Newgarden snatches last-second Detroit Grand Prix pole


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Josef Newgarden took pole position for the IndyCar Detroit Grand Prix thanks to a last-second effort in the Fast Six stage of qualifying.

Newgarden will lead the field of 26 cars to the green flag in tomorrow’s 70-lap race, the final Detroit Grand Prix to be held at the Belle Isle Street Circuit as the race will move to the International Riverfront district in downtown Detroit next year.

His best lap of 1’15.215 came right after the chequered flag fell, knocking Takuma Sato off the provisional pole position. Newgarden becomes the seventh different pole winner in seven races this season.

Sato will line up second, sharing the front row with Newgarden. The two Meyer Shank cars of Simon Pagenaud and Hélio Castroneves will start third, and fourth, respectively. McLaren SP driver Pato O’Ward will start fifth, and rookie David Malukas was the story of qualifying, making the Fast Six for the first time and ending up sixth on the grid just days after controversially missing out on the Indy 500 Rookie of the Year award.

Indianapolis 500 winner and IndyCar Series points leader Marcus Ericsson will start eighth in car number eight, sharing the fourth row with Colton Herta, who qualified seventh. An all-Scott fifth row follows, with Scott Dixon in ninth, and Scott McLaughlin in tenth.

Transfer market protagonist Alexander Rossi, who agreed to join McLaren SP next season, starts 11th. Romain Grosjean had a hard crash through turns 12 and 13 to end round two of qualifying: The resulting red flag caused the deletion of his two fastest laps, meaning Grosjean will start 12th.

The other major player in this week’s IndyCar silly season, Kyle Kirkwood, qualified 15th after leading the way in first practice. However, he crashed out of second practice earlier today, and will now go on and race in the IMSA SportsCar Championship tonight with a minor injury to his right hand – before starting tomorrow’s race.

Further back in the pack, Felix Rosenqvist was penalized during round one of qualifying for impeding Jimmie Johnson as he exited pit lane for his final attempt. His fastest laps in the session were deleted, and he will start from the final row of the grid in 25th. Dalton Kellett did not take part in qualifying after a heavy crash at the end of second practice, and because of a six-place grid penalty for an unapproved engine change at the Indy 500, Kellett will start 26th.

Green flag time for the Detroit Grand Prix is tomorrow at 20:45 BST.

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Grand Prix of Detroit qualifying results

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


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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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1 comments on “Newgarden snatches last-second Detroit Grand Prix pole”

  1. Not just an All-Scott 5th row, but All-Kiwi as well!

    Great qualifying effort by the Coyne pair and it’ll be interesting to see if it carries over to the race.

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