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Allmendinger tops wet practice

AJ Allmendinger set the pace in a rain-hit first practice session at Surfers Paradise on Friday morning, guiding his RuSPORT Lola around the 2.795-mile street circuit in 1:41.542

Intermittent showers jumbled the order and threw up an unfamiliar leaderboard at the end of the one hour and 15 minutes of running.

Unheralded Australian rookie Marcus Marshall gave the locals something to cheer by setting the second quickest time ahead of rookie points leader Timo Glock (Rocketsports), Mario Dominguez (Forsythe Racing) and Rodolfo Lavin (HVM).

Another Aussie, Will Power, acquitted himself well in his first Champ Car session and posted the sixth best time. Fellow debutant Michael McDowell was ninth in the second Rocketsports entry.

Several drivers took unscheduled trips into run-off areas, including champion-elect Sebastien Bourdais, Alex Tagliani, Andrew Ranger, McDowell and Power, but none caused any serious damage to their cars.

Pos  Driver              Team                   Time              Laps
 1.  A.J. Allmendinger   RuSPORT                1:41.542          11
 2.  Marcus Marshall     Team Australia         1:42.473 + 0.931  12
 3.  Timo Glock          Rocketsports           1:43.056 + 1.514  19
 4.  Mario Dominguez     Forsythe Championship  1:46.183 + 4.641   6
 5.  Rodolfo Lavin       HVM, Inc.              1:46.276 + 4.734  14
 6.  Will Power          Team Australia         1:46.999 + 5.457  14
 7.  Ricardo Sperafico   Dale Coyne             1:47.936 + 6.394  11
 8.  Cristiano da Matta  PKV                    1:48.237 + 6.695   5
 9.  Michael McDowell    Rocketsports           1:48.488 + 6.946  21
10.  Oriol Servia        Newman Haas            1:48.680 + 7.138   4
11.  Paul Tracy          Forsythe Championship  1:49.788 + 8.246   6
12.  Alex Tagliani       Team Australia Racing  1:51.567 +10.025   9
13.  Justin Wilson       RuSPORT                1:51.642 +10.100  15
14.  Nelson Philippe     Mi-Jack Conquest       1:52.896 +11.354   8
15.  Ronnie Bremer       Dale Coyne             1:53.202 +11.660  21
16.  Jimmy Vasser        PKV                    1:56.155 +14.613   8
17.  Sebastien Bourdais  Newman Haas            1:56.657 +15.115   5
18.  Andrew Ranger       Mi-Jack Conquest       1:57.879 +16.337  14
19.  Fabrizio del Monte  HVM, Inc.              1:58.687 +17.145  18

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