Rossi Rockets To Pole At Belle Isle

0
68
Alexander Rossi earned the pole for Saturday's Chevrolet Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix Race No. 1. (Al Steinberg Photo)
Alexander Rossi earned the pole for Saturday's Chevrolet Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix Race No. 1. (Al Steinberg Photo)

DETROIT – Alexander Rossi grabbed his second NTT P1 Award of the year Saturday morning by earning the pole for Saturday afternoon’s Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix Race No. 1.

Rossi earned the sixth pole of his career through the second group in an unusual qualification format that is only used at the Detroit doubleheader. The field is split into two groups, 11 cars each, with 12 minutes of track time.

Rossi’s No. 27 NAPA Honda was the fastest with a lap at 1:14.1989 mph around the 2.35-mile, 14-turn temporary street course at Detroit’s Belle Isle Park. That was faster than first group qualifier Josef Newgarden, whose fast time was 1:14.8272.

“There is never a perfect lap, but it was good enough,” Rossi said. “The Andretti boys have been strong here the last couple of years. It was a matter of going out and executing. This is such a difficult part of the season right now and for the crews to get the cars turned around.

“The team has done a good job all weekend. We have been really strong here in the past and have been able to carry that on here.”

Rossi’s first pole this season came in the Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach in April. It was his second-straight pole at Detroit. He also earned the pole last year for Race No. 2.

It was IndyCar pole No. 41 for Andretti Autosport.

Scott Dixon was third overall at 1:14.3995 followed by Felix Rosenqvist at 1:14.9984. Rookie Colton Herta rounds out the top five at 1:15.0772.

The race is set to begin at 3:30 p.m. Eastern Time Saturday.