Matos wins pole for Indy Lights race

Champ Car Atlantic champion and Miami-resident Raphael Matos claimed the SWE Pole Award for Saturday’s Firestone Indy Lights Miami 100, showing just how good this road-racer is even on oval tracks.

Rafael Matos
Gail Miller/AutoRacing1.com

RAPHAEL MATOS (No. 27 Automatic Fire Sprinklers, Inc.): “It feels great to win the pole. The team worked so hard during the winter and through the preseason. This just proves to everybody that we can get the job done. It feels great to start up front. It's really important at this track. I hope we can keep it clean and finish the race well to collect points." (Did you have doubts that you could win the pole on a oval): "You always think that this is so different from what I'm used to doing, but I have such a great team supporting me. It's good that I had the confidence in my car and I can trust my car. And at the end of the day, I'm trying my best. But when you have good people in the team, you get good results. I'm very happy that I was able to deliver the results for the team. They deserve it."

DILLON BATTISTINI (No. 15 Panther Racing): “I joined this team last week. It’s my second day on ovals and in the Firestone Indy Lights car. The last time I drove this car was my rookie test. So to put that performance in, the team has done an awesome job."

SEAN GUTHRIE (No. 4 Car Crafters Guthrie Racing): “The whole car all weekend has been a great experience to drive, no bad habits at all. So the car is very good. We’re really happy. Since the start of the season, Guthrie Racing said that we wanted to finish top three at all the ovals. That’s our goal. If we can start there now, we have a great opportunity."

Qualifying Friday for the Miami 100 Firestone Indy Lights event on the 1.5-mile Homestead-Miami Speedway, with starting position, car number in parentheses, driver and average speed:

1. (27) Raphael Matos, Dallara, 186.899
2. (15) Dillon Battistini, Dallara, 186.541
3. (4) Sean Guthrie, Dallara, 186.089
4. (5) Andrew Prendeville, Dallara, 186.054
5. (7) Richard Antinucci, Dallara, 185.993
6. (20) Ana Beatriz, Dallara, 185.802
7. (11) James Davison, Dallara, 185.786
8. (17) Bobby Wilson, Dallara, 185.776
9. (33) Wade Cunningham, Dallara, 185.480
10. (43) Pablo Donoso, Dallara, 185.312
11. (26) Arie Luyendyk Jr., Dallara, 185.158
12. (18) Cyndie Allemann, Dallara, 185.043
13. (16) Brent Sherman Ken Losch, Dallara, 184.786
14. (23) Logan Gomez, Dallara, 184.769
15. (24) Chris Festa, Dallara, 184.254
16. (54) Mickey Gilbert Potekhen, Dallara, 184.114
17. (8) Nathan Freke, Dallara, 184.015
18. (21) Al Unser III, Dallara, 183.581
19. (6) Jake Slotten, Dallara, 183.480
20. (34) Jon Brownson, Dallara, 182.923
21. (3) Juan Manuel Polar, Dallara, 181.117
22. (9) Tom Wieringa, Dallara, No Speed
23. (25) J.R Hildebrand, Dallara, No Speed

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