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Tagliani grabs IndyCar pole at TMS for second straight year

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FORT WORTH, Texas (June 8, 2012) - Alex Tagliani earned the pole position Friday for the IZOD IndyCar Series Firestone 550, marking the second consecutive year he was the top qualifier at Texas Motor Speedway.


Tagliani (No. 98 Team Barracuda-BHA Honda) posted a two-lap average of 215.691 miles per hour (48.5695 seconds) to unseat reigning Indy 500 champion Dario Franchitti for the top position and notch his first IZOD IndyCar Series pole of the season and eighth of his career. It was his first pole since being the top qualifier for the opening race of the Firestone Twin 275s at Texas Motor Speedway last June and the first IZOD IndyCar Series career pole for Bryan Herta Autosport with Curb-Agajanian.


Franchitti (No. 10 Energizer Honda) will start on the outside of the front row with his two-lap average of 215.646 mph, marking his third front-row start of the season. His others were a pole at Long Beach and an outside pole at Brazil.


Honda swept the first two rows as Graham Rahal (No. 38 Service Central Honda) qualified third at 215.554 mph and Scott Dixon (No. 9 Target Honda), Franchitti's Target Chip Ganassi teammate, was fourth at 215.331 mph. IZOD IndyCar Series championship leader Will Power (No. 12 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet) was the top Chevrolet qualifier at 215.116 mph and will start fifth in the 25-car field.


The IZOD IndyCar Series will return to the track at 6:45 p.m. for a final 30-minute practice session in preparation for Saturday evening's Firestone 550.


Tickets for the Firestone 550, which will start at 7:30 p.m. CT, are available by calling (817) 215-8500, visiting www.texasmotorspeedway or visiting the Texas Motor Speedway ticket office.

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