Dario Franchitti on Pole at Sonoma

DarioDario Franchitti earned pole position for Sunday’s IndyCar race in Sonoma, California. This is the 33rd career pole for Dario, and his 3rd at this track. It was an emotional day for owner Chip Ganassi, who lost his father Floyd last week. Franchitti has not won a race since the 2012 Indianapolis 500. Still, Ganassi’s team has won the past four IndyCar races, with Scott Dixon and Charlie Kimball.

Dario will share the front row with Dixon, as the Target cars swept the front row. Row two belongs to Will Power and Ryan Hunter-Reay, with Helio Castroneves and Charlie Kimball in row three. Justin Wilson, Graham Rahal, James Hinchcliffe, and Simon Pagenaud round of the top ten starters for tomorrow’s race.

Power’s winless streak will reach 484 days tomorrow. Perhaps this could be the best opportunity for him to snap it. The last three years here, Power has won the pole for every race, and finished 1st, 1st, and 2nd last year behind then-teammate Ryan Briscoe. After a decent outing at Mid-Ohio, and a solid qualifying spot, this could be the week the streak ends.

There will be both new and familiar faces here this weekend. Defending race winner Ryan Briscoe returns, driving the National Guard car for Panther. JR Hildebrand is back, driving the Barracuda Racing car for Bryan Herta. James Davison is back in the second Coyne car, and Lucas Luhr makes his IndyCar debut in a partnership with Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing.

Castroneves has a 31 point lead over Dixon in the championship standings, with just 5 races remaining. Andretti Autosport teammates Ryan Hunter-Reay and Marco Andretti are third and fourth. The GoPro Grand Prix of Sonoma airs at 4 PM ET on NBC Sports Network.

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