Impressive youngster Josef Newgarden has claimed the first pole position of his IndyCar Series career with an impressive qualifying display at the Milwaukee Mile oval.
The CFH Racing driver – who has already claimed race wins in Alabama and Toronto this year – drew the fifteenth run in Sunday afternoon’s two-lap qualifying dash, and posted an average speed of 170.223mph (273.947km/h) to beat the provisional benchmark that had just been posted by Chip Ganassi Racing’s Tony Kanaan.
The American’s time ultimately proved unbeatable, with only Schmidt Peterson Motorsport stand-in Ryan Briscoe able to get close. Having struggled to find a decent balance in practice, the Australian leveraged teammate James Jake’s set-up and used it to great effect – Jakes himself qualified a solid fifth-fastest.
Sage Karam was another youngster to show the more seasoned drivers how it should be done, putting his Ganassi entry third-fastest to achieve an all-Ganassi second row.
Graham Rahal – the winner last time out in Fontana – qualified sixth-fastest in the family-run entry, and was left to regret taking a little too much rear downforce off his car before qualifying.
Markedly changed track and weather conditions between practice and qualifying saw a number of missteps in set-up decisions.
The championship-leading Team Penske outfit had easily its worst qualifying result of the season. Series leader Juan Pablo Montoya was the fastest of the four-car stable in eighth, while teammates Will Power (14th) and Simon Pagenaud (17th) will have a tough challenge trying to make up lost ground in the race.
But their woes were nothing in comparison to the fourth car of Hélio Castroneves, which was not delivered to the scrutineers on-time for pre-qualifying inspection. He was forbidden from attempting a qualifying run and starts from the last row.
The 250-lap race gets underway at 4:35pm local time (GMT-5).
|2015 IndyCar Series ABC Supply Wisconsin 250 – Qualifying Results|
|Grid||Driver||Team / Entry||Avg Speed|
|1.||Josef Newgarden||CFH Racing||170.223mph|
|2.||Ryan Briscoe||Schmidt Peterson Motorsports||170.086mph|
|3.||Sage Karam||Chip Ganassi Racing||169.639mph|
|4.||Tony Kanaan||Chip Ganassi Racing||169.542mph|
|5.||James Jakes||Schmidt Peterson Motorsports||169.317mph|
|6.||Graham Rahal||Rahal Letterman Lanigan||169.126mph|
|7.||Charlie Kimball||Chip Ganassi Racing||169.122mph|
|8.||Juan Pablo Montoya||Team Penske||169.108mph|
|9.||Marco Andretti||Andretti Autosport||168.994mph|
|10.||Scott Dixon||Chip Ganassi Racing||168.650mph|
|11.||Sébastien Bourdais||KV Racing Technology||168.462mph|
|12.||Gabby Chaves||Bryan Herta Autosport||168.364mph|
|13.||Takuma Sato||A.J. Foyt Racing||168.288mph|
|14.||Will Power||Team Penske||167.978mph|
|15.||Justin Wilson||Andretti Autosport||167.863mph|
|16.||Ryan Hunter-Reay||Andretti Autosport||167.690mph|
|17.||Simon Pagenaud||Team Penske||167.422mph|
|18.||Carlos Muñoz||Andretti Autosport||166.545mph|
|19.||Stefano Coletti||KV Racing Technology||166.410mph|
|20.||Tristan Vautier||Dale Coyne Racing||165.786mph|
|21.||Jack Hawksworth||A.J. Foyt Racing||164.827mph|
|22.||Ed Carpenter||CFH Racing||164.005mph|
|23.||Pippa Mann||Dale Coyne Racing||159.214mph|
|DNQ.||Hélio Castroneves||Team Penske||no time|
Image via IndyCar Series