Simon Pagenaud, driver of the No. 77 Schmidt Hamilton HP Motorsports Dallara/Honda/Firestone car, ended the first day of practice for Sunday’s Edmonton Indy race with the fourth-fastest lap on the combined timing sheet.

He was P1 in the morning IZOD IndyCar Series practice with a time and speed that would have put him on the pole for the 2011 Edmonton Indy. In the afternoon practice session, Pagenaud finished P12 but was not concerned with his fall on the time sheet.

“The HP car is awesome, I mean it’s really good,” Pagenaud said. “We just couldn’t get a clear lap in the second session. We just were in the wrong place at the wrong time. It’s OK. That’s not what’s important. What’s important is that we’re happy with the car. We tried a lot of different things today, so I feel very confident in tomorrow.”

The day wasn’t without a dose of drama. When Pagenaud climbed from the HP car after the morning session, the left elbow of his uniform was soaked in blood.

“It (blood) is the result of a little bit of rubbing,” Pagenaud said. “It’s a tough track here. There is a lot of kickback in the steering wheel. When that happens, my elbow rubs against the tub, which is carbon. It gets really warm, and with all the rubbing, it started to bleed. It’s nothing really.”

See video: http://twitvid.com/HDAG3

There is one more practice Saturday before Firestone Fast Six qualifying at 1 p.m MT./3 p.m. ET.

The 75-lap Edmonton Indy is Sunday at 12:45 MT/2:45 ET.