Detroit Pole To Dixon
August 30, 2008 | 1:41 P.M. EST
Dixon will share the front row with Helio Castroneves, whom he leads in the championship by 43 points with two races remaining.
Dixon recorded a best lap of 1 minute, 12.2861 seconds, 103.090 mph around the 14-turn, 2.07-mile circuit during the Firestone Fast Six qualifying session.
"We pride ourselves on spending most of our time on strategy as a team," Dixon said. "I think we still have that in our pocket, and our position on pit lane definitely helps during the race. Hopefully we can save some fuel and keep that going. There is going to be a lot of people trying different strategies to improve their positions. A lot of the guys and girls, eight to 10 starting spots back, are going to try some pretty crazy things. We'll keep our mind focused on the race and try to go for the win."
Dixon's lap was .4788 of a second better than Castroneves' best lap (1:12.7649, 102.412 mph).
"I knew this was going to be between Scott (Dixon) and me," Castroneves said. "It will be very close between both of us. On the second round, I decided to predict a little bit what the track might have with the thicker tires, and we made a very small change. But those changes were enough to unfortunately make the car a little bit difficult and loose. We changed and went back out there. That change definitely proved that was bad."
Castroneves won the pole for last year's race at Belle Isle and finished 14th. Dixon, who has won four races from the pole this season, started third at Belle Isle last year and finished eighth.
Oriol Servia and Justin Wilson qualified third and fourth, respectively, while Ryan Briscoe and Graham Rahal will share Row 3.
Roth Racing has withdrawn the No. 25 entry driven by Marty Roth for the Detroit Indy Grand Prix presented by Firestone. Roth made contact with the wall in the straightaway entering Turn 7 during morning practice session. Damage to the car is more than the team initially thought, and with the limited amount of track time for Roth this weekend, they have decided to focus on the season finale at Chicagoland Speedway.
Sunday's 90-lap race is scheduled to take the green flag at 3:30 p.m. (ET).