Vernay earns third pole at Sonoma

J.K. Vernay notched his third Firestone Indy Lights pole of the season after touring the 2.303-mile Infineon Raceway in 83.5582 seconds. Vernay earned the pole at Barber Motorsports Park and Toronto and went on to victory, leading both races flag...

J.K. Vernay notched his third Firestone Indy Lights pole of the season after touring the 2.303-mile Infineon Raceway in 83.5582 seconds. Vernay earned the pole at Barber Motorsports Park and Toronto and went on to victory, leading both races flag to flag.

"That was a great battle," said series points leader Vernay. "I have to thank the team. The car was great again. After a disappointing weekend at Mid-Ohio, I wanted to be quick here."

Vernay set his best lap with several minutes remaining in the session, allowing Charlie Kimball and James Hinchcliffe time to raise the mark.

"It was really tight with James (Hinchcliffe)," Vernay said. "We are always fighting for half a tenth."

As it turned out, Charlie Kimball missed the pole by 0.0395 of a second. This is Kimball third front row start this season.

"We've been fighting the sun all year," Kimball reported. "When it gets hot, we struggle a bit more. We were hoping the marine layer would stay a bit longer, but four hundredths, I'll take that."

After setting the best time in both practice sessions, Kimball noted. "It's a lot of fun to drive here when the car is good."

James Hinchcliffe will start third. Hinchcliffe said he made some changes between the two practice sessions but went back on the changes for qualifying. "It was like starting from scratch," he said.

Traffic was an issue as Hinchcliffe noted that "the tires fall off after two laps and we couldn't get two clean laps. If we had we might have gotten the pole, but that's the nature of qualifying."

Gustavo Yacaman's fourth place qualifying position matched his season best qualifying effort when he started on the second row at Toronto.

"We struggled in practice," said Yacaman, "but we've got a pretty strong car. We have a pretty good race pace."

Yacaman was seventh fastest after two practice sessions. In qualifying he trimmed nearly seven-tenths of a second from his best practice lap.

Dan Clarke rounded out the top five followed by Sebastian Saavedra, Pippa Mann and Adrian Campos. Alex Ellis and Philip Major were ninth and tenth, respectively.

Be part of something big

Write a comment
Show comments
About this article
Series Indy Lights
Drivers Charlie Kimball , Adrian Campos , James Hinchcliffe , Sebastian Saavedra , Gustavo Yacaman , Philip Major , Dan Clarke