Honda Racing–Munoz Leads Honda Qualifiers in Iowa

• Seventh top-10 qualifying performance of 2014

• First “short oval”round of 2014 IndyCar Series

• Second Saturday night event of the season

For the second consecutive Verizon IndyCar Series race weekend, rookie points leader Carlos Munoz led Honda qualifiers Friday at Iowa Speedway, posting the fifth-fastest speed in his Andretti Autosport Honda.  Today’s result follows his third-place qualifying effort last week at the 2.5-mile Pocono Raceway oval in Pennsylvania.Munoz currently holds a 77-point lead in the Rookie of the Year standings – over fellow Honda driver Mikhail Aleshin – and is ranked sixth in the overall Drivers’ Championship standings.

Munoz and teammate Marco Andretti were the only Honda-powered entries to record top-10 qualifying runs on the banked 7/8ths mile Iowa oval, as changing track conditions – brought about by intermittent rain showers throughout the day and NASCAR Truck Series qualifying immediately prior to the IndyCar session, caught out several teams and drivers.Saturday night’s 300-lap run, the first of two “short oval” races in the 2014 Verizon IndyCar Series, begins with live network television coverage at 8 p.m. EDTon the NBC Sports network.

Carlos Munoz(#34 Andretti Autosport Honda) 5thfastest in qualifying:  “Today the teammates’ help was totally different than the help I had at Pocono, because I was almost the last to qualify [at Pocono], and we were almost back-to-back to qualify today in Iowa.  For sure, it’s always helpful [to have teammates] because you have an idea of what the track will be like. It was an okay qualifying. I think everyone gets better as the session goes on.  More important is the race tomorrow – it is 300 laps, a long race. We’ll see what happens.”