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Hunter-Reay tops mid-week open test at Mid-Ohio

Ryan Hunter-Reay came away with the top time from the Wednesday open test at Mid-Ohio, which also saw Luca Filippi and James Davison join the IndyCar Series regulars in action.
Reigning IZOD IndyCar Series champion Ryan Hunter-Reay topped the times after a full day of open testing at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course on Wednesday, posting a final lap of 1:05.6358s (123.847mph) in the #1 Andretti Autosport car on the 13-turn, 2.258-mile permanent road course to go clear of Schmidt-Hamilton Motorsport's Simon Pagenaud by 0.1607s.

"It was a good day," said Hunter-Reay afterwards. "Made some major gains and we're pretty happy with the car. This track is similar to Barber and we've been quick on the big natural terrain road courses.

"Mid-Ohio has a flow to it that no other racetrack has," he elaborated. "It has high-speed corners - we're using fourth gear at 140 mph through Turn 1 and doing probably 4Gs through there - and it just gives you that reward. It's a track that when you get it right it's so rewarding because you're hanging it out on the edge and you can feel the risk is there.

"It has elevation changes, braking zones, fast corners; it has everything you'd want in a racetrack," he continued. "This is one of my favourite racetracks, and you always have to be a student of the game. You have to over-analyse every bit. You have to constantly be digging to find the place in your driving style to put it all together."

Will Power was looking pacy on Wednesday and ended up with the third-fastest time only two hundredths off the back of Pagenaud, while Helio Castroneves was a similar margin off the back of Dragon Racing's Sebastien Bourdais after the Frenchman managed to set the fourth fastest time and split the two Penske team mates by the end of the day's activity.

"It was a good day," said Power. "This track takes rubber all day and with that becomes quicker and quicker. The team made great changes to the car and we will continue to work on it during practice on Friday and see if we can improve. Overall, I'm happy with the day and look forward to the rest of the week."

"We got a bit of a late start due to the rain this morning," explained Castroneves. "But we were able to use the entire afternoon session to test a few things for the race this weekend. I am happy with the set-up of the car and the track seems to be getting faster and faster every time we went out.

"Today gave us a good gauge as to where we are and I'm excited to get back behind the wheel on Friday," he added.

Certainly Hunter-Reay seems to think that the duo will be among the biggest threats this weekend: "I expect the Penske and Ganassi boys to be right up there on Friday," he said. "It's going to be super-tight as it always is here. Hopefully, the #1 DHL Chevy can stay up front."

Ganassi's Scott Dixon is coming off three back-to-back wins in July (at Pocono and by sweeping the Toronto double-header) and is keen to keep the momentum rolling.




Related Pictures

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James Davison taking part in the open test session with Dale Coyne Racing at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course on Wednesday, July 31 2013. (Photo Credit: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Luca Filippi taking part in the open test session with Barracuda Racing/Bryan Herta Autosport at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course on Wednesday, July 31 2013. (Photo Credit: John Cote for IndyCar Media)
Teams at work in the pit lane in overcast conditions for the open test session at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course on Wednesday, July 31 2013. (Photo Credit: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Luca Filippi taking part in the open test session with Barracuda Racing/Bryan Herta Autosport at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course on Wednesday, July 31 2013. (Photo Credit: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Ryan Hunter-Reay on his way to topping the times in the open test session with Andretti Autosport at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course on Wednesday, July 31 2013. (Photo Credit: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
Will Power celebrates with his team after winning the 2014 Verizon IndyCar Series championship (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Will Power celebrates with his team owner Roger Penske after winning the 2014 Verizon IndyCar Series championship (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Will Power celebrates with his wife Liz after winning the 2014 Verizon IndyCar Series championship (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Will Power celebrates winning the 2014 Verizon IndyCar Series championship (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Will Power celebrates winning the 2014 Verizon IndyCar Series championship (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Will Power celebrates winning the 2014 Verizon IndyCar Series championship (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Will Power celebrates winning the 2014 Verizon IndyCar Series championship (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Will Power celebrates winning the 2014 Verizon IndyCar Series championship (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Tony Kanaan, driver of the #10 Target Chip Ganassi Chevrolet IndyCar V6, races to victory Saturday, August 30, 2014 during the last Verizon IndyCar Series race of the season at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. This is the third consecutive win for Chevrolet at Auto Club Speedway. Chevrolet wins the Manufacturer`s Championship for the third straight season. (Photo by Gregg Ellman/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Team Chevy sweeps the podium as Tony Kanaan (center), driver of the #10 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet IndyCar V6, celebrates his victory Saturday, August 30, 2014, during the last Verizon IndyCar Series race of the season at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. Teammate Scott Dixon (left), driver of the #9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet V6, finishes second, and Ed Carpenter, driver of the #20 Fuzzy`s Ultra Premium Vodka/Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet V6, finishes third. Chevrolet wins the Manufacturer`s Championship for the third straight season. (Photo by Gregg EllmanLAT for Chevy Racing)
Tony Kanaan, driver of the #10 Target Chip Ganassi Chevrolet IndyCar V6, takes the chequered flag while racing to victory Saturday, August 30, 2014 during the last Verizon IndyCar Series race of the season at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. This is the third consecutive win for Chevrolet at Auto Club Speedway. Chevrolet wins the Manufacturer`s Championship for the third straight season. (Photo by Michael L. Levitt/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Tony Kanaan, driver of the #10 Target Chip Ganassi Chevrolet IndyCar V6, makes a quick pit stop while racing to victory Saturday, August 30, 2014 during the last Verizon IndyCar Series race of the season at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. This is the third consecutive win for Chevrolet at Auto Club Speedway. Chevrolet wins the Manufacturer`s Championship for the third straight season. (Photo by Brian Cleary/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Will Power, driver of the #12 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet IndyCar V6, celebrates winning the 2014 Verizon IndyCar Series Championship by posing with the Astor Challenge Cup Saturday, August 30, 2014 after the last race of the season at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. Chevrolet clinches its third straight Manufacturer`s Championship. (Photo by Michael L. Levitt/LAT for Chevy Racing)

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