Power wins provisional pole at Zolder
Zolder, Belgium (Sports Network) - Will Power captured the provisional pole for Sunday's Champ Car Grand Prix of Belgium at the Zolder Circuit. The No.5 Team Australia driver circled the 2.622-mile road course in one minute, 13.810 seconds (121.545 m.p.h.) to take the top spot.
The time was quicker than the pole-winning time set in 1984 by Michele Alboreto of Ferrari (1:14.846) when Formula One last raced on the track.
The pole victory guarantees Power a starting spot on the front row and one championship point.
Behind Power were three-time series champion and current points leader Sebastien Bourdais (1:14.023), Simon Pagenaud (1:14.030), Graham Rahal (1:14.224) and Bruno Junqueira (1:14.433).
"Obviously it would be awesome to go back to Europe with the McDonald's team and get another couple of wins, but those tracks are a big unknown for us," said Bourdais. "I have never been to Zolder or Assen."
That hasn't seemed to bother the Frenchman in the past. Over the last four years, seven new venues have been used by the Champ Car circuit and Bourdais won five times.
"For Champ Car, it's their first time at Zolder, but not for me -- I raced there seven years ago, in 2000," said Robert Doornbos. "It's just great to drive in front of your home crowd, and for sure it gives you an extra boost that you need."
Three drivers didn't get a chance to qualify for various reasons. Doornbos had an engine failure just before qualifying began, Jan Heylen was involved in a practice crash and Champ Car suspended Dan Clarke for the weekend for his role in the incident that damaged Heylen's car.
The final qualifying session is scheduled for Saturday morning and the race is set to drop the green flag on Sunday.
08/24 13:17:39 ET