Australia’s Will Power claims pole in season-opener IndyCar race


“I have to say it was a very neat lap and I didn’t really leave anything on the table.

“Honestly, I didn’t expect to be on pole because we had used [Firestone alternate] tyres.

“We didn’t have new [alternate tyres] like a couple of the other guys so, over the moon, man, over the moon to start on pole. I really am happy.”

Power led the Team Penske one-two in qualifying with Josef Newgarden qualified second.

The second row on Monday morning (AEDT) belongs to Chip Ganassi Racing.

Felix Rosenqvist will start third in his IndyCar debut alongside reigning series champion Scott Dixon.

Both Rosenqvist and Dixon advanced through qualifying because of penalties to two other drivers.

Dixon made it out of the first round when Takuma Sato’s time was disallowed, and Rosenqvist made it into the Fast Six when Colton Herta’s times were disqualified for interference in the second qualifying session.

Herta thought he was a contender for the pole in his debut for Harding Steinbrenner Racing, but the 18-year-old rookie was instead eliminated.

“I blocked him, simple as that,” Herta said. “I’m pretty mad but rules are rules and we broke them.”

The final two slots in the Fast Six went to Andretti Autosport as the top three teams in IndyCar all showed why they dominate the series with strong qualifying runs.

Ryan Hunter-Reay and Alexander Rossi were fifth and sixth.

AP

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