ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) -- The first accident of the IndyCar season happened before a car even hit the track: A sanitation truck backed into Chip Ganassi's hospitality tent in the paddock.
The tent was crumpled and taken down after the accident. The driver of the truck was taken to a hospital to be treated for a rib injury, but there were no other injuries.
The Ganassi group had the tent back up before Friday's first practice. They used poles from a backup awning to replace the supports that had been damaged in the crash, and did their best to reassemble the tent despite tears to the fabric.
IndyCar allows teams to assemble hospitality areas in the paddock to entertain sponsors and guests. It's a celebratory weekend as Ganassi welcomed new sponsor PNC Bank this season and most of the PNC guests will use the hospitality tent to enjoy the three-day event.
The first IndyCar race of 2018 is Sunday on the temporary street course through the streets of downtown St. Petersburg.
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