Simon Pagenaud took his sixth pole position of the Verizon IndyCar Series season with a new track record despite in tricky conditions at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course on Saturday.
The Frenchman will lead an all Team Penske front row for Sunday’s race, with Pagenaud denying team-mate and championship rival Will Power by just 0.0681 seconds.
Josef Newgarden will start third for Ed Carpenter Racing, finishing 0.2500 seconds behind Pagenaud’s time, with Ryan Hunter-Reay fourth for Andretti Autosport, the best of the Honda-powered drivers with the top three all with Chevrolet engines.
Charlie Kimball was the only Chip Ganassi Racing driver to make it through to the Fast Six shoot-out and will start fifth, with Graham Rahal, winner at Mid-Ohio a year ago, sixth for his father’s Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing team.
The trickiest conditions came during the Fast Twelve session, when rain made conditions tricky and saw a number of high profile casualties, with Team Penske duo Helio Castroneves and Juan Pablo Montoya set to start seventh and eighth.
James Hinchcliffe and Mikhail Aleshin will form an all Schmidt Peterson Motorsport row five, while Scott Dixon, a five-time winner at Mid-Ohio, was down in eleventh for Chip Ganassi Racing, and will start alongside this season’s Indianapolis 500 winner Alexander Rossi of Andretti Herta Autosport.
Max Chilton once again missed out on the Fast Twelve session by the narrowest of margins, and will join Chip Ganassi Racing team-mate Tony Kanaan on the seventh row, ahead of Andretti Autosport’s Carlos Munoz and Sebastien Bourdais, who will be disappointed to be down in sixteenth for KVSH Racing.
Jack Hawksworth was down in seventeenth in a disappointing session for AJ Foyt Racing, with team-mate Takuma Sato down in twentieth, with debutant RC Enerson of Dale Coyne Racing and Spencer Pigot of Ed Carpenter Racing in between them.
Marco Andretti’s disappointing season continued with twenty-first for Andretti Autosport, while Conor Daly ended the session at the back of the field in the second Dale Coyne Racing entry.
Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course Qualifying Result
|1||22||Simon Pagenaud||FRA||Team Penske||1:03.8700|
|2||12||Will Power||AUS||Team Penske||1:03.9381|
|3||21||Josef Newgarden||USA||Ed Carpenter Racing||1:04.1200|
|4||28||Ryan Hunter-Reay||USA||Andretti Autosport||1:04.3265|
|5||83||Charlie Kimball||USA||Chip Ganassi Racing||1:04.3644|
|6||15||Graham Rahal||USA||Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing||1:04.4697|
|-||-||Eliminated in Q2||-||-||-|
|7||3||Helio Castroneves||BRZ||Team Penske||1:04.4300|
|8||2||Juan Pablo Montoya||COL||Team Penske||1:04.5141|
|9||5||James Hinchcliffe||CAN||Schmidt Peterson Motorsports||1:04.5796|
|10||7||Mikhail Aleshin||RUS||Schmidt Peterson Motorsports||1:04.6084|
|11||9||Scott Dixon||NZL||Chip Ganassi Racing||1:04.6554|
|12||98||Alexander Rossi||USA||Andretti Autosport||1:04.8082|
|-||-||Eliminated in Q1||-||-||-|
|13||8||Max Chilton||GBR||Chip Ganassi Racing||1:04.7752|
|14||10||Tony Kanaan||BRZ||Chip Ganassi Racing||1:04.5885|
|15||26||Carlos Munoz||COL||Andretti Autosport||1:04.8621|
|16||11||Sebastien Bourdais||FRA||KVSH Racing||1:04.5967|
|17||41||Jack Hawksworth||GBR||AJ Foyt Enterprises||1:05.0196|
|18||19||RC Enerson||USA||Dale Coyne Racing||1:04.6576|
|19||20||Spencer Pigot||USA||Ed Carpenter Racing||1:05.1891|
|20||14||Takuma Sato||JAP||AJ Foyt Enterprises||1:04.8354|
|21||27||Marco Andretti||USA||Andretti Autosport||1:05.1997|
|22||18||Conor Daly||USA||Dale Coyne Racing||1:05.1098|