Sports

Will Power paces IndyCar field at St. Pete as series returns after long winter layoff

  • Will Power, of Australia, talks to crew members after practice for the IndyCar Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg auto race Friday, March 27, 2015, in St. Petersburg, Fla. The race takes place on Sunday. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)

    Will Power, of Australia, talks to crew members after practice for the IndyCar Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg auto race Friday, March 27, 2015, in St. Petersburg, Fla. The race takes place on Sunday. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)  (The Associated Press)

  • Will Power, of Australia, drives his car into turn 10 during practice for the IndyCar Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg auto race Friday, March 27, 2015, in St. Petersburg, Fla. Power had the fastest time during the session. The race takes place on Sunday. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)

    Will Power, of Australia, drives his car into turn 10 during practice for the IndyCar Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg auto race Friday, March 27, 2015, in St. Petersburg, Fla. Power had the fastest time during the session. The race takes place on Sunday. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)  (The Associated Press)

  • Simona de Silvestro, of Switzerland, walks to her car before practice for the IndyCar Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg auto race Friday, March 27, 2015, in St. Petersburg, Fla. The race takes place on Sunday. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)

    Simona de Silvestro, of Switzerland, walks to her car before practice for the IndyCar Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg auto race Friday, March 27, 2015, in St. Petersburg, Fla. The race takes place on Sunday. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara)  (The Associated Press)

Will Power shook off a six-month layoff by pacing the opening practice of the IndyCar season.

The defending series champion wasted no time shooting to the top of the leaderboard as he weaved through the streets of St. Petersburg, site of Sunday's season-opening race.

Power's title run began on this 1.8-mile, 14-turn temporary street circuit with a win in last year's opener.

It was the first of three wins for the Australian, who finally broke through with his first series championship after losing three consecutive titles from 2010 through 2012.

Now that he has his crown, Power is determined not to let up one bit.