Webb earns Indy Lights pole DETROIT - Oliver Webb would be hard-pressed to name the first driver to earn a Firestone Indy Lights pole start for Sam Schmidt Motorsports. That would be Brandon Erwin in 2003.
Webb has the distinction of being the 50th Sam Schmidt Motorsports pole winner. He'll lead the field to the green flag later today in the 45-lap race on the Belle Isle street circuit, attempting to give the team its 50th race win. Thiago Medeiros was the first winner in 2004.
Webb had a quick lap of 1 minute, 17.7720 seconds on the 2.07-mile, 14-turn course that was shortened by 10 minutes because of repairs to a barrier in Turn 14. Webb, 21, of Manchester, England, had a previous best start of third at St. Petersburg and Long Beach.
"It means a lot to me and hopefully it will mean a lot to Sam as well," said Webb, whose best finish this season is sixth at Long Beach. "Hopefully this will translate in a short time to a win. We kind of said the season starts today. We’ve had average finishes. We should have been on the podium in St. Pete and at Long Beach we definitely should have been on podium after we had a strong qualifying, so this definitely is the start of the season for us."
Teammate Tristan Vautier, driving the No. 77 Mazda Road to Indy/SSM with Curb-Agajanian car, also will start on the front row (1:18.1299).
Series points leader Esteban Guerrieri, winner of the Firestone Freedom 100 on May 25, will join Alon Day of Belardi Auto Racing on Row 2. It's Day's best start this season. Victor Carbone and Peter Dempsey will start on the third row.
The race will be broadcast at 1:30 p.m. (ET) on www.indycar.com with the IMS Radio Network, and will be televised on the NBC Sports Network at 5 p.m. (ET) June 7.
1. (7) Oliver Webb, 01:17.7720 (95.819) 2. (77) Tristan Vautier, 01:18.1299 (95.380) 3. (11) Esteban Guerrieri, 01:18.2360 (95.250) 4. (3) Victor Carbone, 01:18.4237 (95.022) 5. (15) Peter Dempsey, 01:18.4500 (94.990) 6. (2) Gustavo Yacaman, 01:18.8023 (94.566) 7. (26) Carlos Munoz, 01:19.0546 (94.264) 8. (22) David Ostella, 01:19.2297 (94.056) 9. (27) Sebastian Saavedra, 01:20.4357 (92.645) 10. (24) Armaan Ebrahim, 01:21.0193 (91.978) 11. (76) Juan Pablo Garcia, 01:21.1422 (91.839) 12. (9) Alon Day, no time, no speed 13. (16) Rodin Younessi, 01:30.4265 (82.409) Note: Day's laps were disallowed after his car failed post-qualifying inspection. Younessi will start 13th after car failed to qualify within 105 percent of pole time.
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