Sebastien Bourdais

Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio Practice 1 results

LEXINGTON, Ohio -- Sebastien Bourdais, who earned the Verizon P1 Award for the Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio last August, started strong in the initial practice on the 2.258-mile, 13-turn road course by posting the quickest lap of the 75-minute session.

Bourdais, a two-time winner this season, had a best lap of 1 minute, 06.2034 seconds (122.785 mph) in the No. 11 Team Hydroxycut-KVSH Racing Chevrolet, which is less than a second off the track qualifying record set by Dario Franchitti in 1999 and matched by Gil de Ferran in 2000.

Twenty-two of the 24 entries were separated by less than a second.

"Last year we had a really good car. We qualified on the pole and put ourselves in a position to win, but Scott (Dixon) was just too strong," Bourdais said. "Qualifying is key to having a good race at Mid-Ohio because it is difficult to overtake. There are a couple of places you can do it -- Turn 3 in the back stretch and Turn 2 -- but being up front, like anywhere, always makes things easier."

Reigning Verizon IndyCar Series champion Will Power was second in the No. 1 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet (1:06.3658) and Josef Newgarden in the No. 67 Hartman Oil CFH Racing Chevrolet was third (1:06.3823). Takuma Sato, who this weekend will mark his 100th Indy car start, was fourth (1:06.3944) and AJ Foyt Racing teammate Jack Hawksworth was fifth (1:06.4845) in the No. 41 ABC Supply Honda.

Championship front-runner Juan Pablo Montoya of Team Penske takes a 42-point lead over Graham Rahal into the 90-lap race Aug. 2 (1:30 p.m. ET on CNBC). Fifty-one points separate second and eighth-place Newgarden with three races left. Montoya turned a field-low 12 laps in the No. 2 Hawk Performance Chevrolet because of an alternator issue.

A second practice is scheduled for 3:15 p.m. ET. Watch is on