ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – Team Penske got off to a fast start in the 2013 IZOD IndyCar Series season Friday as the team posted two of the six fastest laps during practice for the Honda Grand Prix of St. Petersburg.
Meanwhile, Helio Castroneves recorded the sixth-fastest lap, clocking in at 61.7853, in the No. 3 Hitachi Team Penske Dallara/Chevrolet.
“We are still fighting to find the right balance handling-wise on the Verizon car,” said Power, who has captured the last three poles in St. Pete. “We put a good lap in there early but we weren’t that good on older tires so we have a bit of work to do.”
Both Power and Castroneves are formers winners on the streets of St. Petersburg with Power claiming the checkered flag in 2010 and Castroneves with three victories in 2006, 2007 and last season.
“It was a great day for the Hitachi Chevrolet. We were able to find some speed and improve the car from the first session to the second,” said Castroneves, who also won the St. Pete pole in 2007.
“The Team Penske guys did a great job as always so we feel good for tomorrow and hopefully the weather holds up so that we can keep getting better.”
The two Penske drivers will be among the 25 battling for the pole position at the season opener when qualifying begins Saturday at 2:05 p.m. ET. NBC Sports Network’s qualifying coverage will begin at 2:30 p.m. ET.
Sunday’s Grand Prix of St. Petersburg will be televised live beginning at 12 p.m. ET on NBC Sports Network.
Team Penske Dallara/Chevrolet