Arie Luyendyk Jr claims Indy Lights pole

AFS Andretti Green Racing's Arie Luyendyk sweated out a mid-afternoon thunderstorm that threatened to cancel Firestone Indy Lights qualifying at Iowa Speedway before claiming pole for Saturday's Jeld-Wen 100 race. "I was afraid the rain would...

AFS Andretti Green Racing's Arie Luyendyk sweated out a mid-afternoon thunderstorm that threatened to cancel Firestone Indy Lights qualifying at Iowa Speedway before claiming pole for Saturday's Jeld-Wen 100 race.

"I was afraid the rain would wash out qualifying and we would start on points," said Arie afterwards of a decidedly bad turn of events if it had come to pass. Luyendyk was quickest for much of the day among the twenty-two Indy Lights competitors in his red No. 26 Dallara.

"I have to thank my team at AFS Andretti Green. The preparation of the car was phenomenal. It handled perfectly, all around the bottom of the track wherever I wanted to go."

Luyendyk's 160.397 mph two-lap average gave the veteran racer his fourth Indy Lights pole of his career, and bumped Panther Racing's Dillon Battistini (159.763 mph) aside to the outer spot on the front row.

Lueyndyk previously won pole twice at Michigan International Speedway and once at Texas Speedway.

Team Moore's Jeff Simmons and Milwaukee 100 winner Bobby Wilson of Team E make up row two for tomorrow's 4:15 CDT start here in tiny Newton, Iowa.

Brent Sherman, Ana 'Bia' Beatriz, J R Hildebrand, Raphael Matos, Franck Perera and Pablo Donoso round out the first five rows of starters.

Indy Lights Series points leader Richard Antinucci suffered a poor qualifying effort and will start on the outside of row seven in fourteenth.

Mark Olson of Michael Crawford Motorsports did not take an attempt, and will bring up the rear of the grid when the green flag falls.

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About this article
Series Indy Lights
Drivers Arie Luyendyk , Brent Sherman , Jeff Simmons , Richard Antinucci , Pablo Donoso , Bobby Wilson , Mark Olson , Dillon Battistini
Teams Panther Racing