 half an hour into the session.

Qualifying is set for 3 p.m. local time (4 p.m. ET) and will be shown live on NBCSN.