Tristan Vautier backed up his fastest practice time on Friday with pole for Sunday's Firestone Indy Lights race at Trois-Rivieres, Quebec.
After a series of lackluster races and without a win since Milwaukee in June, the Frenchman secured his first pole since Iowa also that month. It's his third pole of the season.
Edmonton winner Carlos Munoz and Colombian countryman Gustavo Yacaman were next up, ahead of Esteban Guerrieri, Peter Dempsey and Sebastian Saavedra.
Of the top six, only Munoz is making his first ever Trois-Rivieres start and though Vautier's a rookie in Indy Lights he won one of his two Star Mazda starts here a year ago.
For the second year in a row, qualifying for the Grand Prix of Trois-Rivières was decided by a two-segment knockout session, similar to the Firestone Fast Six in the IZOD IndyCar Series. The first segment was a 30-minute session in which all cars battled for the top six advancing spots. Vautier led that session with a lap of 57.5010 seconds, followed by Team Moore Racing's Yacaman. Last year's pole sitter and race winner Guerrieri, and teammates Saavedra and Munoz all advanced to the final segment.
Segment 2 was a 10-minute shootout to decide pole position. Teams toyed with strategy for the first few minutes, and no cars went out on track until two minutes after the green flag dropped. Dempsey was the first car out.
The top three drivers went under the standing outright track record set last year by Guerrieri at 57.4541 seconds. Vautier's pole time of 57.1394 is the new standard for drivers to beat in the 1:45 p.m. (ET) race Sunday afternoon. Edmonton race winner Munoz will start alongside him, followed by Yacaman, Guerrieri, Dempsey and Saavedra.
The race goes green on Sunday afternoon at 1:45 p.m. Eastern.
Pos Driver Team Time Gap
1. Tristan Vautier Schmidt 57.1394s
2. Carlos Munoz Andretti 57.2005s + 0.0611s
3. Gustavo Yacaman Moore 57.3530s + 0.2136s
4. Esteban Guerrieri Schmidt 57.4847s + 0.3453s
5. Peter Dempsey Belardi Auto 57.5743s + 0.4349s
6. Sebastian Saavedra AFS/Andretti 57.6820s + 0.5426s
7. Victor Carbone Schmidt 58.0239s + 0.8845s
8. Oliver Webb Schmidt 58.0665s + 0.9271s
9. Juan Pablo García Jeffrey Mark 58.2994s + 1.1600s
10. Jorge Goncalvez Belardi Auto 58.5828s + 1.4434s
11. David Ostella Moore 59.0208s + 1.8814s