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Power on pole ahead of Sato at St Pete

"I am happy with what we have, we have a lot of work on the car so we focused on that," said the Frenchman. ""I think looking at everyone, I think the chassis, we all struggled so much with the balance that there's so much work on this side that I don't really focus on whether my engine is the best or not."

Vautier was one of the few Honda drivers to do well in the first qualifying session of the year. Notably, the Ganassi pair of Dario Franchitti and Scott Dixon had a poor showing on Saturday, with Franchitti only able to manage tenth on the grid and Scott Dixon consigned to 21st after being unable to progress from his Round 1 group.

"It's frustrating not being up there where we want to be," admitted Franchitti. "I had a car that had too much oversteer in the first session, and we tried something to correct that and it just produced understeer.

"We're struggling with the car a bit and made some small gains today, I think we'll be able to improve both cars a bit over night," he added. "We'll continue to work hard and see what we can come up with for the Target car tomorrow."

"We have just been a bit behind in getting the Target cars up to speed here this weekend for some reason," conceded Dixon. "I keep finding myself fighting understeer in the car. We have another day to work on it and will definitely be working on some solutions before morning warm-up tomorrow."

Team owner Chip Ganassi was certainly not happy with how things had gone so far in St Peterburg, and was starting to make some ominous rumbles about engine suppliers Honda.

"I think Honda has some work to do, but I think they know that," said Ganassi. "They said for years and years and years they want competition, now they've got competition and they are not talking about winning.

"I don't know if they want to win bad enough. They talk about everything at Honda but winning," he added. "I feel like they want to sit around and hold hands and sing. I want to win."

Ganassi is Honda's principal partner in the IndyCar Series with Team Penske and Andretti Autosports both aligned with Chevrolet, but in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series Ganassi's team already uses Chevy engines.

Not that things were going all the Chevrolet font-runners' way. Reigning IndyCar champion Ryan Hunter-Reay was also unable to crack the top six on Saturday, and will start from eighth place immediately ahead of Franchitti.

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Takuma Sato during practice at St Petersburg, Florida - March 2013 (Picture Credit: Shawn Gritzmacher for IndyCar Media)
Simona de Silvestro after qualifying for the Honda Grand Prix of St Petersburg - March 2013. (Picture Credit: Shawn Gritzmacher for IndyCar Media)
Ryan Hunter-Reay during qualifying for the Honda Grand Prix of St Petersburg - March 2013. (Picture Credit: Shawn Gritzmacher for IndyCar Media)
Will Power celebrates pole position for the Honda Grand Prix of St Petersburg, the 2013 IZOD IndyCar Series opener - March 2013. (Picture Credit: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
2018 aero kit Honda
Scott Dixon - Chip Ganassi Indy Car [credit: IndyCar TV Twitter]
Will Power Texas
Detroit IndyCar race start
Detroit IndyCar Andretti RHR
Esteban Gutierrez IndyCar Detroit
Graham Rahal Detroit IndyCar 2017
Takuma Sato Detroit IndyCar
Detroit IndyCar Helio Castroneves
Scott Dixon Indy 500
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Takuma Sato 2017 Indy 500 winner`s circle
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Indy 500, IndyCar, Takuma Sato

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Terrific,nice to see lady driver with big balls in decent eqpt.Too bad Katherine Legge got screwed by the pizzing Penske Jr.Team. Hope for numerous first time winners in ALL motorsport this year to add public interest. TIDE ferrari racing, palm beach. P.S. TIDE raced one of our 14 ferraris ,the 1955 vintage 250 GT Paris Show car in 1988 Cartet Bank Historic races sponsored by Craig Hinton, Historic Sportscar .Racings new co owner, son David Hinton. Sorry my ferrari France 308GTB rally car sponsored by Palm Beach Prestige Auto, Giacomo Verrelli and Pomperei Di Franco will not be ready until Watkins Glen. The year we raced St. Pete Paul Newmans co driver,J. Fitzpatrick was killed in turn three,.stroke ? The St.Pete sunday paper had a half page picture & article about TIDE on the front of the sports section. Please help save the MIAMI Marine Stadium!

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