Justin Wilson broke Penske's run of consecutive poles this year to score the Dreyer & Reinbold team's first since 2002. It was the culmination of a commanding performance around Toronto's charismatic street course from the Briton, who last topped qualifying in the Champ Car finale (held under IRL regs) at Long Beach in 2008.
Wilson cruised through the first two segments of qualifying without having to use Firestone's grippier red tires, and thus headed into the Firestone Fast Six with two sets of reds available. It was the first time since the alternate tires were introduced last year that a driver had been able to make it through to Q3 using only primaries. This stat was made more impressive still when he topped the Q2 segment.
Wilson then swiftly produced a 1m00.2710sec lap in the Fast Six session to secure provisional pole, and that time proved unbeatable. Predictably, championship leader Will Power (Penske) was Wilson's nearest rival, and he had been able to preserve one set of fresh reds to the final session, but he wound up 0.2sec adrift. Power's Penske teammate Helio Castroneves took third, but ended the session in a run-off zone.
Ryan Hunter-Reay was fourth for Andretti Autosport, which for the first time this year saw all four of its cars reach the top 12. While the Long Beach winner was the only AA driver to make it through to the Fast Six, he was still able to beat the Chip Ganassi Racing duo of Dario Franchitti and Scott Dixon whose Friday form appeared to have deserted them.
The third Penske of Ryan Briscoe will start Honda Indy Toronto from seventh, alongside Tony Kanaan (Andretti) while FAZZT's Alex Tagliani and Marco Andretti (Andretti) will comprise the fifth row.
Tagliani's compatriot Paul Tracy endured a disastrous session and will start 24th for KV Racing after spinning in the first part of qualifying.
Pos Driver Team Time Session
1. Justin Wilson Dreyer & Reinbold 1m00.2710s Fast six
2. Will Power Penske 1m00.4563s Fast six
3. Helio Castroneves Penske 1m00.8159s Fast six
4. Ryan Hunter-Reay Andretti 1m00.8397s Fast six
5. Dario Franchitti Ganassi 1m00.9477s Fast six
6. Scott Dixon Ganassi 1m00.9541s Fast six
7. Ryan Briscoe Penske 1m00.9141s Top 12
8. Tony Kanaan Andretti 1m00.9212s Top 12
9. Alex Tagliani FAZZT 1m00.9996s Top 12
10. Marco Andretti Andretti 1m01.2297s Top 12
11. Raphael Matos De Ferran Dragon 1m01.2820s Top 12
12. Danica Patrick Andretti 1m01.4580s Top 12
13. EJ Viso KV 1m01.4087s Group 1
14. Graham Rahal Newman/Haas 1m01.7024s Group 2
15. Dan Wheldon Panther 1m01.6926s Group 1
16. Bertrand Baguette Conquest 1m01.8072s Group 2
17. Mario Romancini Conquest 1m01.9575s Group 1
18. Takuma Sato KV 1m01.8130s Group 2
19. Tomas Scheckter Dreyer & Reinbold 1m02.0426s Group 1
20. Mario Moraes KV 1m02.0953s Group 2
21. Simona de Silvestro HVM 1m02.0547s Group 1
22. Hideki Mutoh Newman/Haas 1m02.1453s Group 2
23. Alex Lloyd Dale Coyne 1m02.6142s Group 1
24. Paul Tracy KV 1m02.5387s Group 2
25. Milka Duno Dale Coyne Group 1
26. Vitor Meira Foyt 1m03.0741s Group 2