Christian Lundgaard wins first career pole at IMS Road Course

By: Spencer Neff
May 12,2023

Qualifying Results

Less than two years after starting fourth his NTT INDYCAR SERIES debut at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Road Course, Christian Lundgaard earned his first career pole on Friday afternoon on the same track.

He will start tomorrow’s 85-lap GMR Grand Prix on the 2.438-mile, 14-turn permanent road course in Speedway, Indiana from the front of the 27-car grid. Clocking a best lap of 1m09.3321 (126.643 mph), the Rahal letterman Lanigan driver edged out Arrow McLaren’s Felix Rosnqvist by .0027 of a second.

Per INDYCAR, it is the narrowest margin between front row starters since this qualifying format has been implemented and the fourth-closest Fast Six in that span.

Lundgaard’s previous career best start was third (Nashville 2022; started third after qualifying fourth in Portland).

In his last race on the IMS Road Course, the Hedenstead, Denmark native became the first Danish driver to score a Top Five after finishing second in July.

This is Rahal Letterman Lanigan’s 34th pole as an organization. Their last pole was at World Wide Technology Raceway (Gateway)-Race 2 with Takuma Sato in 2020.

Round 3-Fast Six


Round 3 Results

A brief slide during his final qualifying lap saw Rosenqvist narrowly miss out on his second pole of 2023 and third on the IMS Road Course. Alex Palou of Chip Ganassi Racing starts third with Lundgaard’s RLLR teammate Jack Harvey in fourth. Pato O’Ward, Rosenqvist’s teammate is joined on Row 3 by Andretti Autosport’s Kyle Kirkwood.

The winner at Long Beach, Kirkwood is the only previous winner from the season’s opening four rounds to make the Fast Six. Lundgaard will look to duplicate Kirkwood in earning his first career pole and race win on the same weekend.

Round 2-Fast 12


Round 2 Results

Palou, who lead the second practice in the afternoon, would pace the second round, as the fastest of the six drivers to advance to the second round (1m09.2082-126.889 mph), ahead of Lundgaard, O’Ward, Rosenqvist, Harvey and Kirkwood.

Points leader Marcus Ericsson missed the Fast Six by .0288 of a second and he will start seventh. In eighth through 12th are Graham Rahal (best start of 2023), Scott Dixon, Alexander Rossi, Marcus Armstrong and Will Power. Armstrong is the best qualifier among the four rookies for the third time in his four appearances. He also earned his best career start in the process.

Round 1-Group 1

Group 1 Results

Lundgaard would lead the first of two groups in the opening round of qualifying, posting a best lap of 1m09.4639 (126.402 mph), advancing with Rahal, Rosenqvist, Armstrong, Power and Ericsson.

Josef Newgarden of Team Penske missed the Fast 12 by .0059 of a Second. He, along with Devlin DeFrancesco, Rinus VeeKay, Simon Pagenaud, Conor Daly, Benjamin Pedersen and Agustin Canapino will start on the inside of Rows 7-13 (13,15,17,19,21,23,25).

Round 1-Group 2

Image By James Black/INDYCAR

Group 2 Results

After leading opening practice, O’Ward set another blistering lap (1m09.2937-126.713 mph) to lead the seven-car group finishing the opening round. He advanced to the second round along with Rossi,Palou, Harvey,Kirkwood and Dixon.

2022 Race Winner Colton Herta missed out on the Fast 12 by .1667 of a second and starts 14th, the same starting spot he won from last year. Scott McLaughlin, Romain Grosjean, David Malukas, Sting Ray Robb, Callum Ilott, Helio Castroneves and Santino Ferrucci were unable to advance as well. The will start 16th, 18th, 20th, 22nd, 24th, 26th and 27th.

Up Next

Here is the on-track schedule for tomorrow at the GMR Grand Prix. IndyCar1909 is on-site at IMS and will have updates throughout the month of May. Stay with us and our social media channels.

At-track schedule (all times local):


11:15-11:45 a.m. NTT INDYCAR SERIES warmup, Peacock

3:30 p.m. NBC on air

3:39 p.m. “Drivers, start your engines”

3:45 p.m. GMR Grand Prix (85 laps/207.3 miles), NBC (Live)

Header Image By INDYCAR


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