(Reuters) - Former Formula One driver Romain Grosjean secured his first IndyCar pole position on Friday in just his third race ahead of Saturday's Grand Prix at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
The Frenchman put up a blistering top lap of 1:09.4396 just a month after launching his series debut, edging out two-time NTT Indycar Series Champion Josef Newgarden by more than a tenth of a second in a dazzling effort for Dale Coyne Racing.
"When I saw the (first qualifying) group I was in, I was like, ‘Oh, dear, if we can get out of the first group, we’re going to be OK,’ and we did," said Grosjean, a veteran of 179 Formula One races. "That last few laps, we were on it. What a day for us. I’m happier than I have been in a very long time."
The 35-year-old made the move to IndyCar after nine seasons with Formula One, after a fiery and frightening crash in November's Bahrain Grand Prix.
(Reporting by Amy Tennery; Editing by Sam Holmes)