Iowa Speedway is a place that has been dominated by Andretti Autosport. Michael Andretti’s team has won the last four races at Iowa, and five of the last seven. Today though, it belonged to Chip Ganassi’s team. Scott Dixon won the Pole for tomorrow night’s race, and his teammate Tony Kanaan will join him on the front row. All four Ganassi cars qualified in the top seven.
Dixon set a new track record with his two-lap qualifying run of 186.256 mph. In the seven IndyCar races at Iowa Speedway, no driver has ever won the race from pole position.
James Hinchcliffe was the fastest driver in practice 1. The session lasted less than 20 minutes due to severe weather, but James’ best lap was 17.5249 seconds. The raindrops played a big part in Friday’s activities, which changed the schedule, allowing for later qualifying. The second practice was paced by Juan Monotoya, but he had a slip in qualifying and will start 19th tomorrow night. His Penske teammates fared much better, with Helio Castroneves starting in third, and Will Power rolling off in ninth position.
Racing under the lights is slightly different for the drivers, but the real challenge is on the engineers. They’ll see plenty of obstacles thrown their way as they try to set up the car. One of those curveballs might be Mother Nature. The forecast for tomorrow night shows a strong chance of scattered thunderstorms around the area of the speedway.
The race broadcast begins tomorrow at 8 PM ET on NBC SN, for the 12th race of the 2014 season. Hinchcliffe is the defending race winner. Power and Castroneves enter the race tied for the championship lead.