INDIANAPOLIS (May 19, 2019) – Indianapolis 500 Fast Nine Qualifying Notes
- For the sixth time in seven years, Ed Carpenter Racing will have a front row starting position for the Indianapolis 500; but for the first time, the team will hold two of the three positions. Additionally, Ed Carpenter Racing’s Chevrolets will fill out three of the top four starting positions in next Sunday’s 500-mile classic. Ed Carpenter, Spencer Pigot and Ed Jones qualified second, third and fourth, respectively.
- The fastest nine drivers from yesterday’s Day 1 qualifications were locked into the field and advanced to today’s Fast Nine Shootout, including Ed Carpenter Racing’s three Chevrolets. Pigot was the fastest driver yesterday with a four-lap average of 230.083 miles per hour (mph). Jones was 6th overall with a speed of 229.440 mph while Carpenter was just behind in 7th at 229.349 mph. Ed Carpenter Racing was the only multi-car team to have all cars make the Fast Nine.
- The 2019 Fast Nine Shootout was delayed nearly four hours as rains moved through the Indianapolis Motor Speedway area. Instead of starting at 1:15 p.m. ET, the first Fast Nine challenger rolled out at 5:01 p.m. Drivers in the Fast Nine had to make one four-lap attempt, in order based on slowest to fastest from yesterday’s qualifying times.
- Carpenter was the third car out to qualify. His laps of 230.372, 230.023, 229.656 and 229.508 gave him a four-lap average of 229.889 miles per hour. Carpenter was the provisional pole sitter until Simon Pagenaud made his run and bumped the ECR team owner to the second spot. Carpenter will start his No. 20 Preferred Freezer Services Chevrolet from the middle of Row 1 in his 16th Indianapolis 500.
- Jones was out immediately after Carpenter in his No. 63 Ed Carpenter Racing Scuderia Corsa Chevrolet. His four laps boasted speeds of 230.196, 229.505, 229.486 and 229.400 for a four-lap average of 229.646 mph. For his third Indianapolis 500, Jones will start from the inside of Row 2.
- Pigot was the final car to make a run at the 2019 Indy 500 pole position. He turned laps at 230.058, 229.841, 229.792 and 229.614 mph. His four-lap average of 229.826 placed him in between Carpenter and Jones, giving ECR the second, third and fourth starting positions. Pigot’s fourth Indianapolis start will begin from the outside of Row 1.
- Carpenter, the only owner/driver in the NTT IndyCar Series field, has earned his fifth front row starting position in the past seven years. Carpenter is a three-time Indianapolis 500 pole winner, earning the coveted first starting position in 2013, 2014 and 2018. He started second in 2017, a position he matched in today’s qualifying. Carpenter returns to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway on the heels of his career-best finish. After starting from first last year, he led 65 laps – the most of all drivers. At the end of the 500 miles, Carpenter finished 2nd.
- Today’s qualifying effort is the highest of Pigot’s career, besting a sixth-place starting position in last year’s Indy 500. In last weekend’s INDYCAR Grand Prix at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course, Pigot finished a season-high 5th. The 25-year-old is in his fourth year as an NTT IndyCar Series driver and fourth season with Ed Carpenter Racing. All but four of Pigot’s 44 Indy car starts have come with ECR, though the 2018 Indianapolis 500 was his first “500” with the team.
- Jones has matched his career-best NTT IndyCar Series starting position with today’s effort. He burst onto the scene with a third-place finish in his Indianapolis 500 debut in 2017. In addition to being the highest finishing rookie in the field, he went on to win the NTT IndyCar Series Rookie of the Year title. Last year, Jones collected two more podium finishes with Chip Ganassi Racing before joining Ed Carpenter Racing with Scuderia Corsa. The 24-year-old is also coming off of his best finish of the year as he took the checkered flag 6th in last weekend’s INDYCAR Grand Prix.
- Carpenter, Pigot and Jones will hit the track again tomorrow for two more hours of practice before embarking on three days of media and promotional activities. Final Indianapolis 500 practice will take place on Friday, May 24 during Carb Day festivities. NBC’s coverage of the 103rd Running of the Indianapolis will commence at 11 a.m. ET on Sunday, May 26 with the green flag scheduled to fall at 12:45 p.m.