Franchitti secures pole in Sonoma
25 August 2013 – Dario Franchitti took pole during Saturday's IndyCar qualifying session at the Infineon Raceway, the Ganassi driver turning in a lap of 1:17.527 to move two tenths clear of team-mate Scott Dixon. Will Power finished third, the fastest of the Chevrolet runners.
The early phase of qualifying provided no major surprises; Tony Kanaan was the first of the bigger names to be eliminated in Group 2. Debutant Lucas Luhr, a five-time winner of the American Le Mans Series, failed to find enough speed to progress, the German finishing last in his session and seven tenths behind Ed Carpenter.
The second phase belonged to the Penske and Ganassi cars, with reigning Champion Ryan Hunter-Reay the only man keeping them honest. British driver Justin Wilson ended the day in seventh, ahead of Graham Rahal and Simon Pagenaud. James Hinchcliffe was unable to match a strong performance from the first session and finished 10th, with Marco Andretti and Sebastien Bourdais sharing the sixth row.
The Firestone 'Fast Six' saw an empty track for much of the session, the silence broken by Franchitti’s first venture on to the circuit with three minutes to go. The Scot’s decision to go out ahead of the others paid dividends, with a clear circuit yielding the best time. Dixon had to settle for second, with Power, Hunter-Reay and Hélio Castroneves completing the top five. Charlie Kimball will start the race from sixth.
Sunday's race at the Infineon Raceway starts at 1.40pm local time (GMT -7)