Will Power prevailed in the very last second of the Firestone Fast Six to take the pole for the inaugural IndyCar Classic at the Circuit of the Americas.

The Firestone Fast Six featured a diverse battle for pole as four teams and two rookies were represented – Chip Ganassi Racing with Scott Dixon and Felix Rosenqvist, Team Penske with Will Power, Andretti Autosport with Ryan Hunter-Reay and Alexander Rossi and Harding Steinbrenner Racing with rookie Colton Herta.

Felix Rosenqvist, who set the fastest lap of the weekend in Q2 at 1:45.4542s in Q2, was the first to draw blood but couldn't replicate his lap and settled for a lap of 1:46.5680. Colton Herta was the next to attack and unseated his rookie rival by two-tenths with a lap of 1:46.3594s.

Alexander Rossi then rose to the fore and delivered a heavy punch with a lap of 1:46.1761 as the checkered flag flew.

His good lap proved to be all for naught as Power took to the 3.426-mile circuit with a fresh set of Firestone Red tyres. The Aussie gave an even harder blow with a lap of 1:46.0177s to take the pole.

The 2018 winner of the Indianapolis 500 noted that his pole lap came down to his decisive moment to make a last minute run at the pole, and was on the edge of his seat the entire lap.

“I thought our only chance for the pole was one lap of fuel and do a lap and then next day, one lap of fuel and do a lap and see what we got," said the driver of the No. 12 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet. "That last lap was very neat and I finally breathed by the time I got to the Start/Finish line.

 “It’s a track with a lot of turns and it’s very technical and a lot of fun and really difficult to get your car around. So, I really enjoyed that one.”

The pole is the 56th of Power’s career, which is just 11 shy of the all-time record of 67 set by Mario Andretti. It also gives Power a shot at a $100,000 bonus from COTA if he can win tomorrow's race from pole - a feat he has accomplished 16 times.

Rossi will start second, the sixth front row start of the 27-year-old Californian’s career. His Andretti Autosport teammate Ryan Hunter-Reay will start from third.

Herta was dropped to fourth, but his run was an excellent recovery for him and his Harding Steinbrenner Racing team as a mechanical problem limited track time yesterday.

The Ganassi pair of Rosenqvist and Dixon will occupy the third row. Rosenqvist set the quickest lap of the weekend in Q2

St. Petersburg winner Josef Newgarden was bumped out of the Fast Six in the final minute which relegated him to seventh place. Patricio O’Ward also barely missed out on making his second Fast Six in his second IndyCar race and will start in eighth.

Zach Veach was on a flying lap as the seconds counted down but lost time in the final sector and will start from ninth and Graham Rahal completed the top ten.

Santino Ferrucci made it to Q2 for the first time in his IndyCar career and will start from 11th alongside AJ Foyt Racing’s Matheus Leist in 12th, who advanced from Q1 for the first time since St. Petersburg last year.

Red flags for incidents in Turn 19 ended both opening group sessions a few minutes early. Jack Harvey brought out the red in Group 1 while former series champion Tony Kanaan caused the red in Group 2.

Kanaan’s spin bit both Marcus Ericsson and Simon Pagenaud from advancing to Q2 as they were both on flyers. Ericsson, who raced at COTA in Formula One from 2014-18, will start 16th. Pagenaud suffered a similar fate at St. Pete and ended up 22nd.

United States MotoGP - COTA advert

Video Thumbnail: 




Loading Comments...