BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (April 21, 2018) – Sebastien Bourdais, winner of the season-opening Grand Prix of St. Petersburg, led the way for Honda today in Verizon IndyCar Series qualifying, and will start Sunday’s Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama from the inside of the second row, third.
Bourdais will share the second row of the starting grid at Barber Motorsports Park with fourth-qualifying Ryan Hunter-Reay. James Hinchcliffe and Scott Dixon also advanced to the Firestone Fast Six final qualifying round, and will start fifth and sixth, respectively.
Honda drivers captured nine of the top 12 positions during the three sessions of “knockout” qualifying. Marco Andretti will start seventh after his best qualifying result of 2018, with last week’s winner at Long Beach, Alexander Rossi, completing the fourth row of the starting grid, eighth. Robert Wickens led the rookie field for Honda in 10th, followed by fellow Honda rookie Zach Veach, 11th. Series sophomore Ed Jones rounds out the top 12 for Honda. Sunday’s 90-lap Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama starts at 3 p.m. EDT, with live television coverage on the NBC Sports Network.
Sebastien Bourdais (Dale Coyne Racing with Vasser-Sullivan Honda) qualified third for Sunday’s Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama: “It was almost perfect. I got every little bit of it I had and the SealMaster Honda was good but obviously not quite good enough – just a tenth [of a second] off [pole]. It’s just super, super tight. I couldn’t dial out the last little bit of understeer. It is what it is, but I’m pretty happy. I think you can win from anywhere if it rains. I think it will be pretty exciting. Starting from the front always helps, spray and all, so hopefully we can just get a clear run and get [a good result].”
Verizon IndyCar Series Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama
Circuit: Barber Motorsports Park (1.8-mile road course) Birmingham, Ala.
2017 Winner: Josef Newgarden (Team Penske) 108.809 mph average
Weather: Sunny, warm, 74 degrees F
Top-12 Qualifying Results:
|1.||Josef Newgarden||Team Penske||Chevrolet||1:07.4413||mph average|
|2.||Will Power||Team Penske||Chevrolet||1:07.4541||+0.0128|
|3.||Sebastien Bourdais||Dale Coyne Racing with Vasser-Sullivan||Honda||1:07.5337||Fast Six Final Qualifying|
|4.||Ryan Hunter-Reay||Andretti Autosport||Honda||1:07.7807||Fast Six Final Qualifying|
|5.||James Hinchcliffe||Schmidt Peterson Motorsports||Honda||1:07.9472||Fast Six Final Qualifying|
|6.||Scott Dixon||Chip Ganassi Racing||Honda||1:08.0303||Fast Six Final Qualifying|
|7.||Marco Andretti||Andretti Autosport||Honda||1:07.6027||2nd Round Qualifying|
|8.||Alexander Rossi||Andretti Autosport||Honda||1:07.7488||2nd Round Qualifying|
|9.||Simon Pagenaud||Team Penske||Chevrolet||1:07.8409||2nd Round Qualifying|
|10.||Robert Wickens-R||Schmidt Peterson Motorsports||Honda||1:07.8455||2nd Round Qualifying|
|11.||Zach Veach-R||Andretti Autosport||Honda||1:07.9894||2nd Round Qualifying|
|12.||Ed Jones||Chip Ganassi Racing||Honda||1:08.4386||2nd Round Qualifying|
Other Honda Results
|15.||Graham Rahal||Rahal Letterman Lanigan||Honda||1:08.1038||1st Round, Group 1|
|16.||Zachary Claman DeMelo-R||Dale Coyne Racing||Honda||1:08.5531||1st Round, Group 2|
|18.||Takuma Sato||Rahal Letterman Lanigan||Honda||1:08.5676||1st Round, Group 2|