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Castroneves Leads Penske Qualifying Blitz At Road America

| , RacinToday.com Saturday, June 24 2017

Helio Castroneves collected his 50th career pole Saturday when he edged his Team Penske teammates at Road America. (Photo courtesy of INDYCAR)

Helio Castroneves led Team Penske’s all-out assault on the pole position during Saturday’s qualifying for Sunday’s IndyCar Series race at the Road American road course in Elkhart Lake, Wis.

The pole was the 50th of Castroneves’ IndyCar Series career. He laid down a fast lap of 1- minute, 47.3-seconds at the 14-turn, 4.0-mile track to get it.

“Man, I just went for it,” he said of his fast lap.

That lap was just .0604 seconds faster than that of teammate Will Power, who will start P2.

“I knew it was going to be between us,” Castroneves said of he and Power. “Fifty, man, this is awesome.”

Laying down the third- and fourth-fastest laps of the Fast Six qualifying session were Penske drivers Josef Newgarden and Simon Pagenaud.

“Great job for the entire Team Penske. What an honor to be part of this organization,” Castroneves said.

Rounding out the Fast Six were Scott Dixon of Chip Ganassi Racing and Graham Rahal of Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing.

Dixon said he was happy to be “best in class” – that is, the best non-Penske driver.

Rahal opted not to use new red tires in the Fast Six, deciding instead to save a set for race day.

“This team has worked awfully hard to get the No. 15 car a little further up there this weekend,” he said. “It hasn’t come easy for us for sure. It’s been quite a challenge from a setup standpoint but I’m proud to get in the top six, proud to take the fight to the Ganassi boys as well. We’ve been struggling with a loose condition in the car all weekend so to make the top six was a great accomplishment for us. Obviously Penske is on a different planet but we’ll take the fight to them tomorrow.”

(This story will be updated shortly)

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ELKHART LAKE, Wis. – Qualifying Saturday for the KOHLER Grand Prix Verizon IndyCar Series event on the 4.014-mile(s) Road America, with qualifying position, car number in parentheses, driver, chassis-engine, time and speed in parentheses:

1. (3) Helio Castroneves, Chevrolet, 01:41.3007 (142.649)
2. (12) Will Power, Chevrolet, 01:41.3611 (142.564)
3. (2) Josef Newgarden, Chevrolet, 01:41.6608 (142.143)
4. (1) Simon Pagenaud, Chevrolet, 01:42.0385 (141.617)
5. (9) Scott Dixon, Honda, 01:42.9308 (140.389)
6. (15) Graham Rahal, Honda, 01:45.0464 (137.562)
7. (8) Max Chilton, Honda, 01:42.7566 (140.627)
8. (27) Marco Andretti, Honda, 01:42.8614 (140.484)
9. (5) James Hinchcliffe, Honda, 01:43.2105 (140.009)
10. (83) Charlie Kimball, Honda, 01:43.3221 (139.858)
11. (19) Ed Jones, Honda, 01:43.7959 (139.219)
12. (28) Ryan Hunter-Reay, Honda, 01:43.9786 (138.975)
13. (14) Carlos Munoz, Chevrolet, 01:42.9039 (140.426)
14. (20) Spencer Pigot, Chevrolet, 01:42.8875 (140.449)
15. (98) Alexander Rossi, Honda, 01:43.0171 (140.272)
16. (10) Tony Kanaan, Honda, 01:42.9077 (140.421)
17. (18) Esteban Gutierrez, Honda, 01:43.1652 (140.070)
18. (21) JR Hildebrand, Chevrolet, 01:42.9132 (140.413)
19. (7) Mikhail Aleshin, Honda, 01:43.8891 (139.094)
20. (26) Takuma Sato, Honda, 01:43.4111 (139.737)
21. (4) Conor Daly, Chevrolet, 01:44.1579 (138.736)

| , RacinToday.com Saturday, June 24 2017
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