Team Penske’s Josef Newgarden, Will Power and Simon Pagenaud were the pace setters on the opening day of action at the Circuit Of The Americas in Austin Texas ahead of Sunday’s inaugural IndyCar Classic.

Josef Newgarden in the No.2 PPG Chevrolet led the opening session and speaking following the action he said:

The day was OK. We lost a little bit in Practice 2 and we didn’t put up a very good lap on reds (Firestone alternate tires). We look strong on blacks (Firestone primary tires), but we just need to look at the data tonight, especially if we get that rain tomorrow. Overall, I feel good. The PPG Dallara/Chevrolet feels comfy and we need to make sure we execute tomorrow.”

Will Power in the No.12 Verizon Chevrolet ended the second practice session in first and speaking following the day’s action he said:

“Turn 19 is obviously just interesting. You have to use the rule to be fast. The rest, it’s a difficult track. Very technical. Hard to get the car right. I felt like we got in a pretty good window that session. Felt like we found where we need to be.” (About the importance of track time at a new venue): “Yeah, it’s funny. You can do all these miles in testing, come back, and it’s different for the race. You get the basics down, get some good data and such to go away and think about it. Definitely running a different package to what I ran at the test. So, yeah, we’ll just keep massaging on it. It’s going to be tight, it always is. I think the weather looks pretty good actually. We will have a nice weekend.”

Simon Pagenaud in the No.22 Menards Chevrolet was fastest in the warm up and he commented following the track activity saying:

I’m really excited. The Menards Chevrolet is driving well. The whole team is doing awesome – Team Penske, these guys just never stop digging. We are working on different things. We tried a setup on the red (Firestone alternate) tires that I didn’t like. We put it back to a normal setup and getting back to normal. I think we will be in good shape tomorrow. The car feels really nice. This is a fun track.”

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