Franchitti leads practice for Firestone 550

FORT WORTH, Texas-- Dario Franchitti finished with the fastest lap, clocking 214.724 mph, in the practice round of the IZOD IndyCar Series Firestone 550 at Texas Motor Speedway on Friday.

Franchitti, who is currently in fourth place in the Series, will be driving his No. 10 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Honda in IndyCar’s first return to a high-banked oval track since Dan Wheldon’s tragic death in Las Vegas last October.

Rounding out the top five were No. 9 Scott Dixon (214.274 mph), rookie No. 67 Josef Newgarden (214.146 mph), No. 98 Alex Tagliani (213.965 mph), and No. 11 Tony Kanaan (213.600 mph).

IndyCar Series leader Will Power (12) had the 18th fastest lap at 211.974 mph.

Some other notable drivers’ times included:

  • No. 28 Ryan Hunter-Reay, 213.505 mph (sixth place)

  • Rookie No. 77 Simon Pagenaud, 213.396 mph (eighth place)

  • No. 27 James Hinchcliffe, 213.189 mph (ninth place)

  • No. 2 Ryan Briscoe, 213.006 mph (11th place)

  • No. 14 Mike Conway, 212.916 mph (12th place)

  • No. 3 Helio Castroneves, 211.759 mph (19th place)

  • No. 4 JR Hildebrand, 211.732 mph (20th place)

  • No. 26 Marco Andretti, 211.373 mph (21st place)

IZOD IndyCar Series qualifying begins at 4:00 p.m. CST at TMS.