NTT INDYCAR SERIES
HARVEST GRAND PRIX
INDIANAPOLIS MOTOR SPEEDWAY ROAD COURSE
TEAM CHEVY FRONT-ROW QUOTES – RACE 1
OCTOBER 1, 2020
VEEKAY TAKES POLE POSITION FOR INDYCAR HARVEST GRAND PRIX
INDIANAPOLIS (October 1, 2020) – Rinus VeeKay scored his first career pole position in the NTT INDYCAR SERIES on Thursday with the fastest time in qualifying for Race 1 of the INDYCAR Harvest GP at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course.
VeeKay, just 20 years old and in his rookie season of NTT INDYCAR SERIES competition, set a best lap of 1:09.6903 (125.992 mph) in the No. 21 Sonax Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet. It’s the 97th earned pole position for Chevrolet in 147 races since the manufacturer returned to the series in 2012.
Josef Newgarden, defending NTT INDYCAR SERIES champion and second in driver points, will start Friday’s 85-lap race alongside VeeKay in the No. 1 Hitachi Team Penske Chevrolet. The USA Network will televise the race at 3:30 p.m. ET.
RINUS VEEKAY, NO. 21 SONAX ED CARPENTER RACING CHEVROLET – RACE ONE POLE-WINNER
“Once I got out of the pits and got temperature in my tires, I was like ‘Wow…this is the car I need.’ I drove a good lap and made no mistakes. I think there was more in it, to be honest. I just used all the grip I had. It had great balance. It was a lot different than this morning, so I think the cold track suits us. We can go for the win tomorrow.”
HOW MUCH DID YOUR EXPERIENCE IN THE ROAD TO INDY HELP YOUR ADJUSTMENT TO THE NTT INDYCAR SERIES?
“It really helped. I’ve had a few Chris Griffis tests here in Indy Lights and the Road to Indy. It’s the same temperature here and same time of year. I know what to expect when the track is cold here. I’ve driven quite a few laps now on this track, so it definitely helps me.”
WILL STARTING NEXT TO CHAMPIONSHIP CONTENDER JOSEF NEWGARDEN BE ON YOUR MIND AT THE START?
“It doesn’t matter who starts next to me. I’m going to give it all I have. Josef is a good driver and has a lot of experience. I’m a young guy and don’t know what to expect. I think that’s a good thing. I’m just going to go flat-out into Turn One.”
JOSEF NEWGARDEN, NO. 1 HITACHI TEAM PENSKE CHEVROLET – QUALIFIED SECOND FOR RACE 1
WAS YOUR TIME ON BLACK TIRES?
“I didn’t even put on red (tires). I would say that’s the luckiest we’ve been this year with the yellow flag. I just wish we could get it in a race. It’s obviously beneficial to help in a qualifying session. The car was fast on black tires. With everybody else, I felt like the car was where it needed to be. We’ll probably drop to second because we didn’t run a red lap, and the red tires are quite a bit quicker. We’re in a good spot for tomorrow in the Hitachi Chevrolet so I feel confident.”
DO YOU PAY ATTENTION TO WHERE SCOTT DIXON QUALIFIED?
“It’s just qualifying so not really. But it’s a good start for us obviously. We’ll try to convert for tomorrow now.”