IndyCar: Mikhail Aleshin first Russian IndyCar pole winner
LONG POND, Pa. – While an international theme has captivated sports fans this month with the 2016 Olympic Games, Verizon IndyCar Series drivers added their own international flavor in qualifying for the ABC Supply 500 at Pocono Raceway, led by a first time pole winner.
Mikhail Aleshin, driving the No. 7 SMP Racing Schmidt Peterson Honda, became the first Russian driver to win a pole position in Indy car history, taking top honors in Verizon P1 Award qualifying today with a two-lap average speed of 220.445 mph on the 2.5-mile triangular oval.
“It’s my first pole in INDYCAR and I am so happy to bring up the car, the No. 7 SMP Racing, up there,” said Aleshin. “The team did an amazing job. We had a couple of moments in Turn 1, but I decided to keep it flat and see what would happen. (Hitting) the wall didn’t happen, but pole position happened. Amazing.”