Second-Row Start for Wickens, Honda in Texas
- Robert Wickens qualifies fourth, best oval start of his rookie season
- Honda drivers claim six of top 10 qualifying spots
- Saturday night contest will be third oval race of 2018
FORT WORTH, Texas (June 8, 2018) – Robert Wickens continues to impress in his Verizon IndyCar Series rookie season, as he led Honda qualifiers today at Texas Motor Speedway and will start Saturday night’s race from the outside of the second row, fourth.
It is the best oval track qualifying performance to date for Wickens, who also qualified on the pole at the season-opening Grand Prix of St. Petersburg, a temporary street circuit. In the previous two oval races this season, Wickens qualified 18th at the Indianapolis 500 and sixth at ISM Raceway.
Continuing his own run of impressive performances this year, Sebastien Bourdais will start fifth in his Dale Coyne Racing with Vasser-Sullivan Honda. Scott Dixon, winner of the first of two races in Detroit last weekend, qualified seventh, followed by Long Beach race winner Alexander Rossi, eighth. Takuma Sato will start ninth, with Sunday Detroit winner Ryan Hunter-Reay 10th, as Honda drivers claimed six of the top ten speeds in single-car qualifying today.
Saturday night’s 248-lap race, the third oval and second Saturday night race of the 2018 Verizon IndyCar Series season, starts at 8 p.m. EDT, with live coverage on the NBC Sports Network.
Robert Wickens (Schmidt Peterson Motorsports Honda) Qualified 4th: “Every day in IndyCar is a new adventure, but we keep coming to each [race] weekend with great cars. I think today is the perfect example. I’m definitely not comfortable on a superspeedway yet, but everyone on the Lucas Oil car is doing a good job. We were quick in practice, and now we’re starting fourth … Can’t complain about that.”
Sebastien Bourdais (Dale Coyne Racing with Vasser-Sullivan Honda) Qualified 5th: “Overall, it was a pretty good day. The SealMaster Honda was good this morning in practice, and it was good in qualifying. It’s very hot, so the car wasn’t as stuck as it was in practice. We lost a lot of grip because the track was so much hotter, close to 140 (degrees), but it’s the same for everyone. The guys gave me a good car. I was pretty comfortable with the balance. I had a little understeer, but I knew what I was going to get before the qualifying run. A good run, so pretty [we’re] happy.”