Posted April 28, 2012 on
AP on Fox
Two-time race winner Will Power edged defending IndyCar Series champion Dario Franchitti to win the pole position for Sunday's Sao Paulo 300.
Power had a lap of 1 minute, 21.4045 seconds on the 2.5-mile, 11-turn Anhembi circuit on the streets of South America's biggest city, less than half a tenth of a second ahead of Franchitti, whose Chip Ganassi Racing teammate Scott Dixon will start third.
James Hinchcliffe, Ryan-Hunter Reay and Justin Wilson rounded the fastest six in qualifying on Saturday.
Power is trying to win his third straight race in Sao Paulo. The Australian also won the last two races heading into Brazil and is the series points leader.
"It was a good run," Power said. "We are giving ourselves the best opportunity for the first corner."
The Australian also won the last two races heading into Brazil and is the series points leader. He will try to give Penske its fourth straight race to start the season for the first time in team history in IndyCar.
Franchitti had been fastest in Saturday's practice but made a mistake in qualifying that he said was costly.
"The car is very good," he said. "I'm a little disappointed with myself, on that last lap I made a mistake."
Qualifying was run under overcast skies but dry conditions. Rain affected the first two races won by Power in Brazil. The inaugural event was postponed for a day and last year the race was cut short.
Some of the main changes to the track this year aimed to improve the drainage system at the street circuit. Officials also reduced a strong bump near the braking point for the first chicane, which drivers had complained about last year.
"It is much better now, they were able to fix that," said Helio Castroneves, who qualified only 20th for his home race.
It was the first time the cars were able to race after Honda was allowed to make changes to the turbochargers on its engines, giving the six teams using them an extra boost of power. Honda was permitted to make the change after a three-person panel on Thursday upheld an IndyCar decision against an appeal by Chevrolet.
Power has a Chevrolet in his Penske, but six drivers using Honda engines will start in the top 10 on Sunday.
"That helped as well," Franchitti said about the engine change.
Lotus also is supplying engines to teams this season. IndyCar has multiple engine manufacturers for the first time in seven years.
The best Brazilian driver was Tony Kanaan, who will start 12th. Kanaan's KV Racing teammate Rubens Barrichello, in his first race at home since joining IndyCar this season after a 19-year career in Formula One, will be just behind in 13th place.
BEST OF MAXIM
Will Power won IndyCar's Sao Paulo 300 for the third straight
time on Sunday.
Few things have gone wrong for Team Penske in this year's IndyCar Series, and there's a good chance it will all get even better at the Sao Paulo 300 on Sunday.
Penske drivers have won every pole position and every race so far this season, and the team's successful record on the streets of South America's biggest city puts it in position to keep its good fortune going...
Two-time race winner Will Power was fastest in the first practice session for Sunday's Sao Paulo 300, edging Chip Ganassi teammates Dario Franchitti and Scott Dixon.
Power had a lap of 1 minute, 22.387 seconds in his Penske at the 2.5-mile, 11-turn Anhembi circuit on the streets of South America's biggest city. He was just .007 in front of three-time defending IndyCar series...
Chevy's Will Power leads opening practice on the streets of Sao Paulo under heavy but dry skies, pipping Honda's Dario Franchitti by .0078.
2012 is the year of Will Power. Power extended his winning streak for the season to capture his third consecutive win this year and made it three-for-three at Brazil in winning all three times the series has gone to the Sao Paulo street circuit.
Power led 65 of the 75 laps around the 2.536-mile street course and cruised to his 18th career IZOD IndyCar Series win.
The win today...
The shocking part of the Sao Paulo Indy 300 was that it was run in the dry. The winner, however, is no shock at all -- Will Power.Power has now won his third consecutive IZOD IndyCar Series race and his third straight Sao Paulo title. His nine-tenths of a second victory over Ryan Hunter-Reay also made history for Team Penske, as it marked the first time in 44 seasons of competition...
[youtube]u4URALlmXjM[/youtube]Will Power will start his quest for a third straight Sao Paulo Indy 300 title from the pole position.Power, who's also looking to win his third consecutive IZOD IndyCar Series event after victories earlier this month in Alabama and at Long Beach, threw down a 81.4045 second lap in the Firestone Fast Six to win his second pole of 2012. The Australian...
The Sao Paulo Indy 300 event weekend got underway this morning in Brazil, with the first practice session led by Will Power. The IndyCar championship leader and winner of the last two events threw down a time of 82.3875 seconds on his final lap of the session to take the top spot. Behind him were the two Target Chip Ganassi Racing pilots, Dario Franchitti and Scott Dixon. Honda got...
[youtube]xOlyHc7xDF0[/youtube]It will be wet. And based on history, it will likely be wild. It's Sao Paulo. The fourth round of the 2012 IZOD IndyCar Series championship -- and the last one before the all-important 96th Indianapolis 500 -- goes off this weekend in Brazil. And outside of the omnipresent rains and the rapturous applause that all the Brazilian drivers will receive...