LEXINGTON, OH – Entering today’s Honda 200 qualifying session, it appeared Chip Ganassi Racing, most notably Scott Dixon and Tony Kanaan would be the drivers to beat for not just the pole position, but the race win as well. Dixon, was quickest in two of the three practice sessions this weekend including this morning, while Kanaan was one of only two drivers to be in the top five in all three sessions himself.
But, when the speed counted the most, neither driver made it to the Firestone Fast Six.
Ganassi drivers have won a record setting 10 Honda 200’s at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course including seven of the last nine years. That stat alone makes Dixon and Kanaan among the favorites, and if strategy goes their way tomorrow, they still can be, but they have a tough road to climb on the hilly 2.258-mile road course.
Kanaan, didn’t even make it out of the first round of qualifying, as the Brazilian will start 14th on Sunday. His other teammate Max Chilton didn’t either, as he will start alongside of him in 13th.
Dixon, advanced past the opening round, but he wasn’t very competitive in the second round as he qualified 11th in his No. 9 Target Chevrolet.
Three of the four Ganassi cars will start outside the top 10.
This morning, all four drivers were inside the top eight as they’ve been there most of the weekend. So, for them to qualify this bad is head turning.
They have a lot of work to do over night and in the warmup tomorrow as they need to rely on help from strategy instead of pure speed.