Sonoma: Firestone Motorsports qualifying report

"Firestone Fast Six" Qualifying Results (time): 1. Dario Franchitti (01:16:7987); 2. Ryan Briscoe (01:16:8485); 3. Helio Castroneves (01:16:8702); 4. Marco Andretti (01:17:0524); 5. Hideki Mutoh (01:17:2055); 6. Graham Rahal ...

"Firestone Fast Six" Qualifying Results (time): 1. Dario Franchitti (01:16:7987); 2. Ryan Briscoe (01:16:8485); 3. Helio Castroneves (01:16:8702); 4. Marco Andretti (01:17:0524); 5. Hideki Mutoh (01:17:2055); 6. Graham Rahal (01:17:3885).

Firestone qualifying highlight: Firestone Racing brought primary and alternate Firestone Firehawk tire specifications that are all-new to Infineon Raceway, so the gap between the two specs was unknown going into today's qualifying session. The Firestone alternate tire proved to be more than one second faster than the primary specification and provided drivers with an extraordinary amount of grip. A chart detailing each drivers' tire selection is below.

Qualifying temperatures: Track temperatures ranged from 108o.-114o. F (42o.-45o. C) and ambient temperatures from 69o.-71o. F (20o.-21o. C).

From pole winner Dario Franchitti, #10 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Dallara/Honda/Firestone: "The Target car was really good straight off of the truck today. Scott [Dixon] did the testing for our team here last week, so I have to thank him for his hard work. Firestone brought a different tire for the race than they brought to the test, and that worked great for us. My only issue was that the Firestone red alternate tires have so much grip that the gearbox couldn't keep up with the downshifts. But we won't have that problem tomorrow."

From Al Speyer, Executive Director, Firestone Racing: "Congratulations to Dario and his Target team for pulling out a great lap there at the end to claim the pole position for the last road course on this year's IndyCar Series schedule. Going into this event, the gap between the primary and alternate tires was a mystery, and with the difference at over a second, the alternates proved to be the tire of choice for qualifying. That bodes well for an exciting race tomorrow, with varying tire strategies providing drivers with greater opportunities to pass on this twisty track."

-credit: firestone motorsports

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Helio Castroneves , Dario Franchitti , Graham Rahal , Ryan Briscoe , Marco Andretti , Chip Ganassi , Hideki Mutoh
Teams Chip Ganassi Racing