INDIANAPOLIS—Unseasonably cold weather at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway today had everyone looking for more grip on the 2.439-mile, 14-turn road course.
Those who found it, found themselves on the sharp end of the grid.Those who didn’t were left scratching their heads -- and in for a long night to figure out where they went wrong.
Unfortunately, A.J. Foyt’s team will be one of those teams burning the midnight oil as Matheus Leist qualified 21st and Tony Kanaan 24th.
Leist sparked hope when he was second quickest in the early stage of his qualifying round in the No. 4 ABC Supply Chevrolet. He was the quickest of those on the black primary tires– the only one quicker was Helio Castroneves who started on the red alternate tires. However, when everyone switched to the reds, Leist improved his time but not as much as everyone else. He slipped back to 11th (in a group of 12) with his time of 1 minute, 8.7751 seconds (127.668mph).
"A tough day today. We are struggling for grip everywhere. There's not much else to say right now," said Leist, who starts inside on row 11.
Kanaan, who never seemed to get comfortable in his car today, stated, "We're having trouble getting the car to where we need and it's been frustrating, not only for me, but for all team members. We need to regroup and focus on moving forward to get this month going in the right direction."
Kanaan with his race strategist Scott Harner.
Rookie Felix Rosenqvist set the pace to win his first INDYCAR career pole with a time of 1 minute, 8.2785 seconds (128.597mph). His teammate Scott Dixon was second. Jack Harvey made it to his first Firestone Fast Six and will start third followed by rookie Colin Herta, Ed Jones and Will Power, who swept the pole and race in three of the five races run here.
The teams will have a 30 minute warmup starting at 11 AM ET. The INDYCAR Grand Prix will be broadcast live on NBC starting at 3 PM ET.