Will Power won the pole position for the Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio Saturday afternoon, with a flying 1 minute, 5.1569 second lap around the 13-Turn, 2.258-mile road course.
The lap, which was the last lap Power made in the Firestone Fast Six, was what Power needed to claim the pole, and restore some much-needed confidence after an uncharacteristically poor season for the Aussie.
“It’s been such a bad year, so disappointing,” Power told NBC Sports following his pole run. “But I have such a fire in me when I do a lap like that, and with in mind everyone that has had such a great year, just sticking it to them.
“It just beats you down in the year when you keep having these bad runs, so I’m so happy to get the pole. So happy.
“It’s great for confidence. I feel so bad for my guys this year. I made some stupid mistakes and wasn’t on the ball in qualifying in Toronto, so this is that energy to pay it back to those guys for all of the effort they put in.”
After announcing a three-year contract extension with Andretti Autosport and Honda earlier in the afternoon, Alexander Rossi was almost about to cap off an already great day with the pole, before Power narrowly beat him for the top spot in his final lap.
“Just looking back at it, Will did a really slow first lap of his two lap run, and I think that I did two pushed laps in a row, and ultimately I ran out of tire because they were used by the time I got halfway through the lap, and that’s where the deficit came from,” Rossi said. “A little bit of a strategy call that they made better than us, but I think our race car is great.”
Row two of Sunday’s race will consist of Penske teammates Josef Newgarden starting third and Simon Pagenaud starting fourth. Sebastien Bourdais and Felix Rosenqvist qualified fifth and sixth, respectfully.
Colton Herta, Scott Dixon, Jack Harvey and Ryan-Hunter Reay round out the top 10 fastest qualifiers.
Live coverage of the Honda Indy 200 begins Sunday afternoon at 4:00 p.m. ET on NBC.