IRL: Kansas: Qualifying report

Dixon turns tables on Scheckter, sins Kansas MBNA Pole KANSAS CITY, Kan., Saturday, July 5, 2003 -- Scott Dixon traded places with teammate Tomas Scheckter at just the right time July 5, winning the MBNA Pole for the Kansas Indy 300. Scheckter...

Dixon turns tables on Scheckter, sins Kansas MBNA Pole

KANSAS CITY, Kan., Saturday, July 5, 2003 -- Scott Dixon traded places with teammate Tomas Scheckter at just the right time July 5, winning the MBNA Pole for the Kansas Indy 300.

Scheckter and Dixon were the two fastest drivers, respectively, in the two practice sessions Friday and pre-qualifying practice this morning, but Dixon edged his teammate with a lap of 25.0911 seconds, 218.085 mph in the No. 9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Panoz G Force/Toyota/Firestone.

2002 Indianapolis 500 Bank One co-Rookie of the Year Scheckter was second at 25.1134, 217.892 mph in the No. 10 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Panoz G Force/Toyota/Firestone.

"The team's done a great job," Dixon said. "This week, going into qualifying, we pretty much knew it was going to be between one of us."

"I actually thought Tomas was going to get it. He's been fast all weekend. I'm not sure what happened there; we just ended up getting him. As I said, I think a lot of the credit goes to the team."

It was the third pole position of the season for Dixon, including the top spot he earned based on practice times when qualifying was rained out at Twin Ring Motegi.

Dixon's pole continued his recent domination of the IRL IndyCarÔ Series. He has won the last two races in the series, on June 15 at Pikes Peak and June 28 at Richmond, and will attempt to tie a series record with his third consecutive victory when the Kansas Indy 300 starts at 1 p.m. (EDT) Sunday. ABC and the IMS Radio Network will broadcast the race live.

Tora Takagi qualified third on the 1.5-mile Kansas oval at 25.1542, 217.538 in the No. 12 Pioneer Mo Nunn Racing Panoz G Force/Toyota/Firestone, giving that equipment package a sweep of the top three spots. Toyota-powered cars captured the top seven spots in the qualifying order.

2003 Indianapolis 500 winner Gil de Ferran was fourth at 25.3504, 215.855 in the No. 6 Marlboro Team Penske Dallara/Toyota/Firestone. De Ferran and teammate Helio Castroneves will combine to make the record 1,000th Indy-style start for Penske Racing on Sunday.

2001 Bombardier Rookie of the Year Felipe Giaffone qualified fifth at 25.3689, 215.697 in the No. 21T Hollywood Mo Nunn Racing Panoz G Force/Toyota/Firestone. Giaffone put in the strong effort despite just one qualifying lap, as Mo Nunn Racing pulled his primary car from the qualifying order due to an engine problem.

Series points leader Tony Kanaan qualified eighth at 25.3821, 215.585 in the No. 11 Team 7-Eleven Dallara/Honda/Firestone.

This is the second time this season that Target Chip Ganassi Racing has swept the front row. Scheckter and Dixon qualified 1-2, respectively, for the Bombardier 500 last month at Texas Motor Speedway.

Dixon and Scheckter also have combined to lead 702 laps this season, just 27 laps fewer than all other drivers combined this season. Dixon has three victories; Scheckter is seeking his first win.

"I'm looking forward to it," Scheckter said. "I had a good race here last year. I think we've got pretty good race cars, so if everything comes together, hopefully we'll have the same result tomorrow."

-irl-

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Tomas Scheckter , Felipe Giaffone , Helio Castroneves , Gil de Ferran , Scott Dixon , Tony Kanaan , Tora Takagi , Chip Ganassi , Mo Nunn
Teams Team Penske , Chip Ganassi Racing , Team Penske