American Racing

Indianapolis 500: Carpenter beats Penske drivers to pole, Patrick 7th

Local hero Ed Carpenter took his third Indy 500 pole position ahead of the three regular Penske drivers, as his teams cars finished first, sixth and seventh in the session

Carpenter was the penultimate driver to run in the session, and had ended the first day of the two day qualifying second behind returning Penske driver Helio Castroneves. Carpenter averaged 229.618mph ahead of Simon Pagenuad with a 228.761mph average around the brickyard, denying Penske a front row lockout with Will Power lining up third and Josef Newgarden fourth. Honda only had two cars in the fast nine and Sebastien Bourdais was the fastest of those two cars, taking fifth in the session ahead of Pigot and Patrick, who produced a stunning performance in her first open wheel qualifying in seven years.

Castroneves was last to run and all thought he could challenge Carpenter for the pole. In the end though, he came nowhere near, going slower than he had on Saturday and winding up eighth in the session ahead of only Scott Dixon out of those in the fast nine. A.J. Foyt Racing completed the fourth row with Tony Kanaan tenth ahead of highly impressive rookie teammate Mathieus Leist, the teams effort doubly impressive as they beat all of the Andretti Autosport cars.

Marco Andretti was the highest of the six cars in 12th, with Ryan Hunter-Reay in 14th, Stefan Wilson and Zach Veach in 23rd and 24th respectively and Alexander Rossi having a horrible session and winding up 32nd and ahead of only Conor Daly on the grid. Rossi’s session was compromised with a very loose car with his final lap being only around 221mph thus consigning him to a last row starting spot ahead of only Daly and alongside Jack Harvey. The two absentee’s following bump day were of course Pippa Mann and James Hinchcliffe, who was a shock high profile loser on bump day and the subject of scrambled efforts to try and somehow get him to start the race in another car, although how likely that is remains unclear.

Feature Image Credit: Verizon IndyCar Series

Credit: Verizon IndyCar Series

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