Kyle Kirkwood flipped the script on yesterday’s Indy Pro 2000 qualifying session. The RP Motorsport rookie was chasing after a blindingly quick lap by Sting Ray Robb but fell short.
Today, it was Kirkwood, who set an unattainable mark on his 11th of 14 laps.
It’s Kirkwood’s fifth pole of the season and 10th of his Road To Indy Presented by Cooper Tires career.
Juncos Racing veteran Robb will start on the front row alongside Kirkwood. Championship leader Rasmus Lindh improved on his seventh-place qualifying effort and will begin on the inside of the second row. The Swede will be joined in the second row by RP Motorsport newcomer Artem Petrov
The last of three straight Road To Indy qualifying sessions, the Indy Pro 2000 Series, took to the track as scheduled at 10:25 am. The ambient temperature was 72F, four degrees warmer than when the USF2000 drivers kicked things off 80 minutes ago. The track temperature was 92F.
With five minutes gone in the session, it was Robb, at 66.936 seconds that held the top spot. Kirkwood went to the top of the timing screens on his fifth lap of the session and immediately ducked into pit lane.
The 2018 USF2000 Champion was joined on pit lane by the majority of the field, for adjustments and a fresh set of Cooper Tire slicks.
At the half-way point of the session, it was Kirkwood, with a lap timed at 66.6469 seconds that held the provisional pole. He was followed in the top five by Robb, Artem Petrov, Danial Frost, and Jacob Abel.
Abel and Frost were the first of the front runners to head back out on the 1.964-mile, 12-Turn road course, but the other drivers quickly followed.
As the Cooper Tires reached optimal operating temperatures, lap times started to fall. With five minutes remaining it was Robb who had the provisional pole. He was followed by Kirkwood, Thompson, Lindh, and Serravalle.
The shuffling of the order wasn’t done though. The timing screen was lit up with green and purple as drivers set their quickest laps.
With two minutes remaining, it was Kirkwood who had the quickest lap at 66.249 seconds. That was almost two-tenths quicker than Robb.
Unofficial qualifying results for Cooper Tires Indy Pro 2000 Grand Prix Presented by Allied Building Products Race #2
|RANK||CAR NO.||DRIVER||TEAM||FASTEST LAP||DIFFERENCE||TOTAL LAPS|
|1||28||Kyle Kirkwood||RP Motorsport USA||1:06.249||–.—-||14|
|2||2||Sting Ray Robb||Juncos Racing||1:06.444||0.1949||14|
|3||10||Rasmus Lindh||Juncos Racing||1:06.553||0.3041||13|
|4||5||Artem Petrov||RP Motorsport USA||1:06.614||0.3651||14|
|5||8||Parker Thompson||Abel Motorsports||1:06.642||0.3925||15|
|6||68||Danial Frost||Exclusive Autosport||1:06.690||0.4413||15|
|7||11||Antonio Serravalle||Pserra Racing/RP Motorsports USA||1:06.782||0.5329||14|
|8||51||Jacob Abel||Abel Motorsports||1:07.241||0.9916||15|
|9||90||Nikita Lastochkin||Exclusive Autosport||1:07.252||1.0025||15|
|10||27||Matt Round-Garrido||Jay Howard Driver Development/BN Racing||1:07.258||1.0093||14|
|11||7||Kory Enders||DEForce Racing||1:07.487||1.2384||13|
|12||6||Moises de la Vara||DEForce Racing||1:07.525||1.2764||14|
|13||3||Antoine Comeau||Turn 3 Motorsport||1:07.749||1.5004||15|
The first Indy Pro 2000 race of the weekend is scheduled to get the green flag at 5:25 pm, the last track activity of the a busy Saturday at the Grand Prix of Portland.