Lundgaard on pole at Indy GP, Penske misses top 10
Saturday 13th May, 2023 - 7:22am
Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing’s Christian Lundgaard has qualified on pole position for the IndyCar Grand Prix while all three Team Penske drivers missed the top 10.
Lundgaard (#45 Honda) achieved his first ever IndyCar pole by a margin of just 0.0027s on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course after a moment for Felix Rosenqvist (#6 Chevrolet) on the McLaren driver’s final lap.
Row 2 will be Chip Ganassi Racing’s Alex Palou (#10 Honda) and another RLLR pilot in Jack Harvey (#30 Honda), with the Fast Six rounded out by McLaren’s Pato O’Ward (#5 Chevrolet) and Andretti Autosport’s Kyle Kirkwood (#27 Honda).
Stan Sport is the only way to watch every round of the INDYCAR SERIES. Click here for all the action streaming ad-free, live and on demand.
Half of the Fast Six started the segment on used alternate tyres and half on primaries, with RLLR on the former strategy.
Harvey banked a 1:09.4220s on his first run and Lundgaard was second on a 1:09.5827s, before they all returned to pit lane to set up for their second runs.
All would head back out on used reds, Kirkwood’s newer than the rest after he had to serve a drive-through penalty in Round 2 for cutting the pit lane transition line, and he would move to third on a 1:09.6292s.
Lundgaard then jumped three spots to the top with a 1:09.3321s before Palou moved into a provisional second place with a final-minute 1:09.3780s.
Rosenqvist was last of the six with the chequered flag out, but was on a very good lap until he had a moment between Turns 9 and 10.
That may well have been the difference when the Swede tripped the beam in a time of 1:09.3348s, elevating himself to Row 2, but not quite to pole position.
Stan Sport is the only way to watch every round of the IndyCar Series. Click here for all the action streaming ad-free, live and on demand.
Earlier, in the second segment, Palou was quickest on a 1:10.2082s, but his Ganassi team-mate Marcus Ericsson (#8 Honda) missed the top six by 0.0288s.
The 2022 Indianapolis 500 winner is thus set to line up seventh on the starting grid, ahead of Graham Rahal (#15 RLLR Honda) and another Ganassi driver in Scott Dixon (#9 Honda) in ninth.
Alexander Rossi (#7 McLaren Chevrolet) rounded out the top 10 and Marcus Armstrong (#11 Ganassi Honda) claimed 11th, while a subpar 12th for Will Power (#12 Chevrolet) was still the best result for Team Penske.
Power had made an error on his first run in Round 2 of qualifying but that was of little consequence given everyone went for the standard primary tyre banker strategy.
A lock-up at Turn 7 during his red tyre run was far more costly, however, and even though the Queenslander improved to a 1:10.1872s on his final lap, it still left him in 12th position.
In Round 1 of Qualifying, Group 1 was an RLLR one-two with Lundgaard setting the pace on a 1:09.4639s and Rahal second on a 1:09.5627s.
Rosenqvist sat 12th well after the chequered flag but then punched out a 1:09.5838s to jump to third and bump Penske’s Josef Newgarden (#2 Chevrolet) to seventh with no chance to respond.
As it turned out, the two-time champion was caught out during his second run by a spin for Benjamin Pedersen (#55 AJ Foyt Racing Chevrolet), who triggered a local yellow flag which cost Newgarden a lap time.
In Group 2, it was McLaren going one-two, with O’Ward on a 1:09.2937s and Rossi on a 1:09.4747s, but a whole host of big names missed the cut.
Last year’s race winner, Colton Herta (#26 Andretti w/ Curb-Agajanian Honda), was 0.1667s out of the top six, but still bettered Penske’s McLaughlin (#3 Chevrolet) and another Andretti driver in Romain Grosjean (#28 Honda).
All told, the seventh row of the starting grid is Newgarden and Herta, with Row 8 comprised of Devlin DeFrancesco (#29 Andretti Steinbrenner Honda) and McLaughlin, and Row 9 of 2021 IndyCar Grand Prix winner Rinus VeeKay (#21 Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet) and Grosjean.
Tomorrow sees the Warmup from 11:15 ET/01:15 AEST, followed by the 85-lap Race at 15:45 ET/05:45 AEST.
Both sessions are live and ad-free on Stan Sport, with coverage of the race beginning at 05:30 AEST.
|1||45||Christian Lundgaard||D/H/F||1:09.3321||Round 3 / Fast Six|
|2||6||Felix Rosenqvist||D/C/F||1:09.3348||Round 3 / Fast Six|
|3||10||Alex Palou||D/H/F||1:09.3780||Round 3 / Fast Six|
|4||30||Jack Harvey||D/H/F||1:09.4220||Round 3 / Fast Six|
|5||5||Pato O’Ward||D/C/F||1:09.5422||Round 3 / Fast Six|
|6||27||Kyle Kirkwood||D/H/F||1:09.6292||Round 3 / Fast Six|
|7||8||Marcus Ericsson||D/H/F||1:09.4419||Elimination Round 2 / Top 12|
|8||15||Graham Rahal||D/H/F||1:09.4711||Elimination Round 2 / Top 12|
|9||9||Scott Dixon||D/H/F||1:09.4757||Elimination Round 2 / Top 12|
|10||7||Alexander Rossi||D/C/F||1:09.5471||Elimination Round 2 / Top 12|
|11||11||Marcus Armstrong||D/H/F||1:09.6148||Elimination Round 2 / Top 12|
|12||12||Will Power||D/C/F||1:10.1872||Elimination Round 2 / Top 12|
|13||2||Josef Newgarden||D/C/F||1:09.8402||Elimination Round 1 / Group 1|
|14||26||Colton Herta||D/H/F||1:09.8375||Elimination Round 1 / Group 2|
|15||29||Devlin DeFrancesco||D/H/F||1:09.8676||Elimination Round 1 / Group 1|
|16||3||Scott McLaughlin||D/C/F||1:09.9899||Elimination Round 1 / Group 2|
|17||21||Rinus VeeKay||D/C/F||1:09.9625||Elimination Round 1 / Group 1|
|18||28||Romain Grosjean||D/H/F||1:10.0747||Elimination Round 1 / Group 2|
|19||60||Simon Pagenaud||D/H/F||1:10.2625||Elimination Round 1 / Group 1|
|20||18||David Malukas||D/H/F||1:10.2562||Elimination Round 1 / Group 2|
|21||20||Conor Daly||D/C/F||1:10.2669||Elimination Round 1 / Group 1|
|22||51||Sting Ray Robb||D/H/F||1:10.2747||Elimination Round 1 / Group 2|
|23||55||Benjamin Pedersen||D/C/F||1:10.5181||Elimination Round 1 / Group 1|
|24||77||Callum Ilott||D/C/F||1:10.2920||Elimination Round 1 / Group 2|
|25||78||Agustin Canapino||D/C/F||1:10.5424||Elimination Round 1 / Group 1|
|26||06||Helio Castroneves||D/H/F||1:10.3509||Elimination Round 1 / Group 2|
|27||14||Santino Ferrucci||D/C/F||1:10.5879||Elimination Round 1 / Group 2|
Join the discussion below in the Speedcafe.com comments section
Please note: Speedcafe.com reserves the right to remove any comment that does not follow the comment policy. For support, contact [email protected]