IndyCar Portland: Herta beats Power to pole, Newgarden down in P13

Jake Nichol
Autosport
Herta beats Power to Portland pole
Herta beats Power to Portland pole

Harding Steinbrenner Racing's Colton Herta secured the second pole position of his rookie IndyCar season in qualifying at Portland, nudging out Will Power with the last lap of the session.

Herta, who also took pole at Road America, initially completed a series of laps on the slower, black-walled Firestone tyres in the early stages of the Fast Six segment, gaining a slim advantage over reigning champion Scott Dixon, as Power waited until the end of the session to make his sole run.

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The Penske driver then vaulted to provisional pole on the alternate red-walled tyres, despite losing time out of the final corner, posting a time of 57.830 seconds.

But Herta had pitted to take on fresh red tyres for a final assault, and lapped 0.019s quicker than Power to secure pole, with Dixon third.

Power was the highest placed Chevrolet runner, as only he and Spencer Pigot made it through to the Fast 12, with Pigot's Ed Carpenter Racing machine qualifying 10th.

After disappointing results at Pocono and Gateway, Andretti Autosport's Alexander Rossi was unable to seize an opportunity to eat into Josef Newgarden's championship lead after the 2017 champion fell in the first qualifying group.

Rossi, who had comfortably made it through to the Fast 12, was bumped late in the 10-minute segment by Chip Ganassi's Felix Rosenqvist, who improved by a tenth of a second to edge Rossi out.

Rosenqvist went onto take fifth on the grid, alongside Ryan Hunter-Reay in sixth.

This left Rossi stranded the wrong side of the cut-off line in seventh, with points leader Newgarden down in 13th after a scrappy session where he ran wide on his fastest lap.

After Newgarden was eliminated, Simon Pagenaud - second in the points standings - also failed to capitalise on the Penske driver's misfortunes, as he could only manage 18th on the grid.

Jack Harvey impressed for Meyer Shank Racing on his way to fourth, slotting in alongside Dixon on the second row.

Conor Daly, who is substituting for Marcus Ericsson as he is on third driver duties for Alfa Romeo at Formula 1's Belgian Grand Prix, secured a top 10 starting spot for the #7 Schmidt Peterson Motorsports entry with ninth, one place behind team-mate James Hinchcliffe.

Starting grid

Pos

Driver

Team

Car

Time

Gap

1

Colton Herta

Harding Racing

Dallara/Honda

57.8111s

-

2

Will Power

Team Penske

Dallara/Chevrolet

57.8303s

0.0192s

3

Scott Dixon

Chip Ganassi Racing

Dallara/Honda

57.8355s

0.0244s

4

Jack Harvey

Meyer Shank Racing

Dallara/Honda

58.1008s

0.2897s

5

Felix Rosenqvist

Chip Ganassi Racing

Dallara/Honda

58.1620s

0.3509s

6

Ryan Hunter-Reay

Andretti Autosport

Dallara/Honda

58.1823s

0.3712s

7

Alexander Rossi

Andretti Autosport

Dallara/Honda

57.8864s

-

8

James Hinchcliffe

Schmidt Peterson Motorsports

Dallara/Honda

57.9994s

-

9

Conor Daly

Schmidt Peterson Motorsports

Dallara/Honda

58.0192s

-

10

Spencer Pigot

Ed Carpenter Racing

Dallara/Chevrolet

58.0415s

-

11

Zach Veach

Andretti Autosport

Dallara/Honda

58.2149s

-

12

Sebastien Bourdais

Dale Coyne Racing

Dallara/Honda

58.3001s

-

13

Josef Newgarden

Team Penske

Dallara/Chevrolet

57.9585s

-

14

Santino Ferrucci

Dale Coyne Racing

Dallara/Honda

57.8476s

-

15

Graham Rahal

Rahal Letterman Lanigan

Dallara/Honda

57.9648s

-

16

Marco Andretti

Andretti Herta

Dallara/Honda

57.8527s

-

17

Takuma Sato

Rahal Letterman Lanigan

Dallara/Honda

57.9668s

-

18

Simon Pagenaud

Team Penske

Dallara/Chevrolet

57.9479s

-

19

Tony Kanaan

AJ Foyt Enterprises

Dallara/Chevrolet

58.1030s

-

20

Max Chilton

Carlin

Dallara/Chevrolet

57.9866s

-

21

Matheus Leist

AJ Foyt Enterprises

Dallara/Chevrolet

58.1558s

-

22

Charlie Kimball

Carlin

Dallara/Chevrolet

58.0582s

-

23

Ed Jones

Ed Carpenter Racing

Dallara/Chevrolet

58.2165s

-


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