Friday, December 9, 2022

Alexander Rossi Captures Pole for the Sonsio GP at Road America

Alexander Rossi wins pole at Road America.
Alexander Rossi captured pole for Sunday’s Sonsio Grand Prix at Road America. Image courtesy of Joe Skibinski / Penske Entertainment

Alexander Rossi continued the run of momentum for the weekend and captured pole for Sunday’s Sonsio Grand Prix at Road America.

The 30-year-old California native put down an impressive lap of 1m44.8656s (137.799 mph) around the 4.048-mile, 14-turn permanent road course with a set of primary (black sidewall) tires in the Firestone Fast Six to take the top spot. It marks the seventh pole of Rossi’s IndyCar career, and first since Belle Isle in 2019 (48 starts ago). Additionally, the result provides the eighth different pole winner in as many races this season – the first time it has happened since 1961.

The No. 2 Team Penske Chevrolet of Josef Newgarden was on a set of used alternate (red sidewall) tires and nearly came away with it at the end, falling a narrow 0.0715s off the top spot.

Reigning NTT IndyCar Series champion and defending race winner Alex Palou ended up putting his No. 10 Chip Ganassi Racing Honda third, with teammate Marcus Ericsson in fourth.

Colton Herta and Pato O’Ward came away fifth and sixth, respectively.

The qualifying bout began with rain threatening, but never heavily impacting the entirety of the session.

Some significant notables began with championship leader Will Power not advancing out of the opening group of Round 1. His No. 12 Team Penske Chevrolet ended up eighth in the group, leaving him to start tomorrow’s 55-lap contest from 15th.

Six-time IndyCar champion Scott Dixon saw his hopes to battle for pole stall out in the Fast 12, where his No. 9 Chip Ganassi Racing Honda ended up 10th.

Romain Grosjean’s No. 28 Andretti Autosport Honda needed attention from the crew, which allowed just one lap to try and break into the Fast Six. Despite his best efforts to get the set of alternates up to temperature in a single lap as opposed to the normal two, the Swiss-born Frenchman’s last-gasp run fell short by a slim 0.0810s.

The only incident on the day came during the Fast 12 when Callum Ilott skated off the track and made significant contact with the left side of his No. 77 Juncos Hollinger Racing Chevrolet into the Turn 14 barrier. The incident brought the red flag out with nine minutes remaining in the round, with the session restarted three minutes later. Fortunately for Ilott and Co., the hit with the barrier was square and no damage to the suspension was visible.

Up Next: Final Practice at 5:20 p.m. ET, with live coverage on Peacock and the IndyCar Radio Network.

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