The Indy 500 starting grid is set

Tony Kanaan was the fastest driver outside the Fast 9, in the qualifying session today for the Indy 500.

The A. J. Foyt Racing driver beat his young teammate Matheus Leist and Marco Andretti in the fight for 10th starting position. Zachary Claman De Melo took a big jump up the grid compared to yesterday’s Bump Day, and will be starting the race from 13th.

Takuma Sato also made a big jump to 16th, which was a significant improvement compared to the Saturday.

Alexander Rossi went the other way. He did the 10th fastest time yesterday, but will only be starting the race from 32nd. A huge disappointment for the Andretti driver, who complained about the car being very strange, almost putting it into the wall. Conor Daly is the 33rd and final driver in the field.

Tony Kanaan
Photo: / Jim Haines

Danica Patrick was the first drive out in the Fast 9. She started with her best lap and gradually got slower and slower over the 4 laps, but about one mile per hour.

Scott Dixon was the next driver. Only his first lap was better than the one from Patrick, and then ended up being almost one mile per hour slower than her on the 4-lap average.

Josef Newgarden put down the fastest first lap of the day, before slowing a little for the next too, but ended up picking up his pace at the end. He did indeed manage the best average of the day so far.

Spencer Pigot was fast from the beginning, but dropped off. He did however make it in behind Newgarden and in front of Patrick.

Sebastien Bourdais had a very slower warming up lap, but had good speed on his first flying lap. But he had a very slow third lap, so he had to settle for second behind Newgarden.

Will Power was the 4th last guy to go on the track. His first lap was the best of the day, followed by an almost identical lap. The speed dropped off a little on lap 3, but he was still the fastest over 4 laps so far.

Danica Patrick
Photo: / Chris Owens

Simon Pagenaud should try to beat his two Team Penske teammates. He started by doing the fastest warm up lap of the day, and was the first driver into the 229 miles today. He speed dropped a bit over the 4 laps, but was still the fastest – and not the least, the fastest Frenchman.

Ed Carpenter should try to break the Penske dominance. And his first lap was 230.088 miles per hour – impressive start. Second lap was marginally slower and the third and fourth dipped a little too. But he still managed to do an average of more than 229 miles per hour – 369,5 kph on average.

Helio Castroneves was the last driver. He couldn’t follow the speed of Carpenter at all, and was slower than many of the opposition too. The time just went slower and slower for each lap, and he ended up qualifying 8th.

So it was Ed Carpenter on his third Pole Position for the Indy 500. Followed by Pagenaud, Power, Newgarden, Bourdais, Pigot, Patrick, Castroneves and Dixon.

Ed Carpenter
Photo: / Chris Owens

Luckily both qualifying days have been without accidents, so right now there are 33 fully prepared cars, ready for the upcoming days.

There will be more testing to do, before the big race will be run on Sunday, with the green flag being waved at 12.21 local (18.21 CET).

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