Ryan Hunter-Reay set a blazing pace at the final qualifying event in Lexington, Ohio at the Honda Indy 200. The pole position obviously doesn't guarantee victory, but if Hunter-Reay can maintain the pace he set on Saturday, he'll be tough to beat on Sunday. Per Dave Lewandowski, Hunter-Reay recorded a lap of 1:05.3519. The track record for fastest lap is 1:05.347 by Dario Franchitti and Gil de Ferran.
Even with Hunter-Reay's electric qualifying run, knocking off defending champion and four-time winner Scott Dixon will be difficult. The elements for an exciting race are set.
Here's the information you need to watch:
We know Hunter-Reay won the pole with a near record-setting pace, but here's the rest of the starting lineup set to compete at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course.
Car number in parentheses.
The 2.4 mile track features 13 turns.
Last year, Scott Dixon won for the second time in a row. It was his fourth win in six years on the track.
While Dixon has made himself at home in Mid-Ohio, this year's qualifying times prove others may be getting more comfortable as well.
Take a look at this virtual lap of the course from IndyCar on YouTube.
After Saturday's pole-setting run, it is obvious Hunter-Reay is one to watch on Sunday. Likewise, Dixon's career success makes him a prime candidate to win again in Lexington.
Hunter-Reay got the attention for earning the pole position, but Dixon's third-place spot on the grid is noteworthy.
That said, they aren't the only two drivers who have a strong chance to win.
Sandwiched between Hunter-Reay and Dixon in the starting lineup is the perennial runner-up Will Power. The 32-year-old has finished second in each of the last three IndyCar seasons.
He's having an off year by his standards. He currently sits 10th in the standings. But a strong performance in the qualifying run has him looking like a contender.
Don't count him out.
The weather should be near perfect for the race. Per Weather.com, the high is 72, the skies should be mostly sunny and there's only a 20 percent chance of rain.
If the great conditions hold up, we should see an exciting and hotly contested race.
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