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Sato leads IndyCar warm-up at Long Beach

Apr 21, 2013, 12:37 PM EDT

Takuma Sato AP

A.J. Foyt Racing’s Takuma Sato led the final warmup session before today’s Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach (4 p.m. ET, NBC Sports Network), topping the 30-minute block with a lap of 1 minute, 8.5388 seconds around the 1.97-mile street circuit.

Sato, who will start on the outside of Row 2 for the 80-lap race later this afternoon, was one of three Honda-powered drivers in the Top 5 for the session; the others being Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing’s Josef Newgarden in second (1 minute, 8.5409 seconds) and Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing’s Graham Rahal in fifth (1 minute, 8.7616 seconds).

E.J. Viso and Ryan Hunter-Reay, both from Andretti Autosport and Chevrolet-powered, were third and fourth-quickest respectively. As for pole sitter Dario Franchitti of Target Chip Ganassi Racing, he was eighth-fastest in the warmup with a time of 1 minute, 8.8859 seconds.

The session featured a brief red flag period involving Simon Pagenaud (starting 17th), who spun his No. 77 Schmidt Hamilton Motorsports Honda between Turns 7 and 8 in the opening moments. The Frenchman had one more spin in the warmup before coming away 20th on the time sheets.

Watch today’s Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach online or on your mobile device.

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