Penske blitzes final Edmonton session
|By Matt Beer||Saturday, July 24th 2010, 17:21 GMT|
Helio Castroneves led the way in another Penske clean sweep in final free practice session before IndyCar qualifying at Edmonton.
The Brazilian took first place ahead of championship leader and Friday pacesetter Will Power, who he had deposed with a 1m01.9802s lap just over halfway through the morning.
Both improved during a final minute burst following a late yellow, but Castroneves was able to maintain his lead with a time of 1m01.6642s, ahead of Power and Penske's third driver Ryan Briscoe as the team filled the top three positions for a second straight session.
Hideki Mutoh (Newman/Haas) bounced back from a highly disappointing Friday to set the fourth-fastest time, ahead of Ganassi's Scott Dixon and another good run for Paul Tracy (KV) in sixth. Justin Wilson repeated his Friday seventh place for Dreyer & Reinbold.
Andretti Autosport duo Tony Kanaan and Marco Andretti were next up, with rookies Takuma Sato (KV) and Mario Romancini (Conquest) ending up 10th and 11th - but having both been as high as second earlier.
The session saw plenty of spins, but no damage as drivers made the most of the wide airport expanses. Dixon, Wilson and Foyt driver Vitor Meira all got away with high-speed rotations without interrupting the session. But KV pair Sato and EJ Viso both prompted yellows - Sato twice stalling after spins, and Viso nosing into the Turn 7 tyres (without any obvious damage to his car).
There was also a stoppage when the entire Canadian contingent - Alex Tagliani and Tracy - had unrelated spins at Turn 1 without a few seconds of each other. Tracy's incident saw him only just miss Bertrand Baguette as the Conquest car came out of the pits.
Pos Driver Team Time Gap 1. Helio Castroneves Penske 1m01.6642s 2. Will Power Penske 1m01.7342s + 0.0699s 3. Ryan Briscoe Penske 1m01.9521s + 0.2878s 4. Hideki Mutoh Newman/Haas 1m02.2237s + 0.5594s 5. Scott Dixon Ganassi 1m02.2413s + 0.5771s 6. Paul Tracy KV 1m02.2736s + 0.6094s 7. Justin Wilson Dreyer & Reinbold 1m02.3631s + 0.6988s 8. Tony Kanaan Andretti 1m02.3943s + 0.7301s 9. Marco Andretti Andretti 1m02.3992s + 0.7350s 10. Takuma Sato KV 1m02.4757s + 0.8114s 11. Mario Romancini Conquest 1m02.4951s + 0.8308s 12. Ryan Hunter-Reay Andretti 1m02.5061s + 0.8419s 13. Dario Franchitti Ganassi 1m02.5773s + 0.9130s 14. Raphael Matos De Ferran Dragon 1m02.6706s + 1.0063s 15. Mario Moraes KV 1m02.7890s + 1.1247s 16. EJ Viso KV 1m02.8706s + 1.2064s 17. Simona de Silvestro HVM 1m02.9055s + 1.2412s 18. Alex Lloyd Dale Coyne 1m02.9634s + 1.2991s 19. Dan Wheldon Panther 1m03.0208s + 1.3565s 20. Bertrand Baguette Conquest 1m03.0544s + 1.3901s 21. Tomas Scheckter Dreyer & Reinbold 1m03.1225s + 1.4583s 22. Danica Patrick Andretti 1m03.2518s + 1.5876s 23. Vitor Meira AJ Foyt 1m03.3344s + 1.6702s 24. Alex Tagliani Fazzt 1m03.3539s + 1.6897s 25. Milka Duno Dale Coyne 1m07.9345s + 6.2702s