Patrick heads opening Vegas practice
13 October 2011 – Danica Patrick has topped Thursday’s first practice session for this weekend’s IndyCar Series finale in Las Vegas. Behind the Andretti Autosport car, championship rivals Dario Franchitti and Will Power managed respective ninth and 14th places.
Despite being one of the final drivers to hit the track, Patrick topped the timesheets with a best effort of 24.735 seconds, with Oriol Servia of Newman/Haas and the second Andretti car of Ryan Hunter-Reay both within one tenth of the best effort.
It was a promising session for all four Andretti machines, with the rapid pace being confirmed by fifth and seventh-placed Mike Conway and Marco Andretti, with Scott Dixon and Helio Castroneves filling in the gaps for Ganassi and Penske.
In the cases of the title contenders, reigning double Champion Franchitti was just one tenth of a second off the pace, with Power a further tenth behind.
The session was not without its dramas, as a full-course caution period lasted for the best part of half an hour after fluid leaked from E.J. Viso’s KV Racing car.
Second practice begins at 12:30pm local time (BST -6) on Friday