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Dixon fastest in latest IndyCar oval test at Texas

Scott DixonScott Dixon set the pace at the latest IndyCar oval test at Texas Speedway on Monday.

The two-time series champion led a 1-2-3 on the timesheets for the Ganassi squad as he took his Honda-powered Dallara around the track in 24.664s on what was the DW12's first outing at a 1.5-mile high-banked oval

"For the first time coming here, you're open-minded as you try to figure out what the car's going to be like, and until you get through the first couple of runs you're not sure what to expect," said Dixon, who completed 104 laps and set his best time in the morning session.

"The cars have a range of options, which I was pleasantly surprised with. Instead of coming here with a 10-degree rear flap that created more pack racing and [restricted] strategies, there are options. It will be difficult to drive for a race stint, which I think is good.

"Having the car in a situation where you can take a lot of downforce off is pretty difficult and qualifying could actually be difficult for a change. At Texas, that's pretty big."

Charlie Kimball was second fastest, 0.121s slower than Dixon, while defending series champion Dario Franchitti was third.

Championship leader Will Power was fourth and best of the Chevrolet-powered Penske drivers in fourth, three spots ahead of his team-mate Helio Castroneves. Between them were Ed Carpenter (Carpenter) and Graham Rahal (Ganassi).

Penske's Ryan Briscoe and Foyt duo Mike Conway and Wade Cunningham completed the top 10 while KV Racing's Rubens Barrichello was 11th fastest on what was his first time driving on an oval.

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