VeeKay takes Alabama Grand Prix pole at Barber


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Rinus VeeKay took pole position for the Grand Prix of Alabama at Barber Motorsports Park, as Josef Newgarden, the current IndyCar championship leader, missed the final stage of qualifying and will start seventh.

VeeKay started the day off with the fastest time in the second practice session. After advancing through rounds one and two, VeeKay leapt over defending race winner Álex Palou to claim his first pole in over a year, setting a fastest lap of 1’06.251 around the 3.8 kilometre circuit.

Despite a small mistake at the start of his final flying lap, McLaren SP driver Pato O’Ward still went quick enough to qualify second, sharing the front row with VeeKay. Palou will start third as he looks for his first win of the year – from the same position that he won from last year at this venue, no less – next to St. Petersburg GP winner Scott McLaughlin in fourth.

Alexander Rossi was unsure if he’d even be able to run in qualifying after a crash in second practice, but he made it all the way into Fast Six qualifying and will start fifth, next to Felix Rosenqvist in sixth.

Newgarden, the points leader and a three-time winner at Barber Motorsports Park, will start seventh next to Romain Grosjean in eighth, Graham Rahal in ninth, and Colton Herta – the fastest driver in Friday’s first practice session – in tenth.

Callum Ilott and Juncos Hollinger Racing advanced to the second round of qualifying for the first time; Ilott will start eleventh as the top rookie, ahead of Marcus Ericsson, who spun off into the gravel at turn nine at the end of round two qualifying, and brought out a red flag as the timer hit zero, resulting in the deletion of his fastest lap.

Further back in the field, Scott Dixon will start 13th as he vies for his first win at the circuit, and Will Power, a four-time pole winner at Barber, starts down in 19th place.

Sunday’s Grand Prix of Alabama will run over 90 laps. The green flag will fly at 6.15pm UK time.

Grand Prix of Alabama qualifying results:

Position Car Driver Team Engine
1 21 Rinus VeeKay Carpenter Chevrolet
2 5 Pato O’Ward McLaren SP Chevrolet
3 10 Alex Palou Ganassi Honda
4 3 Scott McLaughlin Penske Chevrolet
5 27 Alexander Rossi Andretti Honda
6 7 Felix Rosenqvist McLaren SP Chevrolet
7 2 Josef Newgarden Penske Chevrolet
8 28 Romain Grosjean Andretti Honda
9 15 Graham Rahal RLL Honda
10 26 Colton Herta Andretti Honda
11 77 Callum Ilott Juncos Hollinger Chevrolet
12 8 Marcus Ericsson Ganassi Honda
13 9 Scott Dixon Ganassi Honda
14 30 Christian Lundgaard RLL Honda
15 45 Jack Harvey RLL Honda
16 6 Helio Castroneves Meyer Shank Honda
17 51 Takuma Sato Coyne/RWR Honda
18 18 David Malukas Coyne/HMD Honda
19 12 Will Power Penske Chevrolet
20 29 Devlin DeFrancesco Andretti Steinbrenner Honda
21 14 Kyle Kirkwood Foyt Chevrolet
22 20 Conor Daly Carpenter Chevrolet
23 4 Dalton Kellett Foyt Chevrolet
24 60 Simon Pagenaud Meyer Shank Honda
25 11 Tatiana Calderon Foyt Chevrolet
26 48 Jimmie Johnson Ganassi Honda

Author information

RJ O'Connell
Motorsport has been a lifelong interest for RJ, both virtual and ‘in the carbon’, since childhood. RJ picked up motorsports writing as a hobby...

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  • 4 comments on “VeeKay takes Alabama Grand Prix pole at Barber”

    1. Probably been said already by others, but what a great circuit. Fast, sweeping and undulating. Doesn’t have all the glitzy advertising manicuring you see at F1 venues, but as a driving experience, it looks top notch.

      1. It’s an amazing track indeed! One can only dream of F1 racing on such.
        Another one like it is Sonoma that IndyCar took off the calendar this year unfortunately.

    2. Veekay did a great job, at a very challenging track. Well done. Looking forward to tomorrows race.

    3. Jason Lashua
      1st May 2022, 14:12

      I would love to have watched this but evidently you can only watch it on Peacock, as if NBC has something better to show on a Saturday since basically indycar is their only sport (and NBC Sports is gone)

    Comments are closed.