Justin Wilson was left disappointed at Surfers Paradise after only managing ninth on the grid for the non-championship Nikon Indy 300.

The Newman Haas Lanigan Racing driver had posted the quickest time of the weekend to date at Surfers Paradise during practice, but conditions took a turn for the worse in qualifying after a storm hit half an hour before the session got underway.

The Briton managed to make his way successfully through the first phase of qualifying but as the circuit dried, he wasn't able to post a quick enough time to make it through to the Firestone Fast Six.

"Based on our potential I am pretty disappointed," he reflected. "The McDonald's team ran the quickest time the whole weekend but our starting position doesn't reflect that. I thought we had a lot of potential but we couldn't get a lap out of it quick enough. We were slipping and sliding around.

"In conditions like that where its wet and drying you need to be able to get on it and I couldn't for whatever reason. Anything can happen in this race especially with a rolling start here. It's going to chaos at turn one. I think we can still be very smart and work this out because it's by no means over. We can still win this race and show what we are capable of."

Team-mate Graham Rahal also suffered in the qualifying session and having hoped to join Wilson in fighting for pole position, he instead finds himself down in 13th on the grid having failed to make it past the opening phase of qualifying.

"I'm extremely disappointed with our qualifying session," he said. "We have had a good car this weekend and had it been dry I really do think we could have challenged for the pole position. Its frustrating knowing we're starting 13th and unfortunately we're starting near some people who can make our lives more difficult in the race.

"I feel bad for the guys who have worked so hard. We were just so close and only missed progressing to the next session by a tenth of a second."