After a disappointing “Month Of May” and a Friday full of mechanical issues, Colton Herta needed a boost to get his season back on track. The second generation drivers third pole of the season and track record lap of 1 minute, 52.003 seconds is a good start.
When Herta got out of his Deltro Energy sponsored Andretti-Steinbrenner Racing No. 98, he exclaimed to IndyCar Radio’s Rob Howden: “Wow, what a roller coaster ride this weekend.”
The provisional pole changed hands between Herta and current championship leader Kyle Kaiser a total of four times in the final five minutes of the session. Kaiser will end up starting directly behind Herta on the inside of the second row.
Matheus Leist backed up his race #1 pole with another impressive run to the outside of the front row.
After having a mechanical issues during yesterday’s qualifying session, and not turning a lap, Zachary Claman DeMelo will start directly behind his Carlin teammate Leist on the outside of the second row.
Whether they were ready for it or not, the throngs of campers surrounding the 14-Turn, 4.014-mile Road America road course had a chorus of turbo-charged Mazda 2.0L power plants of the Indy Lights series serve as their alarm clock.
The 14 entries took to the Road America circuit at 7:50 a.m for their second 30-minute qualifying session of the weekend. The ambient temperature was a mild 62F and the track temperature was 74F, which were drastically different conditions than the first qualifying session which occurred at 2:30 p.m. yesterday afternoon.
At the half-way point of the session, the majority of drivers were on pit road making adjustments before putting on new Cooper Tire slicks. The provisional pole sitter was Alberico, who’s quickest lap of 1:52.9181 was under the track record set by Zach Veach last year. The Carlin veteran was followed closely by his two teammates Zachary Claman DeMelo and Matheus Leist. The Andretti Autosport duo of Ryan Norman and Colton Herta rounded out the top five at the half-way point.
With 10 minutes left in the session, all 14 cars were back on track to attempt to try and improve their positions.
It took the drivers a couple of laps to get heat in their fresh Cooper Tire rubber, but with five minutes left in the session the lap times started to drop drastically.
A dozen of the 14 drivers were able to best the track record set by Zach Veach last year.
Mazda Indy Lights Grand Prix of Road America Presented by Allied Building Products Qualifying Results for Race #2
|RANK||CAR NO||DRIVER||TEAM||QUICK LAP||GAP|
|1||98||Colton Herta||Andretti Steinbrenner Racing||1:52.003||–.—-|
|3||18||Kyle Kaiser||Juncos Racing||1:52.109||0.1051|
|4||13||Zachary Claman De Melo||Carlin||1:52.333||0.3294|
|5||5||Santi Urrutia||Belardi Auto Racing||1:52.404||0.4003|
|7||9||Aaron Telitz||Belardi Auto Racing||1:52.479||0.4756|
|8||27||Nico Jamin||Andretti Autosport||1:52.484||0.4805|
|9||31||Nicolas Dapero||Juncos Racing||1:52.555||0.5521|
|10||51||Shelby Blackstock||Belardi Auto Racing||1:52.627||0.6233|
|11||2||Juan Piedrahita||Team Pelfrey||1:52.853||0.8499|
|12||28||Dalton Kellett||Andretti Autosport||1:52.883||0.8794|
|14||48||Ryan Norman||Andretti Autosport||1:53.129||1.1255|
The first Indy Lights race of the weekend rolls off at high noon. Here is the starting line-up for that race:
|3||48||Ryan Norman||Andretti Autosport|
|4||18||Kyle Kaiser||Juncos Racing|
|5||27||Nico Jamin||Andretti Autosport|
|6||28||Dalton Kellett||Andretti Autosport|
|7||51||Shelby Blackstock||Belardi Auto Racing|
|8||2||Juan Piedrahita||Team Pelfrey|
|9||31||Nicolas Dapero||Juncos Racing|
|10||5||Santi Urrutia||Belardi Auto Racing|
|11||9||Aaron Telitz||Belardi Auto Racing|
|13||98||Colton Herta||Andretti Steinbrenner Racing|
|14||13||Zachary Claman De Melo||Carlin|