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DATE News (chronologically)
04/09/11
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Victor Garcia wins Indy Lights pole at Barber
Victor Garcia's quick out lap after a brief full-course caution late in qualifications caught the 21-year-old Spaniard -- and the rest of the Firestone Indy Lights field -- by surprise.

Garcia toured the 2.38-mile, 17-turn natural-terrain course in 1 minute, 17.279 seconds, jumping from fourth on the time sheet to first with 40 seconds remaining in the 40-minute all-car session. That's where he remained in the No. 22 TMR-Xtreme Coil Drilling car to claim his first Sunoco Pole Award.

Esteban Guerrieri, who rose to the top with 18 minutes left and looked to be the pole winner for the second consecutive race with a best lap of 1:17.3080, will start second in the No. 7 Lucas Oil/Sam Schmidt Motorsports car.

“It was a tight qualifying today, especially with that full-course yellow flag that forced everyone to pit," Guerrieri said. "Our pit box was in the back of pit lane so that wasn’t good for us because I only got one full lap in after I went back out after the yellow and the lap was in traffic. The rest of the field was able to get two full laps after the yellow and that is where Victor Garcia got me, but the car is good and we are going to fight back in the race.

"The car is very smooth and it is nice to drive so I feel confident heading into the race tomorrow. We are in a good position sitting on the front row."

Stefan Wilson also posted his quickest lap following the caution (1:17.3123) in the No. 5 Andretti Autosport car to move to third on the grid. He'll start next to Conor Daly (1:17.3463) in the No. 77 Mazda Road to Indy/Sam Schmidt Motorsports car.

The top 12 cars were separated by a second.

"I felt like we were really close to having it on the last lap, but unfortunately I made a tiny mistake," said Wilson, who scored his best start since qualifying on the front row at Watkins Glen in 2010. "With the field as competitive as it is, you can't afford to make little mistakes. I feel bad for the guys because I almost gave them their first pole of the season. We just have to look toward to tomorrow and see what we can do to make the car even quicker for the race."

Results

Pos Driver Team No. Time

1

Victor Garcia Team Moore Racing 22 01m17.2793s
2 Esteban Guerrieri Sam Schmidt Motorsports 7 01:17.3080
3 Stefan Wilson Andretti Autosport 5 01:17.3123
4 Conor Daly Sam Schmidt Motorsports 77 01:17.3463
5 Anders Krohn Belardi Auto Racing 9 01:17.5993
6 Gustavo Yacaman Team Moore Racing 2 01:17.6914
7 Josef Newgarden Sam Schmidt Motorsports 11 01:17.8179
8 Peter Dempsey O2 Racing Technology 36 01:18.0350
9 Victor Carbone Sam Schmidt Motorsports 3 01:18.0844
10 Mikael Grenier O2 Racing Technology 63 01:18.2304
11 David Ostella Jensen MotorSport 16 01:18.3393
12 James Winslow Andretti Autosport 26 01:18.3476
13 Jorge Goncalvez Belardi Auto Racing 4 01:18.6461
14 Juan Pablo Garcia Jensen MotorSport 12 01:18.6870
15 Duarte Ferreira Bryan Herta Autosport 28 01:19.0052

QUOTES:

VICTOR GARCIA (No. 22 TMR-Xtreme Coil Drilling, Sunoco Pole Award winner): "Team Moore Racing did a really great job today. We had three sets today like we did yesterday when it was raining so we used a good strategy. At the end we had three minutes to go and knew the car was quick. We were able to get our best speed on the last lap. I am really happy and want to thank my crew and team. When my crew chief told me that I only had three minutes left I knew that we only two laps and I had to put it all out there."

ESTEBAN GUERRIERI (No. 7 Lucas Oil/Sam Schmidt Motorsports, qualified second): "It was a tight qualifying today, especially with that full-course yellow flag that forced everyone to pit. Our pit box was in the back of pit lane so that wasn't good for us because I only got one full lap in after I went back out after the yellow and the lap was in traffic. The rest of the field was able to get two full laps after the yellow and that is where Victor Garcia got me, but the car is good and we are going to fight back in the race. The car is very smooth and it is nice to drive so I feel confident heading into the race tomorrow. We are in a good position sitting on the front row. The track still isn't as good as it was in the open test in March but it is getting better."

STEFAN WILSON (No. 5 Andretti Autosport, qualified third): "I'm really pleased to qualify third. I knew when I was on a quick lap; I was really pleased with how car felt. I felt like we were really close to having it on the last lap, but unfortunately I made a tiny mistake. With the field as competitive as it is, you can't afford to make little mistakes. I feel bad for the guys because I almost gave them their first pole of the season. We just have to look toward to tomorrow and see what we can do to make the car even quicker for the race. We'll try and move forward from there."

CONOR DALY (No. 77 Mazda Road to Indy/Sam Schmidt Motorsports, qualified fourth): "It was unfortunate that we were this far back in the pit lineup. That was kind of unfortunate. It was just a struggle for us to find a bit of clear track. My teammates all around me, it was just hard to judge when to go. Josef got the best of us because he got to go out before us. It was my fault a bit in trying to get the gap. I just got it a bit wrong. We'll see how the race goes. The car is good. The speed is there. We were first or second the whole session. It was just unfortunate there at the end."

ANDERS KROHN (No. 9 Liberty Engineering Racing Special, qualified fifth): "In our first practice, the car was not great. The second session the car was better still, and today, again better yet. But in now our second event, there is still so much that we can do to the car so that I can push even harder and to be two tenths (of a second) from the pole is great. We're happy about that. We're all competitors and yeah, we would rather be on the pole, but this is still very good for the team. Looking forward to the race."

JOSEF NEWGARDEN (No. 11 Robo-Pong/Sam Schmidt Motorsports, qualified seventh): "I'm just disappointed for the guys. We had high expectations for this track. This is one of my favorites, too. I love this track, and I was hoping to do a great job for them out there and I feel like I let them down a bit. That's OK. It's just qualifying. The big show's on Sunday. We'll regroup and try and put a good racecar together and try and attack for the highest position we can get in the race. Anything can happen. It's a long race. We'll see what we can make happen."

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