Takuma Sato qualifies third in his Dale Coyne Racing with RWR Honda. Five-time Texas race winner Scott Dixon to start fifth. First oval race of the 2022 NTT INDYCAR SERIES season.
Takuma Sato led the Honda effort in qualifying today at Texas Motor Speedway and will start third in the first oval race of the 2022 NTT INDYCAR SERIES. Sato took his #51 Dale Coyne Racing with RWR Honda around the high-banked 1.5-mile Texas oval for a two-lap average speed of 221.094 mph, just 0.026 mph slower than the average of 221.110 by pole qualifier Felix Rosenqvist.
Scott Dixon, a Texas winner five previous times, will start fifth in his Chip Ganassi Racing Honda; 2021 Indianapolis 500 winner Helio Castroneves in sixth; with Colton Herta ninth for Andretti Autosport in the 27-car field.
Of the Honda drivers making their Texas debuts this weekend, Formula One veteran Romain Grosjean qualified 13th; rookie Devlin DeFrancesco will start 17th; and seven-time NASCAR Cup champion Jimmie Johnson qualified 18th.
This weekend’s EXPEL 375 at Texas Motor Speedway will be the first oval race of the 2022 NTT INDYCAR SERIES season, held on the 1.5-mile super speedway where Honda’s Scott Dixon won the opening round of a double-header INDYCAR weekend in 2021.
Honda-powered drivers have won 13 times at Texas in Indy car competition, starting in 2004 with a 1-2 finish for Andretti Green Racing [now Andretti Autosport] teammates Tony Kanaan and Dario Franchitti.
Last year, Dixon dominated for his fifth career victory at TMS, and second consecutive Texas Motor Speedway win, leading a race-high 206 laps. Honda drivers led every lap of the 212-lap event last year, with Dixon’s Chip Ganassi teammate, Palou, leading the other six laps. Dixon’s other Honda-powered wins at TMS came in 2008, 2018 and 2020.
Other Honda-powered winners at TMS include Helio Castroneves (2006, 2009), Sam Hornish, Jr. (2007), Ryan Briscoe (2010), Dario Franchitti (2011, Race 1) and Will Power (2011, Race 2). The late Justin Wilson scored his final Indy car victory here in 2012, while Graham Rahal claimed victory in 2016’s weather-delayed event.