FORT WORTH, Texas – Starting near the back of the field because of entrant points, Tony Kanaan is one driver that wishes Saturday’s qualifications at Texas Motor Speedway had not been canceled.
Kanaan, making his return to the NTT IndyCar Series for the first time since the second race of a doubleheader at World Wide Technology Raceway in Madison, Ill., on Aug. 30, was the fastest in Saturday’s rain-delayed practice.
Kanaan’s fast lap in the No. 48 Bryant Honda was 230.173 mph around the IndyCar-measured 1.44-mile Texas Motor Speedway.
Arrow McLaren SP’s Pato O’Ward was second in the No. 5 Chevrolet at 219.934 mph. Two-time Indianapolis 500 winner Takuma Sato was third in the No. 30 Honda for Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing at 219.868 mph.
Chip Ganassi Racing’s six-time NTT IndyCar Series champion Scott Dixon was fourth at 219.723 mph in the No. 9 PNC Bank Honda with Team Penske’s Simon Pagenaud rounding out the top-five at 219.708 mph in the No. 22 Chevrolet.
Because of persistent moisture that kept the racing surface from drying, Saturday’s practice was delayed for nearly two hours. That delay led IndyCar Series officials to scrap Saturday’s qualifications and adjust the schedule.
The start of the race has been moved up to 7:10 p.m. ET from its scheduled 7:45 p.m. ET start. The starting lineup will be determined by entrant points, which means Alex Palou of Chip Ganassi Racing will start on the pole. The starting lineup for Sunday’s XPEL 375 will be based on entrant points following Saturday night’s race.
Team Penske’s Will Power will start second Saturday night. Dixon starts third followed by Colton Herta, with Pagenaud rounding out the top five.
Kanaan will start 23rd based off the entrant points earned by Jimmie Johnson in the first two races this season.