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Allmendinger, 2 other Indy rookies get most out of 1st laps at Indianapolis 500 practice

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    Dario Franchitti, of Scotland, climbs into his car before the start of practice for the IndyCar Indianapolis 500 auto race on opening day at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis, Saturday, May 11, 2013. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings) (The Associated Press)

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    Josef Newgarden prepares to drive as he waits for the track to open on the opening day of practice for the IndyCar Indianapolis 500 auto race on opening day at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis, Saturday, May 11, 2013. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings) (The Associated Press)

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    Scott Dixon, of New Zealand, talks with members of his crew as they wait for the track to open on the opening day of practice for the IndyCar Indianapolis 500 auto race on opening day at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis, Saturday, May 11, 2013. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings) (The Associated Press)

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    IndyCar driver Carlos Munoz, of Colombia, sits on the pit wall as he waits to drive on the opening day of practice for the Indianapolis 500 auto race at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis, Saturday, May 11, 2013. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings) (The Associated Press)

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    In this image shot with a fisheye lens, Helio Castroneves, of Brazil, stands in the pits during a break on the opening day of practice for the IndyCar Indianapolis 500 auto race at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis, Saturday, May 11, 2013. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings) (The Associated Press)

AJ Allmendinger spent the first few laps Saturday getting acclimated to his new car at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

He spent the next hour finding speed. The IndyCar rookie can't wait to see what's next.

For a driver who has competed around the world in various racing series, the opening day of Indianapolis 500 practice seemed more like a dream than reality. It took roughly an hour for Allmendinger to pass all three phases of the rookie orientation program, topping out with a fast lap of 219.239 mph on a breezy, unseasonably chilly day.

The weather conditions led to slower speeds and fewer laps than expected on the 2.5-mile oval.

But all that mattered to Allmendinger was that he was getting a second chance.