Energy was targeted on level for pole, not the document
Energy delivered his 68th pole place for the season finale to turn out to be probably the most profitable qualifier in Indy automotive historical past, edging forward of former pole king Mario Andretti.
However the Staff Penske-Chevrolet star admitted that he wasn’t considering of the document a lot as successful a degree to push his championship lead out to 21 factors, and possibly 22 since IndyCar additionally grants a degree for main a lap.
“Yeah, that was the main focus, that is all that was on my thoughts,” mentioned the Australian star. “It had nothing to do with the variety of poles. I have to get poles to provide myself the perfect likelihood right here.
“So we ticked that field and likewise one other field with the 68. Superb begin to the weekend. Tremendous targeted on tomorrow.
“It is one level. I plan on main the primary lap, which is one other level, and should you get an actual run you may lead probably the most laps, it is one other. Simply hold going like that. Yep, tremendous targeted, man. I need to give all of the boys my greatest, give my crew the perfect as a result of that is what they’ve finished for me this yr.”
That mentioned, Energy admitted that being greeted and congratulated on pitlane by each Mario Andretti and Roger Penske was a “surreal” expertise.
“I noticed Roger there, I noticed Mario there and all of the cameras; I believed, ‘That is actually surreal,’ he mentioned. “It simply blows my thoughts… I surpassed Mario and clearly I drive for Roger, however simply to have these two legends there congratulating me… surreal.
“And a variety of gratitude for the probabilities and the alternatives I have been given over the past decade and a half. Very lucky. Very lucky, and I need to repay them again with a championship tomorrow…
“I could not have a good time it very a lot as a result of I am so targeted on tomorrow and I do not need to give out an excessive amount of vitality as a result of I will want it tomorrow, however… yeah, a day you will keep in mind for certain. One thing I will keep in mind the remainder of my life.”
Energy might scarcely have requested for a greater qualifying session, since teammate and closest title rival Josef Newgarden spun out on the Corkscrew, and the following purple flag additionally interrupted Scott Dixon’s qualifying technique. Dixon, like Newgarden, is 21 factors behind Energy however shall be beginning 13th.
“That made issues simpler,” mentioned Energy. “Much less stress for certain as a result of we did not must shadow precisely what these guys did. Yeah, undoubtedly took some stress off.”
Requested whether or not he was considering purely in championship phrases tomorrow or serious about the race win, Energy mentioned he was going to attempt to simply be methodical and never get forward of himself. He has on no account dominated out Dixon.
“I’m simply considering begin, after which simply get into that rhythm after which it can kind of play out as we go based mostly on what the opposite rivals do. Yeah, simply want strong day…
“[Dixon] has an amazing spot as a result of he did not use his tires up [ in Q2 and Firestone Fast Six] and he isn’t that far again. So yeah. Robust. Robust race. It is, far, removed from gained, and I am actually conscious of that.”