IndyCar: Will Power wins third straight Firestone 600 pole


FORT WORTH – It’s hot down here in North Texas, but the heat isn’t making you see triple. Will Power won his third straight Verizon P1 Award at Texas Motor Speedway for the Firestone 600 with an average speed of 218.519 mph.

Power was the first of the field’s 23 cars to take to the 1.5-mile track.

“I drew number one obviously this morning in the drivers meeting,” Power said. “I was a little worried about the conditions.  It kind of stayed consistent over the whole run of qualifying.  I was really happy to get pole honestly.”

It’s also Power’s fourth pole in 2015, having started P1 in St. Petersburg, the Indianapolis road course and race one of the Dual in Detroit. Team Penske will start from the pole for the eighth time in nine races in 2015. The only exception came with Scott Dixon in the Indianapolis 500.

“The race, it’s going to be interesting.  You know, you got all this stuff you can put on to add downforce if you want,” Power said.  “But it’s quite draggy, so you lose a bit of speed.  It’s going to be about finding the right compromise for speed loss versus grip.  I guess we’ll try some things tonight and see how it all stacks up.”

Speaking of Team Penske, three of the top five positions on the starting grid are filled with Power’s teammates. Simon Pagenaud will start P2 (218.441), Helio Castroneves is P3 (218.059) and Juan Pablo Montoya is P5 at 217.530 mph.

The quartet was broken up by the last qualifying attempt, made by Andretti Autosport’s Carloz Munoz and his average speed of 217.831.

Defending race winner Ed Carpenter qualified 15th, one position behind teammate Josef Newgarden.

Sage Karam, making his first appearance at TMS, qualified 10th.

Starting Grid:


NTT re-signs as IndyCar title sponsor in multiyear deal starting with the 2024 season

James Black/Penske Entertainment

The IndyCar Series has re-signed NTT as its title sponsor in a multiyear agreement starting in 2024.

NTT, a global information technology and communications company based in Japan, became the series’ title sponsor before the 2019 season after starting as a sponsor of the No. 10 Dallara-Honda for Chip Ganassi Racing.

NTT Data (a subsidiary of parent company Nippon Telegraph and Telephone Corp.) will remain the official technology partner of IndyCar, Indianapolis Motor Speedway, the Indy 500 and the NASCAR Brickyard weekend.

With the extension, an IndyCar spokesman said NTT would become the second-longest title sponsor in series history. The longest title sponsor was PPG from 1980-97 (under the CART sanction of the Champ Car Series).

NTT replaced Verizon, which was IndyCar’s title sponsor from 2014-18 after IZOD from 2010-13.

“NTT is an excellent partner across our enterprise with strong expertise and a deep commitment to our sport,” Penske Corp. chairman and IndyCar owner Roger Penske said in a release. “From Smart Venue technology at the Racing Capital of the World to the reimagined Series mobile application, NTT is transforming the fan experience in new and innovative ways. We look forward to a bright future together.”

NTT has used artificial intelligence-enabled optical detection technology at IMS to provide information to the track’s operations and security teams, helping improve fan traffic flow and safety, the track said.

“IndyCar is a great partner for NTT Data because of our shared commitment to driving innovation, increasing sustainability and delivering amazing experiences,” NTT Data CEO Kaz Nishihata said in a release. “We also appreciate how IndyCar is so diverse, with drivers from 15 different countries, and races that range from short ovals and superspeedways to road and street courses. It’s both an incredible sport and a wonderful example for our world.”

NTT also has been instrumental in helping redesign the IndyCar app and providing more race and driver data for use in NBC Sports’ broadcasts by utilizing 140 data points from every car in the field.

“NTT is fully invested in the development and growth of our sport and has already established a terrific track record in our industry with problem-solving capabilities and access to top talent and tools,” Penske Entertainment president and CEO Mark Miles said.

Said NTT Data Services CEO Bob Pryor: “We’re thrilled to continue our collaborations that enhance and expand the fan experience for motorsports and serve as proof points for data analytics, AI, and other innovative digital technologies. For more than a century, this racing series has pioneered innovations making driving safer for everyone, and by continuing this relationship, we will accelerate the pace of innovations and new technologies, particularly related to sustainability that ultimately can benefit organizations, communities and individuals around the world.”

Starting as a Japanese telephone company, NTT grew into a $100 billion-plus tech services giant with U.S. operations based in Plano, Texas.