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Simon Pagenaud tops second practice at Long Beach Grand Prix

Simon Pagenaud tops second practice at Long Beach Grand Prix
IndyCar racer Simon Pagenaud stops in the pits during practice Friday for the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach this weekend. (Kelvin Kuo / Associated Press)

Two French drivers topped the speed charts in Friday's second practice for the Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach, the second race of the season in the Verizon IndyCar Series.

Simon Pagenaud turned the fastest lap at 102.457 mph at the 1.97-mile, 11-turn course on the city's seaside streets.

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Three-time Long Beach winner Sebastien Bourdais was second with a speed of 102.440 mph.

They were followed by rookie Jack Hawksworth, defending Long Beach winner Takuma Sato and two-time Long Beach winner Will Power.

But the entire field was exceptionally close, with the top 19 drivers separated by one second or less.

James Hinchcliffe had the fastest lap in the first practice Friday at 101.485 mph. He was followed by Helio Castroneves, Justin Wilson and Ryan Hunter-Reay.

Qualifying is Saturday to set the 23-car starting grid for Sunday's race.

In qualifying for the pro/celebrity race Saturday, former NASCAR driver Kyle Petty and actor Brett Davern won the top two starting spots. That field races in identical Scions.

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