Franchitti Fastest At Infineon

Sonoma, CA ? Dario Franchitti displayed his road-racing prowess at Infineon Raceway by zipping to the pole position for Sunday?s Motorola 300 presented by Jackson Rancheria Casino & Hotel. The race will be the 15th of 17 2007 IndyCar Series events.

The Scot?s pole speed was 107.951 miles per hour, which gave him fast-qualifying honors for the second time in 2007 and the fifth time in his career. He also earned his third consecutive front-row starting position.

?It feels good,? Franchitti said after topping the single-car qualifying session and the subsequent Firestone Fast Six session. ?The track conditions changed a lot from this morning, and the wind was stronger,? he said. ?It was a case of adapting to the course, and it worked out well for us.?

As usual, Franchitti drove the Canadian Club Dallara Honda fielded by Andretti Green Racing. The stellar team also displayed its strength by sweeping the top three qualifying positions.

Danica Patrick recovered from a dismal 12th fastest practice time to qualify second with a speed of 107.325 mph. She was the only driver to improve upon her position in the Fast Six session, advancing from sixth to runner-up.

?It wasn?t a pretty lap,? said the popular driver, who earned her second front-row start of the season and matched her career-best qualifying effort on a road/street circuit. ?Like I said at Mid-Ohio, these ten-minute sessions really suit me. We were close to not making it in, but once we did, I took advantage of having the time.?

Tony Kanaan zipped into third place with a speed of 107.263 mph. ?My Team 7-Eleven car is definitely good enough to win the race tomorrow, but it is going to be tough to get to the front.?

Helio Castroneves will join Kanaan in the second row. ?When we came out to qualify (the 18th and final car), the wind had picked up,? he said. ?We knew it would affect our times, and it seemed to affect us the most.?

Championship challengers Scott Dixon and Sam Hornish Jr. qualified for the third row starting positions with Ryan Hunter-Reay and 2006 race winner Marco Andretti immediately behind them.

Buddy Rice and Dan Wheldon rounded out the top ten qualifiers.

The remainder of the starting field will be comprised of Tomas Scheckter, Kosuke Matsuura, Vitor Meira, Ed Carpenter, A. J. Foyt IV, Darren Manning, Scott Sharp and Sarah Fisher, who did not make a qualifying run.

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