LONG BEACH, Calif. – The ABC Supply team continues to make progress with their ABC Supply Chevrolets this season as the Verizon IndyCar Series hits the streets of Long Beach this weekend.
Although the practice sessions saw some struggles for both drivers at different times, the engineers put on setups for qualifying that both Carlos Munoz and Conor Daly liked. Unfortunately, both drivers were blaming themselves for mistakes they made on their qualifying runs. With the field so tight, even the tiniest miscue can result in the precious loss of a fractional second.
Munoz was a on a lap that would have transferred him to the next round of qualifying but he didn’t get through Turn 9 (the last turn before the timing line) as cleanly as he wanted. It was the same for Conor Daly.
Munoz, who qualified 14th with a time of 1 minute, 7.3783 seconds (105.150 mph) said, “We made a lot of progress from practice 3 to qualifying; we were a bit more competitive. We knew our qualifying group was really tough, and we barely missed it [transferring]. I lost all the time in the last corner (Turn 9). I made a big mistake, we should have been in the Top 12--that was our goal. But we’ll make some changes tonight because the car is not what I need it to be. We’ll see how it goes tomorrow.”
Daly qualified with a time of 1 minute, 7.7977 seconds (104.499 mph) and will start 17th alongside former Foyt driver Takuma Sato.
"We made big steps forward from St. Pete which is nice,” said Daly. “We’re starting several (4) positions higher than we did then which is good. But I’m just disappointed a little bit in myself because I went a little bit wide and just got some of the marbles from the race previously on my tires at the exit of [Turn] 9 so lost a bit of time. I don’t know if it would have been enough to make it into the Top 12. We’re still fighting a little bit of oversteer in the car so hopefully we can continue to build on what we’re doing and just have a good race tomorrow.”
Helio Castroneves won his third straight pole at this track with a time of 1 minute, 6.2254 seconds (106.980 mph). Completing the Firestone Fast Six were: Scott Dixon, Ryan Hunter-Reay, James Hinchcliffe, Alexander Rossi, and Graham Rahal. The Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach will be televised by NBC Sports Network starting at 4 p.m. ET.