Power on pole for GP of Indianapolis, continuing Penske qualifying streak

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INDIANAPOLIS – Team Penske continued one, but not both, of its Verizon IndyCar Series qualifying streaks Friday ahead of this weekend’s Angie’s List Grand Prix of Indianapolis.

With Will Power securing the Verizon P1 Award for pole, Penske has its eighth straight pole position dating to Milwaukee last year. Power also set a new track record of 1:09.4886 around the 2.439-mile Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course.

It is Power’s second pole of the year, 38th of his career (sixth all-time) and 227th for Team Penske.

However the team was denied its sixth consecutive front row lockout, a streak which lasted since Auto Club Speedway last year, with Scott Dixon breaking into second near the end of the Firestone Fast Six.

Penske’s four drivers joined Dixon and Tony Kanaan of Chip Ganassi Racing in the Fast Six, which meant the two most successful teams locked out the final qualifying session.

There wasn’t too much to report from Q1, other than the demise of all but one Honda entrant. Jack Hawksworth, who qualified second a year ago, was the only Honda to advance into Q2 for A.J. Foyt Enterprises. Also of note, returning driver Carlos Huertas had an engine issue during the session, which caused a delay in-between Q1 and Q2.

In Q2, the Penske and Ganassi sextet emerged ahead of Sebastien Bourdais, 2014 polesitter and Bourdais’ past teammate Sebastian Saavedra in an impressive eight, Luca Filippi, Stefano Coletti, Hawksworth and Barber race winner Josef Newgarden.

Both Filippi and Coletti turned in their best qualifying efforts of the season.

In the Fast Six, Power noted his pace on old tires, and that was enough for him to emerge at the front of the field in qualifying. Dixon made a late-session surge to try to overtake him, but it wasn’t quite enough.

Helio Castroneves will line up third for his 300th career race, with Juan Pablo Montoya fourth and in the Fast Six for the first time on a road course since his return to the series.

Simon Pagenaud, the 2014 winner, will start fifth ahead of Tony Kanaan.

INDIANAPOLIS – Qualifying Friday for the Angie’s List Grand Prix of Indianapolis Verizon IndyCar Series event at the 2.439-mile Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course, with qualifying position, car number in parentheses, driver, chassis-engine, time and speed in parentheses:

1. (1) Will Power, Chevrolet, 01:09.4886 (126.357)
2. (9) Scott Dixon, Chevrolet, 01:09.7156 (125.946)
3. (3) Helio Castroneves, Chevrolet, 01:09.7388 (125.904)
4. (2) Juan Pablo Montoya, Chevrolet, 01:09.8072 (125.781)
5. (22) Simon Pagenaud, Chevrolet, 01:09.8715 (125.665)
6. (10) Tony Kanaan, Chevrolet, 01:10.2772 (124.940)
7. (11) Sebastien Bourdais, Chevrolet, 01:10.0230 (125.393)
8. (8) Sebastian Saavedra, Chevrolet, 01:10.1572 (125.153)
9. (20) Luca Filippi, Chevrolet, 01:10.1969 (125.082)
10. (4) Stefano Coletti, Chevrolet, 01:10.3679 (124.778)
11. (41) Jack Hawksworth, Honda, 01:10.4558 (124.623)
12. (21) Josef Newgarden, Chevrolet, 01:10.8321 (123.961)
13. (5) James Hinchcliffe, Honda, 01:10.6273 (124.320)
14. (83) Charlie Kimball, Chevrolet, 01:10.5031 (124.539)
15. (6) JR Hildebrand, Chevrolet, 01:10.6380 (124.301)
16. (98) Gabby Chaves, Honda, 01:10.5282 (124.495)
17. (15) Graham Rahal, Honda, 01:10.6480 (124.284)
18. (25) Justin Wilson, Honda, 01:10.5776 (124.408)
19. (28) Ryan Hunter-Reay, Honda, 01:10.8345 (123.957)
20. (7) James Jakes, Honda, 01:10.6749 (124.236)
21. (26) Carlos Munoz, Honda, 01:10.8786 (123.879)
22. (14) Takuma Sato, Honda, 01:10.7391 (124.124)
23. (18) Carlos Huertas, Honda, 01:12.5038 (121.103)
24. (27) Marco Andretti, Honda, 01:11.1636 (123.383)
25. (19) Francesco Dracone, Honda, 01:12.5814 (120.973)