CHAMPCAR/CART: Houston: Team Australia Saturday report

POWER GRABS POLE POSITION IN HOUSTON Team Australia star Will Power will start the Champ Car Grand Prix of Houston from pole position after final qualifying fastest for Round 3 of the Champ Car World Series in Texas today. Power earned his ...

POWER GRABS POLE POSITION IN HOUSTON

Team Australia star Will Power will start the Champ Car Grand Prix of Houston from pole position after final qualifying fastest for Round 3 of the Champ Car World Series in Texas today.

Power earned his third pole in five races in Houston in the #5 Aussie Vineyards Team Australia DP01. Power was originally credited with second in today's final qualifying session but was later promoted to pole position when rival Sebastien Bourdais was penalised for blocking Power in qualifying.

Bourdais' fastest lap was disallowed as a result, promoting Power to pole and dropping the Frenchman to third. The Australian driver will start from the front row of the grid alongside Justin Wilson for the Houston street race, as Power aims to defend his points lead in the championship standings.

Team Australia rookie Simon Pagenaud will start from seventh in the Aussie Vineyards Team Australia DP01. Pagenaud was the third fastest rookie in qualifying today as the reigning Atlantic champion continues to impress with his speed in only his third Champ Car event.

WHAT THEY HAD TO SAY --

Will Power -- #5 Aussie Vineyards Team Australia DP01

"We are very happy," said Power.

"Obviously it's not the best way to get pole, because Sebastien did have the quickest lap, but we were on a hot lap and he blocked us.

"I lost my quickest lap yesterday for blocking Justin Wilson and the rules are the rules.

"I just want to thank the guys because they gave me a great, quick car and now we just need to win another race."

Simon Pagenaud -- #15 Aussie Vineyards Team Australia DP01

"We had some issues right at the beginning from the warm-up until the end," said Pagenaud.

"We had the car to do it for sure. I thought I could do it on the last lap, but unfortunately the red came out.

"The Aussie Vineyards car is right there. Everyone has been doing a great job, my engineer Mike Pawlowski and my whole Team Australia crew.

It will happen for us one day. I think it will be good to start for us tomorrow and have a different strategy and we can show up front for the race and hopefully bring the team home a podium."

Derrick Walker -- Team Australia Co-Owner

"With or without the penalty of Sebastien, we obviously felt that we had a lap that would beat him.

"As is happening in the series now, it's getting so competitive that everyone is fighting for every little scrap, that it comes down to a judgment call on part of Tony Cotman to decide who is on the pole.

"Fortunately for us, the data proved our case and Will earned his pole justly.

"As for Simon, not the best day, the car at different times was a front row car and at times was an unreliable car.

"We had a few issues with the reliability of the DP01. We have worked through them. Qualifying was not representative of where he should be. He's got a good race car and he is starting pretty well up front, so I think Simon is in a pretty good position to have a great finish."

Craig Gore -- Team Australia Co-Owner

"Will continues to do a great job," said Gore.

"He and the Aussie Vineyards team are really on top of their game and the Team Australia car continues to be fast in every session.

"He's now got a very good chance of getting his second race win and keeping his championship lead this weekend in Houston.

"Will lost his best lap for blocking in Friday's session and it's good to see that Champ Car is consistent with its penalties.

"Simon is right up there as well and I know he is concentrating hard on getting a solid finish under his belt this weekend.

-credit: teamaus

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Justin Wilson , Will Power , Simon Pagenaud