BALTIMORE, Md. – Ed Carpenter and his ECR/Fuzzy’s Vodka Chrevrolet squad made some impressive improvements Saturday in qualifications for Sunday’s Grand Prix of Baltimore, the 16th stop in the 19-race IZOD IndyCar Series.
Carpenter, who started eighth in Baltimore last year, was hoping for another transfer to the second qualifying round Saturday in the hot, humid conditions. Again, the 2.0-mile, 12-turn streets circuit near the Inner Harbor of Charm City was a difficult one to negotiate for many racers. A variety of drivers found the concrete walls, tire barriers and runoff areas during both practice and qualifying rounds.
Carpenter had to settle for tenth in the second qualifying round after a time of one minute, 20.5694 seconds, some two seconds quicker than his Friday clockings. The Butler graduate is scheduled to start 20th in Sunday’s 75-mile feature
Scott Dixon won the pole position Saturday in a superb last-lap effort over Will Power, Simon Pagenaud, Justin Wilson, Josef Newgarden and rookie Tristin Vautier.
The Grand Prix of Baltimore will be shown live Sunday on NBC Sports Network beginning at 2:00 p.m. EDT. The green flag set to fall at 2:40 p.m. EDT.
“We had an improvement from our previous times,” said Ed Carpenter, the Indy 500 pole winner. “We closed the gap on the leaders which is good. We had some fortune today with some guys making mistakes in our group. I think we made some good changes going into that session.
I’m hopeful we are getting on to something for the race. There is definitely some potential for a lot of carnage in the race, especially the way things have gone in practice and qualifying.
We need to keep working on getting a good race pace for here. We are just hoping for a clean race on Sunday. There are just so many places on this track that can create problems. The name of the game is to stay as clean as possible.”