Newgarden snatches pole in Penske lockout

Josef Newgarden

Josef Newgarden has edged Team Penske team-mate Will Power to pole at Road America by less than 0.05s.

Alexander Rossi threw down the challenge to the two Penske drivers in the Fast 6 when he went two tenths faster than the field on his first flyer.

With the chequered flag out, Power clocked a 1:43.2508s to go from fourth position back to the top in the #12 Chevrolet.

Newgarden (#1 Chevrolet) went marginally quicker with a committed 1:43.2026s moments later.

Honda-powered cars filled out the rest of the Fast 6, including an all-Andretti Autosport second row.

The order on that row was reversed after the chequered flag, however, with Car #28 of Ryan Hunter-Reay also jumping Rossi and Car #27.

Robert Wickens (#6 Schmidt Peterson Honda) qualified fifth and Sebastien Bourdais (#18 DCR w/ Vasser-Sullivan) sixth.

Power only just made the final phase of qualifying having been sixth and only 0.0363s faster than next-best, namely Takuma Sato (#30 Rahal Letterman Lanigan Honda), at the end of the preceding segment.

Series leader Scott Dixon (#9 Chip Ganassi Honda) missed out and will start alongside Sato, while Graham Rahal (#15 Rahal Letterman Lanigan Honda) and Spencer Pigot (#21 Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet) round out the top 10.

Simon Pagenaud (#22 Team Penske Chevrolet) could only manage 14th, with James Hinchcliffe (#5 Schmidt Peterson Honda) starting directly behind on the next row.

The Kohler Grand Prix (55 laps) starts tomorrow at 0305 AEST.

Highlights: Qualifying

Starting grid: Road America

Pos Num Driver C/E/T Time Session
1 1 Josef Newgarden D/C/F 1:43.2026 Fast Six
2 12 Will Power D/C/F 1:43.2508 Fast Six
3 28 Ryan Hunter-Reay D/H/F 1:43.3811 Fast Six
4 27 Alexander Rossi D/H/F 1:43.4361 Fast Six
5 6 Robert Wickens (R) D/H/F 1:43.7121 Fast Six
6 18 Sebastien Bourdais D/H/F 1:43.7332 Fast Six
7 30 Takuma Sato D/H/F 1:43.1108 Round 2 / Top 12
8 9 Scott Dixon D/H/F 1:43.1769 Round 2 / Top 12
9 15 Graham Rahal D/H/F 1:43.1874 Round 2 / Top 12
10 21 Spencer Pigot D/C/F 1:43.1995 Round 2 / Top 12
11 26 Zach Veach (R) D/H/F 1:43.2265 Round 2 / Top 12
12 10 Ed Jones D/H/F 1:43.3544 Round 2 / Top 12
13 20 Jordan King (R) D/C/F 1:43.7356 Round 1 / Group 1
14 22 Simon Pagenaud D/C/F 1:43.4153 Round 1 / Group 2
15 98 Marco Andretti D/H/F 1:43.9843 Round 1 / Group 1
16 5 James Hinchcliffe D/H/F 1:43.8591 Round 1 / Group 2
17 19 Zachary Claman DeMelo (R) D/H/F 1:44.0189 Round 1 / Group 1
18 14 Tony Kanaan D/C/F 1:44.1165 Round 1 / Group 2
19 23 Charlie Kimball D/C/F 1:45.1161 Round 1 / Group 1
20 4 Matheus Leist (R) D/C/F 1:44.3438 Round 1 / Group 2
21 32 Alfonso Celis Jnr (R) D/C/F 1:45.5584 Round 1 / Group 1
22 59 Max Chilton D/C/F 1:44.3442 Round 1 / Group 2
23 88 Gabby Chaves D/C/F 1:44.6258 Round 1 / Group 2

(C)hassis: D=Dallara | (E)ngine: C=Chevy, H=Honda | (T)yre: F=Firestone

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