St. Pete: KVT/Team Australia qualifying report

POWER SENSATIONAL SECOND IN QUALIFYING AT ST PETERSBURG Will Power has put the IndyCar Series paddock on notice by qualifying second for only his second ever IndyCar Series race at the Honda Grand Prix of St Petersburg in Florida today. Power...

POWER SENSATIONAL SECOND IN QUALIFYING AT ST PETERSBURG

Will Power has put the IndyCar Series paddock on notice by qualifying second for only his second ever IndyCar Series race at the Honda Grand Prix of St Petersburg in Florida today.

Power put the #8 Aussie Vineyards - Team Australia Honda/Dallara/Firestone on the top of the timesheets in the opening two segments of qualifying in an outstanding effort, before clinching a front row starting position for tomorrow's race in the final shootout for pole, the Firestone Fast Six.

The Australian's reaction to the feat showed just how determined Power is for success in the newly unified IndyCar Series. Despite only driving a Honda-powered Dallara IndyCar on one previous occasion on a road course in a test at Sebring, Power was disappointed that he did not get pole position, which went to 2004 IndyCar Series Champion Tony Kanaan.

Power was the fastest car in his group in qualifying in the new knockout Peak Motor Oil Pole Qualifying road/street course system and progressed into the next segment of 12 cars. From there the 27-year-old again qualified fastest, moving into the final six-car shootout for the pole -- the Firestone Fast Six.

In the final shootout Power was second, only 0.0774 behind Kanaan's time. Power's time in the second segment of qualifying would have easily put him on pole, leading to the Toowoomba-born driver feeling slightly frustrated he did not bring home the pole in only his second IndyCar race.

Earlier in the day Power was 14th in final practice, completing 15 laps in the Aussie Vineyards car working on race set-up.

WHAT THE TEAM HAD TO SAY --

Will Power - #8 Aussie Vineyards - Team Australia Honda/Dallara/Firestone

"My original goal was just to get into the Firestone Fast Six," said Power.

"But, now I am a little disappointed that we didn't get the pole considering the time we posted in the previous session. But, overall I'm happy to be on the front row.

"It's very good for Aussie Vineyards and for KV Racing Technology. Most importantly, it's a payback to the team.

"They've been working so hard over the last month - working long hours and they haven't been seeing their families - so I 'm very happy for them."

Craig Gore - Team Australia

"Will is a little frustrated he did not match his time earlier in qualifying and get the pole, but there is no doubt that this is a simply outstanding effort," said Gore.

"The amount of time the team has had the car and the seat time that Will has had in a Dallara is only a fraction of the regular IndyCar teams, so to set the fastest time of the day and get the Aussie Vineyards car on the front row shows what Will is capable of.

"Will correctly pointed to the crew at KV Racing Technology as the heroes behind this result. The crew working on the Aussie Vineyards car have been putting in extraordinary hours preparing and learning these cars and they should be extremely proud that their car was the fastest car in the field today.

"Everyone is right behind Will and the Aussie Vineyards car and we cannot wait to see tomorrow's race."

-credit: kvt/ta

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Will Power
Teams KV Racing Technology