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Penske pair top final practice

Team Penske moved to the top of the speed charts in the final practice session at Homestead

Helio Castroneves lapped in 24.5736 seconds in the final moments of the session, pushing his team-mate Sam Hornish Jr down to second.

Ganassi's Scott Dixon was third, but Dan Wheldon was only ninth after running out of fuel. Fernandez Racing's Scott Sharp had the same problem right at the end of practice.

Rahal-Letterman Racing's now unique Panoz chassis seemed to be off the pace on Friday, but the team bounced back this morning, with all three cars in the top five at one point.

Tomas Scheckter and Dario Franchitti's late improvements knocked the Rahal trio down to sixth, seventh and eighth.

Panther Racing prepared their back-up car for Vitor Meira this morning after the Brazilian's crash in second practice. He was 19th quickest.

Although Ganassi and Penske have held the advantage in both testing and practice, it is possible that this afternoon's qualifying session will show a different picture. With the cars running one at a time in qualifying, they will no longer be able to boost their speed by slipstreaming rivals.

Practice three times from Homestead:

Pos  Driver             Team               Chassis  Time
 1.  Helio Castroneves  Penske             Dallara  24.5736
 2.  Sam Hornish Jr     Penske             Dallara  24.5859
 3.  Scott Dixon        Ganassi            Dallara  24.7264
 4.  Tomas Scheckter    Vision             Dallara  24.7431
 5.  Dario Franchitti   Andretti-Green     Dallara  24.7694
 6.  Buddy Rice         Rahal-Letterman    Panoz    24.8157
 7.  Danica Patrick     Rahal-Letterman    Panoz    24.8742
 8.  Paul Dana          Rahal-Letterman    Panoz    24.8886
 9.  Dan Wheldon        Ganassi            Dallara  24.8891
10.  Eddie Cheever Jr   Cheever            Dallara  24.9090
11.  Tony Kanaan        Andretti-Green     Dallara  24.9152
12.  Kosuke Matsuura    Fernandez          Dallara  24.9392
13.  Marco Andretti     Andretti-Green     Dallara  24.9475
14.  Bryan Herta        Andretti-Green     Dallara  24.9485
15.  Scott Sharp        Fernandez          Dallara  24.9550
16.  Ed Carpenter       Vision             Dallara  24.9873
17.  Felipe Giaffone    Foyt               Dallara  24.9912
18.  Buddy Lazier       Dreyer & Reinbold  Dallara  25.0987
19.  Vitor Meira        Panther            Dallara  25.1801
20.  PJ Chesson         Hemelgarn          Dallara  25.2938

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