Sato Runs Fourth for Honda in Iowa Qualifying
- Takuma Sato leads Honda qualifying effort with fourth-place run at Iowa Speedway
- Defending race winner James Hinchcliffe to start fifth
- Honda drivers claim seven of top 10 qualifying spots
NEWTON, Iowa (July 19, 2019) – Takuma Sato led the Honda field today at Iowa Speedway in qualifying for Saturday night’s Iowa 300. The 2017 Indianapolis 500 winner, who scored his first IndyCar Series pole at Iowa in 2011, will start fourth as the Rahal Letterman Lanigan driver seeks his second victory of the 2019 season.
Last year’s Iowa winner, James Hinchcliffe, will start fifth in his Arrow Schmidt Peterson Motorsports Honda, with championship contender Alexander Rossi sixth for Andretti Autosport, as Honda drivers claimed seven of the top 10 starting positions in the 22-car field.
Sato’s teammate, Graham Rahal, will start from the inside of the fourth row, seventh, with defending series champion Scott Dixon eighth after today’s single-car qualifying runs. Three-time Iowa Speedway race winner Ryan Hunter-Reay with start ninth, while rookie Marcus Ericsson led the rookie field and will start 10th in his Arrow Schmidt Peterson Motorsports Honda.
Saturday’s 300-lap race, the first short-oval race of the 2019 NTT IndyCar Series season, starts at 7 p.m. EDT, with live coverage on the NBC Sports Network.
Takuma Sato (Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing Honda) Qualified fourth: “Today, the first [qualifying] lap was pretty good, but on the second lap the car was sliding all over the place. But the car was pretty good. Iowa is always special for me. This is the place where I earned by first [IndyCar] pole position. And it’s always exciting to race here. There is no rest throughout the 300 laps, and it is always a hard battle. We had a good race here last year [finishing third], so there’s no reason to think we shouldn’t have a good one this year, too.”
NTT IndyCar Series Iowa 300
Circuit: Iowa Speedway (0.894-mile oval) Newton, Iowa
2018 Winner: James Hinchcliffe (Arrow Schmidt Peterson Motorsports) 149.636 mph average
Weather: Sunny, hot, 92 degrees F
Top-10 Qualifying Results:
|1.||Simon Pagenaud||Team Penske||Chevrolet||180.073|
|2.||Will Power||Team Penske||Chevrolet||179.589|
|3.||Josef Newgarden||Team Penske||Chevrolet||179.449|
|4.||Takuma Sato||Rahal Letterman Lanigan||Honda||177.646|
|5.||James Hinchcliffe||Arrow Schmidt Peterson||Honda||176.200|
|6.||Alexander Rossi||Andretti Autosport||Honda||176.057|
|7.||Graham Rahal||Rahal Letterman Lanigan||Honda||175.857|
|8.||Scott Dixon||Chip Ganassi Racing||Honda||175.725|
|9.||Ryan Hunter-Reay||Andretti Autosport||Honda||175.618|
|10.||Marcus Ericsson-R||Arrow Schmidt Peterson||Honda||175.578|
Other Honda Results
|11.||Colton Herta||Harding Steinbrenner Racing||Honda||175.346|
|12.||Santino Ferrucci-R||Dale Coyne Racing||Honda||175.316|
|15.||Felix Rosenqvist-R||Chip Ganassi Racing||Honda||174.237|
|18.||Marco Andretti||Andretti Autosport||Honda||173.044|
|20.||Zach Veach||Andretti Autosport||Honda||171.626|
|21.||Sebastien Bourdais||DCR with Vasser-Sullivan||Honda||171.390|