Rahal Does It Again, Puts Honda on Pole in Portland

  • Graham Rahal claims pole for Sunday's Bitnile.com Grand Prix of Portland
  • Rahal's second consecutive road course pole of 2023
  • Chip Ganassi Honda drivers Scott Dixon and Alex Palou continue their battle for the NTT INDYCAR SERIES championship, will start fourth and fifth

Graham Rahal once again led the way for Honda Saturday at Portland International Raceway, qualifying on the pole for tomorrow's Bitnile.com Grand Prix of Portland. 

It is Rahal's second pole of the 2023 NTT INDYCAR SERIES season and his second consecutive road course pole.  The Honda racer also led qualifying last month at the Gallagher Grand Prix on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course.

Honda drivers claimed four of the top six qualifying positions at PIR, with Colton Herta starting third for Andretti Autosport; while Scott Dixon and Alex Palou – the two remaining contenders for the 2023 Drivers' Championship – qualifed fourth and fifth, respectively.

Bitnile.com Grand Prix of Portland Honda Qualifying Results

  •   1st Graham Rahal                    Rahal Letterman Lanigan Honda
  •   3rd Colton Herta                       Andretti Autosport Honda
  •   4th Scott Dixon                         Chip Ganassi Racing Honda
  •   5th Alex Palou                          Chip Ganassi Racing Honda
  • 10th Marcus Ericsson                 Chip Ganassi Racing Honda
  • 14th Marcus Armstrong-R           Chip Ganassi Racing Honda
  • 15th Romain Grosjean                Andretti Autosport Honda
  • 16th Kyle Kirkwood                    Andretti Autosport Honda
  • 17th Christian Lundgaard            Rahal Letterman Lanigan Honda   
  • 18th Juri Vips-R                         Rahal Letterman Lanigan Honda    
  • 21st Devlin DeFrancesco            Andretti Autosport Honda
  • 22nd Helio Castroneves              Meyer Shank Racing Honda
  • 24th David Malukas                    Dale Coyne Racing with HMD Honda
  • 25th Sting Ray Robb-R               Dale Coyne Racing with RWR Honda
  • 27th Tom Blomqvist-R                Meyer Shank Racing Honda

R – Rookie

Graham Rahal (#15 Rahal Letterman Lanigan Honda) pole qualifier, fifth career pole and second pole of 2023: "What can I say? I mean, once again Honda has just done an amazing job for us, they've continued to push so hard. For us on the #15 car, to get our second NTT P1 award of the year is a great accomplishment. Obviously tomorrow, we know that fuel mileage is going to be good. We need to keep our tires underneath us and then see what this race has in store for us. We led a lot of this thing two years ago, and it would be good to get on the top step of the podium at Portland. Great job to everybody to HPD, to Honda, everything they've done to continue to push forward and push our team forward has meant a lot. Let's go get a win!"

Scott Dixon (#9 Chip Ganassi Racing Honda) qualified fourth: "I think it's a good starting position. We were surprised how many teams were using a lot of tires. There's definitely a few cars that are compromised for the race. You need at least three sets of blacks, and a lot of teams only have two. We are going to go with blacks in Q3, but opted not to so we won't be compromised for tomorrow. The car's got good pace. I would say our peak pace is maybe not quite where we'd like it, but our second run and this morning's long-run pace was pretty good. Lots of good strong Hondas up there, it's good to see!"

Alex Palou (#10 Chip Ganassi Racing Honda) qualified fifth: "It's going to take a lot of work tomorrow! It's a super tight place, and we were pretty good in Q1 and also in practice, and we're still starting P5, but of course we wanted a little bit more and couldn't get it. Our car is really good. We'll see in the final practice how our long-run pace is, but we're expecting a good race for tomorrow!"

Fast Facts

  • Today's pole by Graham Rahal is the 11th of the season for Honda. Honda continues to lead the Manufacturers' Championship standings, with 10 victories in 15 races this season.
  • Honda currently holds a 43-point Manufacturers' Championship advantage (1,299-1,256) over rival Chevrolet. Honda is seeking its fifth NTT INDYCAR SERIES Manufacturers' Championship in the last six years.
  • The 2023 NTT INDYCAR SERIES Drivers' Championship will be decided between Honda drivers and teammates Alex Palou and Scott Dixon, the two are the only drivers who remain in title contention with two races remaining.

Where to Watch
Television coverage of Sunday's Bitnile.com Grand Prix of Portland starts at 3 p.m. EDT on NBC.  Complete, flag-to-flag race coverage also will be available on NBC Peacock, the INDYCAR Radio Network, and SiriusXM INDYCAR Nation (Channel 160).

Honda Racing social media content and video links can be found on:
Instagram        (www.instagram.com/hondaracing_hpd)
TikTok             (www.tiktok.com/hondaracing_hpd)
Twitter             (www.twitter.com/HondaRacing_HPD)
Facebook        (www.facebook.com/HondaRacingHPD)
YouTube         (https://www.youtube.com/HondaRacingHPDTV)

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