Photo: Indianapolis Motor Speedway, LLC Photography

MRTI: Colton Herta takes Indy Lights pole at Watkins Glen

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WATKINS GLEN, N.Y. – Colton Herta will start on pole for the season finale of the Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires at Watkins Glen International. Herta’s best lap of 1:32.439 was more than three tenths of a second quicker than second-place Santi Urrutia, whose best lap came in at 1:32.795.

For Herta, this is his seventh pole of 2017 and comes at the end of a year that seen a lot of speed from the 17-year-old, but a string of inconsistent finishes and bad luck hampered his overall championship efforts

“I think it’s just been a lot of me gaining my confidence in the races. We’ve been quick all year. We’ve had a lot of poles this year, but just haven’t quite gotten it done in the races. But, we have a car for the race, we were really quick on old tires, and we were obviously quick on new tires. So, it should be good,” Herta told NBC Sports after qualifying.

The aforementioned Urrutia will flank Herta on the front row. Aaron Telitz, Nico Jamin, and Zachary Claman De Melo completed the top five. Champion-elect Kyle Kaiser, who need only start Sunday morning’s race to clinch the 2017 Indy Lights championship, qualified tenth.

Qualifying results are below. Sunday morning’s race begins at 10:50 a.m.


Newgarden fastest as Castroneves returns in weather-shortened Barber test

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The Verizon IndyCar Series took to Barber Motorsports Park on Tuesday for an open test, with 24 entries tackling the 2.38-mile road course.

Weather intervened in the afternoon, preventing nearly the entire field from going out, but the weather held off during the morning enough for one session to be run in its entirety.

Team Penske’s Josef Newgarden led the way, with a quick lap of 1:07.979, ahead of Team Penske teammates Will Power and Helio Castroneves. For Castroneves, this marked his first IndyCar outing of 2018.

Helio Castroneves was back in an IndyCar on Tuesday at Barber Motorsports Park. Photo: IndyCar

Sporting the Pennzoil “yellow submarine” paint scheme, Castroneves turned 41 laps around Barber in the morning session, with a quick lap of 1:08.315. He was also the only driver to venture out on track in the afternoon, completing eight laps.

The Dale Coyne Racing duo of Sebastien Bourdais and Zachary Claman De Melo completed the top five.

Results are below.