Schmidt Peterson Motorsports managed to get two of their cars into the top ten in qualifying for the Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio with Robert Wickens in the No.6 Lucas Oil Honda starting the race from fifth place after setting a fastest time of 01:05.1747s.
Speaking following the session, Wickens said:
Q2 was a bit weird. With the red flag for Hinch (James Hinchcliffe), I was actually on my first timed lap on reds (Firestone alternate tires) and I didn’t actually get to do a full lap with the reds… I got through to Q3 effectively with my black (Firestone primary tire) lap. So, it was only myself and (Alexander) Rossi that were on the same kind of tire strategy going into the Firestone Fast Six, so I thought the Lucas Oil car was kind of a shoo-in for the front row; both of us only had half of a lap on our tires. We just struggled to get temperature out of our Firestone reds there and we had to settle for fifth. My lap felt fantastic, the balance was good, we just couldn’t get the grip out of it. I’m feeling a little disappointed with fifth.”
James Hinchcliffe in the No.5 Arrow Electronics Honda will start the race from tenth place having brought out the red flag at the end of the Firestone Fast 12. Speaking after setting a time of 01:06.5549s the Mayor of HinchTown commented by saying:
I got a bit greedy, there’s no two ways about it. I feel really bad for everybody on the Arrow Electronics car. Obviously, the car got really, really good in qualifying. We’ve been sort of there, thereabouts in practice – we kind of struggled with different issues. With those Firestone reds (alternate tires) on, we were second in the first group and I had just put the fastest time up; obviously, most guys hadn’t done that yet…it’s tough. This place is a qualifying track position race and I think for sure we had a good shot for the Firestone Fast Six. Who knows what could have been. It is what it is. We still have Robbie (Wickens) in there (the Firestone Fast Six). We’ll do what we can tomorrow, try and play tire strategy a little bit and see if we can move up.
Jack Harvey in the No.60 AutoNation/Sirius XM MSR with SPM Honda starts the race from 20th place having set a lap time of 01:05.9911s and speaking following the session he said:
“I think after Practice 2 yesterday, we were in a pretty good spot. Our red (Firestone alternate) tires yesterday were very good and we all were happy with the speed we had. We just haven’t been able to keep that momentum going today. We struggled more in practice then I would have liked and we didn’t have the same balance on the reds. We have some work to do on the No. 60 car. Everyone was struggling with the track, but that makes it important for us to stay on the ball. I don’t know why we struggled today, but we will have to evolve our strategy for tomorrow. We will need the cards to fall our way, but I know these guys are great at strategy and I know they will give me a good car for the race tomorrow.”