The last weekend of the IndyCar season is off to a slow start. The first practice session mainly featured cars sitting on pit road. Helios Castroneves led the session, running only 4 laps. Scott Dixon was near the bottom, doing a few very slow laps early, then going out near the end but only getting to eighteenth place.
The second round of practice had more action. It was another clean session until Conor Daly lost an engine with about ten minutes to go heading toward the hairpin. After a brief halt practice resumed but ended quickly when Alexander Rossi suddenly stopped just past the start/finish line. Castroneves again led the session, followed by his Penske teammates who are fighting for the title.
While Hondas were strong in the morning, Ryan Hunter-Reay was the only one in the top five in the afternoon.
I don’t think much was learned today about how the weekend will go. Tomorrow morning’s practice should tell us a lot. Someone other than Power or Pagenaud winning the pole is in Pagenaud’s favor. Power needs every point he can get.
The new scoring pylon, a four sided digital screen, is great. Much more readable than the old pylon.
It was a decent Friday crowd, maybe slightly better than last year.
I was thinking today that a spotter guide will be a required item at St. Pete next March. There are almost as many possible combinations for 2017 as there scenarios f o r who will. win the championship.
I had a great day seeing friends, some who I will not see again until next year.