Tuesday's Indy Lights practice session at the Miami-Dade Homestead Motorpsorts Complex kicked off the quest for the 1998 title, which will take competitors on a 14-race championship across the United States and Canada. This weekend's event includes five days of activities. Testing continues tomorrow with the official practice beginning on Friday. Saturday will be headlined by single- car qualifying for the 100-mile (67 laps) opening race scheduled to start at 11:00 a.m. on Sunday, March 15. Mears, a two-time 1997 oval track winner (Milwaukee and California), was the fastest driver on the Homestead track all day. In the morning session, he topped all with a lap just over 30 seconds. He set the day's fast time in the afternoon session. Series veteran Chris Simmons recorded the second-best speed of the day, at 180.006 mph (30.039 seconds) in his Alco Capital Group/Nassi Group Lola prepared his new team Mattco Raceworks. Shigeaki Hattori of Japan was third fastest in the Epson Lola, followed by Clint Mears' cousin Casey Mears in the second Penske Auto Center/Mobil 1/ARE entry. The only rookie among the top five today was Oriol Servia of Catalonia in the Catalonia/Elf/Heritage Bank Lola. Servia's speed of 179.171 mph (30.179 seconds) was the fifth fastest of the day. Hattori and Casey Mears turned laps of 30.110 seconds and 30.173 seconds, respectively. Twenty-one of the 23 drivers participating today recorded speeds greater than the track record of 174.809 mph set last year by Helio Castro Neves. Tuesday's on-track action included three incidents, but no injuries. Brian Stewart Racing's Mattias Andersson avoided wall contact in a spin in the morning session, but both Rodolfo Lavin and Stewart's second driver Sergio Paese hit the wall on Tuesday afternoon. Both contact incidents took place in the Turn Two area. Source: www.indylights.com PPG-Dayton Indy Lights Championship