IZOD IndyCar World Championship – Las Vegas Motor Speedway
QUALIFYING NOTES/QUOTES – Friday, October 14, 2011
TELEMUNDO DRIVER SERVIA NARROWLY MISSED POLE AND WILL START SECOND FOR THE IZOD INDYCAR WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS; SPROTT DRIVER HINCHCLIFFE TO START 14TH
POLE: Tony Kanaan 2-lap avg. speed of 222.078 mph (L1: 25.0340, L2: 25.0242)
2nd: Oriol Servia 2-lap avg. speed of 222.061 mph (L1: 25.0320, L2: 25.0299)
14th: James Hinchcliffe 2-lap avg. speed of 220.701 mph (L1: 25.1848, L2: 25.1855)
Oriol Servia, No. 2 Telemundo Dallara/Honda/Firestone: "We got a two today so hopefully we get a one tomorrow. The Telemundo car was awesome. We were up there in every session and it just shows the car was good. Front row is the best place to start for a race as crazy as this one is going to be so I am very happy with our position and I think we have a great shot at it (win) on Sunday.
"I expect four wide, and I'm not joking. I think there's going to be a lot of four‑wide action. I think regularly on other ovals it's two wide, here it's going to be three, and when it's going to get exciting it's going to be four. It's not just going to be one row like that, there's going to be many, many rows two, three wide. I expect it to be really hairy and dangerous and in a way exciting for the fans at home watching on TV and the ones here. I'm sure we're going to give you a lot of good material for you guys to write about, and hopefully everybody will be safe at the end and have a clean, safe race."
FAST FACTS: Missed winning pole by 0.0037. Third front row start of the year (2nd – Loudon; 3rd – Indy)... Will be his third race here and second with NHR. In 2005, he started second, led six laps and finished second to teammate Bourdais to bring NHR a 1-2 finish (lost by less than a few feet). In 2004 he started 18th, led four laps and finished 12th with Dale Coyne Racing... Servia, a native of Catalonia, Spain, has made 31 starts for NHR which include his first Indy car win (Montreal 2005) and pole (Surfers Paradise, Australia 2005) as well as a total of nine top-three finishes. In 2005, Servia replaced NHR driver Bruno Junqueira, who suffered a season-ending injury at the Indy 500 on May 29, and then went on to finish second to teammate Sebastien Bourdais in the point standings after 11/13 events with the team. Servia returned to NHR in 2009 for four races with a season-best finish of fourth at Twin Ring Motegi... Is FOURTH in series point standings with 425.
James Hinchcliffe, No. 06 Sprott Dallara/Honda/Firestone: "We're in the top half of the grid which is good. It was a weird qualifying session; the field is pretty mixed up. I was hoping we could stay in the top 10 but we're in the seventh row so were still in the hunt. Since we've been here our car has felt better in traffic than it has by ourselves. We're going to put our heads together and make sure we bolt on the best race set up that we've got. We proved in Kentucky that we can race our way through even some of the top guys. It's going to be about having a problem-free race, stay out of trouble, make smart decisions and a lot of its going to be about being in the right place at the right time. I'm reasonably happy with where we are."
FAST FACTS: This will be his first race here. His highest oval start of the season is third in Kentucky and his highest finish is fourth in New Hampshire... Toronto native Hinchcliffe, 24, finished second in the 2010 Firestone Indy Lights season standings after three wins and four poles. In total he earned eight podium finishes in 13 races...Is ranked 12th with a total of 302 points and is six points ahead of Hildebrand (296) for Sunoco Rookie of the Year despite missing the season-opener (missed St. Pete).
NHR IN LAS VEGAS: Newman/Haas Racing has earned THREE wins (Bourdais 2004-2005, Mario Andretti 1983), ONE pole (Bourdais 2005) and SIX podium finishes (2nd – Servia 2005, Junqueira 2004, Ma. Andretti 1984) in five races in Las Vegas and finished 2nd in one of the two races they didn't win. The team most recently competed on a temporary street course in downtown Las Vegas in 2007, at Las Vegas Motor Speedway in 2004 & 2005 and on a temporary road course around Caesars Palace in 1983-1984.
Tune In... The race will be broadcast live on ABC on Sunday, October 16 at 3:00 p.m. ET. The radio broadcast also will be carried on www.indycar.com As always, fans can follow the action from every on-track session via the official website of the IZOD IndyCar Series, www.indycar.com