Takuma Sato won the pole in Alabama

Takuma Sato won the pole in Alabama

April 8, 2019 0 By autotimesnews

Takuma Sato was the best in the 3rd stage of the 2019 season IndyCar season qualification on the Barber Highway in Alabama. This is the first pole of the Japanese since 2017 and the eighth in his career. In the final segment of the qualification, “fast six”, Sato managed at the right time to go to the track on the rolled soft tires and win first place at the start, having passed the best lap in 1: 08.5934.

Together with him from the first row of the starting field, his team mate Rahal Letterman Lanigan will start the race – Graham Reichol, who lost 0.1037 seconds to Sato. Thus, the team fully occupied the first row.

“It’s just a dream come true,” noted Sato. – The team does not matter which of us is the first, but for me it matters. Today we were able to put everything together. ”

The RLL team did not conduct interseason tests in Barbera before the start of the season and chose to work for more days in Seering. At the very beginning of the weekend, things at Sato were difficult, there was a small incident, and there was not enough speed, although on Friday nobody was able to get the most out of the red tires. But on Saturday the situation has changed.

“Tighter and softer tires were equal in speed yesterday,” said Sato. “But today softer tires have become faster.”

Graham Reichol was satisfied with the result and position on the first row of the starting field despite the fact that he lost the pole position to Takume Sato.

“To be honest, I made a little mistake in the fifth turn, when I accidentally dropped one more gear,” said Reichol. – Surely at this moment I hurt myself. But I am very happy for Takum. Our team did an excellent job in the off season. We heard a lot of opinions that we are not capable of high results, but for us it became just an additional motivation. ”

Scott Dixon is in third place, this time re-qualifying his new team-mate. Dixon completed his best lap in 1: 08.8081, but noted a drop in pace more than a second compared to the November tests in Alabama.

Along with him on the second row is the SPM driver James Hinchcliffe (1: 08.8476), who for the first time this year was in the “fast six”. As in the case of Reichol, he could go through his circle faster.

“We could show more on red tires,” said Hinchcliffe. – But I made a mistake in the 17th turn. I am very upset because we had a terrific car. But from the fourth place at the start we can spend a good race. What tires will be better? Soft or hard? So far, we do not know. “

The third row of the starting field was taken by Sebastian Bourde and Spencer Pigot. The ECR team driver was the only Chevrolet representative in the final qualification. Pigot also showed the fastest lap on the results of the entire qualifying session – 1: 08.3548, but it was still in the group part.

Will Power and Alexander Rossi did not make it into the “fast six” and will start the race from the fourth row.

Behind them, Colton Herta, the winner of the second stage on the track of the Americas in Texas, will start the race from the ninth position. Santino Ferrucci closed the top ten.

Championship leader Joseph Nyugarden qualified only 16th, and Felix Rosenquist at the 17th position. Newgarden was not fast from the very beginning of the weekend, and the reason for this has not yet been found.