Pippa Mann wins 2nd Lights pole
On tracks where it's 100% car, Pippa Mann's positive run on ovals continued in Sunoco Pole Qualifying for the Buckle Up. Drive Smart Kentucky 100 at Kentucky Speedway as the Sam Schmidt Motorsports driver earned her second pole start of the season.
Mann recorded a two-lap average of 190.474 mph (55.9447 seconds) to vault Martin Plowman (190.309 mph) and become the third female to start on the pole at Kentucky Speedway (Sarah Fisher in 2002 and Danica Patrick in 2005 in the IZOD IndyCar Series).
Mann finished a career-best second Aug. 28 in the Chicagoland 100 on that 1.5-mile oval. She also started from the pole this season at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in the Firestone Freedom 100.
Firestone Indy Lights championship points leader J.K. Vernay (189.914) of Sam Schmidt Motorsports will be joined on the second row by Walker Racing's Dan Clarke (190.128). James Hinchcliffe of Team Moore Racing, the closest pursuer of Vernay for the title, will start fifth (189.914).
1. (11) Pippa Mann, 190.474
2. (27) Martin Plowman, 190.309
3. (26) Charlie Kimball, 190.257
4. (7) JK Vernay, 190.252
5. (40) Dan Clarke, 190.128
6. (2) James Hinchcliffe, 189.914
7. (22) Adrian Campos Jr, 189.290
8. (32) Brandon Wagner, 189.128
9. (24) Arie Luyendyk Jr, 189.047
10. (28) Stefan Wilson, 188.913
11. (18) Rodrigo Barbosa, 187.147
12. (29) Sebastian Saavedra, no speed
13. (49) Philip Major, no speed
14. (10) Gustavo Yacaman, no speed
PIPPA MANN (No. 11 Sam Schmidt Motorsports, Sunoco Pole Award winner): "Last week was a really good week for us, we had a nice run in the race. We came here hoping for something similar. I'm really, really pleased to get the pole. We didn't seem to think that we were that quick but we've been on the front row for three out of the four oval races this year and every time we thought we were a top-five car so maybe there's something to it. Today, I really have to thank my teammates. They let me know what their cars were doing and I was able to use my in-car tools so huge thank you goes out to not only my guys by J.K. Vernay and Philip Major for letting me know what was going on out there."
MARTIN PLOWMAN (No. 27 Automatic Fire Sprinklers/KEP Printing, qualified second): "We just missed out on the pole, but it was still a great effort for the #27 crew. We have been on the front row for three out of the last four races. We have had two poles and a second so we seem to be hitting our stride. Starting on the pole doesn't mean a lot for the race because things can happen so quickly. We are starting on the front row here so hopefully we can have a good, clean race tomorrow."