DETROIT --Alex Tagliani topped the time sheet in the practice session preceding qualifications for Race 1 of the Chevrolet Indy Dual in Detroit presented by Quicken Loans.
Tagliani, who started third in the IZOD IndyCar Series race on Belle Isle last June, recorded a best lap of 1 minute, 18.2096 seconds on the 2.34-mile, 13-turn street circuit. Scott Dixon, the race winner last year on the 2.07-mile course in the No. 9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing car, was .1072 of a second back.
"With only one practice session and qualifying coming up, it's very important for us to roll out of the truck fast," Tagliani said. "I'm really happy and the Barracuda Racing boys did a fantastic job. If we get a bit of luck, this team is definitely capable of getting on the podium. That's what we need to aim for."
Josef Newgarden was third (1:18.5118) was third in the No. 67 Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing car. The top three were powered by Honda. Ryan Hunter-Reay and Will Power also were in the top five, which was separated by less than four-tenths of a second. Ryan Briscoe, who replaced JR Hildebrand for this weekend in the No. 4 National Guard Panther Racing car, was 20th overall.
Click it: Practice 1 results || Race 1 qualifying groups
The 75-minute session played a role in the qualifications procedures (9:15 a.m. ET June 1) for Race 2 (3:30 p.m. June 2 on ABC) of the inaugural IZOD IndyCar Series doubleheader.
All cars will participate in one of two groups for 12 minutes each, with five minutes of guaranteed green-flag time. Group 1 will consist of odd-numbered positions on the practice time sheet, while even-numbered positions will comprise Group 2.
• The pole position will be award to the best overall lap time in the qualifying sessions.
• The remainder of the cars in the pole sitter’s group will occupy the odd-numbered starting grid positions, starting with third.
• Cars in the other group will occupy the even-numbered starting grid positions, starting with second.
• One point will be awarded to the driver and entrant with the quickest time in Group 1 and Group 2.
Qualifications (3 p.m. ET May 31) for Race 1 will follow the format used for all other road/street courses – three segments, including the Firestone Fast Six, to determine the Verizon P1 Award.
• All cars will participate in one of two groups for 10 minutes, including full-course caution periods. Group 2 starts five minutes after the checkered flag flies for Group 1.
• The six quickest cars from each group advance to Segment 2.
• Cars that fail to advance to Segment 2 will fill positions 13 through the end of the starting grid based on their best lap time in Segment 1. Group 1 participants will occupy odd-numbered grid positions starting with 13th; Group 2 participants will occupy even-numbered grid positions starting with 14th.
• All 12 cars that earned a spot in Segment 2 will participate in one group for 10 minutes, including full-course caution periods. All times from Segment 1 are voided.
• The six quickest cars advance to the Firestone Fast Six.
Firestone Fast Six:
• The Firestone Fast Six starts 10 minutes after the checkered flag flies for Segment 2.
Note: Any 10-grid spot penalties for unapproved engine changes will be applied to the race day starting lineup.
• All six cars that earned a spot in the Firestone Fast Six will participate in one group for 10 minutes, with at least five minutes of guaranteed green-flag time. All times from Segment 2 are voided.
• The driver who posts the quickest lap time earns the Verizon P1 Award as pole winner. The remaining cars line up second through sixth on the starting grid based on their best time during the Firestone Fast Six.
• One point will be awarded to the driver and entrant that earn the pole position.