Ed Carpenter Racing will start tomorrow’s Desert Diamond West Valley Phoenix Grand Prix at Phoenix International Raceway from fifth and seventh place respectively.
After topping the time sheets with a 1-2 in the opening practice session, Ed Carpenter and Josef Newgarden went into qualifying hoping to secure a possible front row position however when qualifying came around Ed Carpenter in the No.20 Fuzzy’s Ultra Premium Vodka Chevrolet slotted into fifth place and speaking following the session he stated:
We wanted to be 1-2 all weekend! While we weren’t able to accomplish that, our main goal is to win the race. We still have a good opportunity in front of us for that. It’s a good thing when you’re a little frustrated about starting 5th! I know there’s more speed in the car, we just didn’t quite get the right downforce level for qualifying in these conditions. IndyCar is so tough, we’re fighting over hundredths and thousands. It doesn’t take much to get a jump on your competition so we’ll chalk this up and remember it for next time.
Josef Newgarden will start tomorrow’s race from seventh place on the grid and although he has never raced here before when the Verizon IndyCar Series tested here in February he set the third fastest time overall with Carpenter setting the fourth fastest time.
Speaking following qualifying Newgarden commented by saying:
We hung it out there like we needed to and got up relatively high up in the field. Not quite what we wanted, I thought both myself and Ed were going to be pole contenders for sure. We had great cars with the Fuzzy’s Vodka Chevrolets. We were just battling the conditions there. I don’t think we quite had what we needed, but even though we’re not on the pole we still have fast racecars!