Qualifying for the Indianapolis Grand Prix is complete, and the result is that we could be in for an interesting race day tomorrow.
Thoughts? Here’s mine.
Penske vs. The Field. In the past at the GP, it was Team Penske’s world, and everyone else was trying to live in it. Not today. Other than Will Power, who made the Firestone Fast Six and will start sixth, they were a non-starter today. Simon Pagenaud will start eighth, Josef Newgarden will go off 13th and Helio Castroneves will start his first IndyCar race of the year in the 15th position. Other than Newgarden winning at St. Pete and Power dominating the first half of the race at COTA, what’s up with these guys?
Ganassi vs. The World. Congrats to Felix Rosenqvist on his first NTT IndyCar pole. He’s been knocking on the door this season and it was only a matter of time before he broke through to win his first P1 Award. With teammate Scott Dixon starting next to him in the front row, it will be an interesting duel into Turn 1 for P1. Ganassi has actually been one of the most consistent teams all season, they are just looking for their first win to show for it.
Surprise, surprise. It was a tough day for Penske, and even worse for Andretti Autosport, which completely missed the Fast 6 and has Ryan Hunter-Reay in the 16th position as its highest starter. But on the flip side, the Fast 6 saw Jack Harvey and Ed Jones make an appearance for the first time this year. Both have had success on the IMS road course and the oval dating back to their Road to Indy days, and Jones finished an impressive third in the 2017 Indy 500. Harvey will start P3 and Jones P5 tomorrow, will past results lead to future success?
Predictions. Given the forecast of rain, we could be in for an interesting race tomorrow, which also makes prognosticating difficult too. Rain or no rain, I think Colton Herta will become the first two-time winner of the season. He was quick all day and topped the speed charts on both the open and road course tests recently, and will start P4 tomorrow. Let’s go with Harvey to finish second, and Rosenqvist rounding out the podium.
It’s finally May in Indy!
Photo credit: Mike Harding/IndyCar Media