Indianapolis 500 champion Takuma Sato completed a dramatic day of Verizon IndyCar Series qualifying Saturday at Pocono Raceway, claiming the pole for Honda in the final run of the afternoon, and just minutes after teammate Ryan Hunter-Reay crashed heavily in Turn 3.
After drawing the final spot in the qualifying order, Sato was waiting in pit lane as his Andretti Autosport teammate, Ryan Hunter-Reay, spun entering the final corner, making heavy contact with both the outside and inside SAFER barriers. He exited the car under his own power, but was later transported to a local hospital for further evaluation. As the next – and last – driver to qualify, Sato completed a flawless run of 219.639 mph over two laps of the Pocono tri-oval to claim his second pole of 2017, and the seventh of his career.
Chip Ganassi Racing teammates Charlie Kimball and Tony Kanaan claimed the second row of the starting grid in their qualifying runs, and will start third and fourth, respectively. Alexander Rossi will start sixth in his Andretti Autosport Honda, with Graham Rahal seventh. Scott Dixon and Max Chilton rounded out the top 10 for Honda. Television coverage of Sunday’s 200-lap race, the second 500-mile oval race of 2017, starts at 2 p.m. EDT on the NBC Sports Network.
|Video by||Honda Racing/HPD|