ELKHART LAKE, Wis. (Saturday, June 11, 2022) – There’s a new Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires pole sitter in town, and it’s Sting Ray Robb who will lead the field to green Sunday in the Indy Lights Grand Prix at Road America.
Robb drove to his first career Indy Lights pole position Saturday at picturesque Road America with a blistering lap time of 1 minute, 53.9743 in the No. 2 Sekady car for Andretti Autosport. Robb’s best lap cleared the competition by more than two-tenths of a second.
SEE: Qualifying Results
His rookie teammate Hunter McElrea also will start on the front row after laying down a best lap of 1:54.1981 in the No. 27 Andretti Autosport machine.
“Pole position, that’s pretty exciting,” Robb said. “We know Road America is a tough place to win from pole. A huge shoutout to the team for this one.”
Andretti Autosport swept more than just the front row as the team’s other two drivers monopolized row two to give the organization the top four starting spots after drivers from HMD Motorsports with Dale Coyne Racing led both practice sessions before qualifying this weekend.
Last year’s Indy Pro 2000 season champion Christian Rasmussen qualified third at 1:54.2714 in the No. 28 Road to Indy/Stellrecht car, and Matthew Brabham will start fourth at 1:54.3889 in the No. 83 Andretti Autosport machine.
Robb’s run to pole position ended championship leader Linus Lundqvist’s streak of five consecutive Indy Lights pole positions dating back to the second race of the season at Barber Motorsports Park.
Lundqvist held pole for most of the session in the No. 26 HMD Motorsports with Dale Coyne Racing car. As business picked up near the end of the 25-minute session and a majority of the field hit the 14-turn, 4.048-mile road course, Lundqvist’s top time fell.
Lundqvist attempted to take pole position back in the closing minutes, but an uncharacteristic off-track moment left him settling for sixth with a best lap of 1:54.6060. It’s his worst Indy Lights start this season. In the one other race that Lundqvist didn’t score the pole position, at St. Petersburg, he started second.
Following Lundqvist is his teammate and closest championship competitor Benjamin Pedersen, who will start seventh in the No. 24 Global Racing Group with HMD car at 1:54.7035. Pedersen is second in the championship, 84 points behind Lundqvist.
With the top two in the championship starting in the middle of the pack, Sunday’s race poses a great opportunity for rivals to close the championship gap to Lundqvist and Pedersen as the series reaches the halfway mark.
Robb is fourth in the standings, 92 points back, with Danial Frost, third in the standings, qualified fifth at 1:54.4251 in the No. 68 HMD Motorsports with Dale Coyne Racing car.
While it’s Robb’s first career pole, it’s his second consecutive race starting on the front row. He started second in last week’s Indy Lights Detroit Grand Prix, which was his previous best start.
He’s also eyeing his first career Indy Lights win. His best finish is third, which he’s done four times so far this season.
“It’s just been constant improvement each week for us,” Robb said. “I’m confident in the car I got, I’m confident in the team, so we’re going to do our job and hope it all pays off.”
The Indy Lights Grand Prix at Road America will take the green flag at 10:35 a.m. (ET) Sunday, live on Peacock Premium and the INDYCAR Radio Network.
About Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires
Celebrating 35 years, Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires develops drivers and teams to compete in the NTT INDYCAR SERIES and the Indianapolis 500 presented by Gainbridge. Past champions include INDYCAR SERIES champions Tony Kanaan, Scott Dixon, Josef Newgarden, Paul Tracy and Cristiano da Matta. In 2021, 20 drivers in the NTT INDYCAR SERIES were Indy Lights graduates, including rising stars and race winners Colton Herta, Pato O’Ward and Rinus VeeKay. The 2022 season consists of 14 races in the United States. The NTT INDYCAR SERIES, Indy Lights, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and IMS Productions are owned by Penske Corporation, a global transportation, automotive and motorsports leader. For more information on Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires, please visit www.indylights.com. For more information on INDYCAR and the NTT INDYCAR SERIES, please visit www.indycar.com.
About Cooper Tire
Cooper Tire, a subsidiary of The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Company (NASDAQ: GT), specializes in the design, manufacture, marketing and sale of passenger car, light truck, medium truck, motorcycle and racing tires. Cooper is headquartered in Findlay, Ohio, with manufacturing, sales, distribution, technical and design operations located in more than one dozen countries around the world. For more information on Cooper, visit www.coopertire.com, www.facebook.com/coopertire or www.twitter.com/coopertire.
Goodyear is one of the world’s largest tire companies. It employs about 72,000 people and manufactures its products in 55 facilities in 23 countries around the world. Its two Innovation Centers in Akron, Ohio, and Colmar-Berg, Luxembourg, strive to develop state-of-the-art products and services that set the technology and performance standard for the industry. For more information about Goodyear and its products, go to www.goodyear.com/corporate.
Categories: Road to Indy, Starting Line-Up
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