Scott McLaughlin secures pole for Indy 500, as Team Penske sweep front row

Scott McLaughlin will lead an all Team Penske front row at the 108th running of the Indy 500

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Scott McLaughlin clinched the P1 Award in IndyCar‘s Fast Six qualifying for the 108th Indy 500, leading Team Penske to a historic front-row sweep. 

This marks only the second time a single team has dominated the front row of the Indy 500 as Team Penske last achieved this feat in 1988, with Rick Mears on pole, Danny Sullivan starting second, and Al Unser in third.

McLaughlin, driving the No.3 Team Penske Chevrolet, set the fastest four-lap average pole speed in the race’s history at 234.220 mph. This is McLaughlin‘s first career Indy 500 pole, significantly improving his previous best qualifying position of 14th in 2023.

“Welcome to the party,” McLaughlin said. “The Pennzoil Chevy was unreal. There’s so much pride in being able to do it. I’m working hard. 

“Indy hasn’t been kind to me, and a lot of it was my doing. I need to work on things. This is the first step. The Thirsty 3’s, baby, we’re coming.”

Joining McLaughlin on the front row are his Team Penske teammates. Will Power, two-time IndyCar champion and 2018 Indy 500 winner, will start second after posting a speed of 233.917 mph in the No.12 Chevrolet. 

Reigning Indianapolis 500 winner and Josef Newgarden rounds out the front row with a speed of 233.808 mph in the No.2 Chevrolet.

Will Power at 2024 Indy 500 Pole Day | Penske Entertainment: Dana Garrett
Will Power at 2024 Indy 500 Pole Day | Penske Entertainment: Dana Garrett

It’s also the 19th time Team Penske has secured pole at the Indy 500, extending their own record, which came on the hottest day of this year’s event, with air temperatures reaching 91 degrees and track temperatures peaking at 129 degrees.

Chevrolet-powered drivers dominated the top eight positions in the 33-car field for the race. Alexander Rossi will start fourth with a speed of 233.090 mph in the No.7 McLaren Chevrolet. 

Kyle Larson, rookie and 2021 NASCAR champion, secured fifth place at 232.846 mph in the No.17 McLaren Chevrolet. Santino Ferrucci completed the top six with a speed of 232.692 mph in the No.14 Chevrolet fielded by A.J. Foyt Enterprises.

Among the Honda-powered drivers, Felix Rosenqvist was the fastest, securing ninth place with a speed of 232.305 mph in the No.60 Honda of Meyer Shank Racing.

Katherine Legge at 2024 Indy 500 Bump Day | Penske Entertainment: Karl Zemlin
Katherine Legge at 2024 Indy 500 Bump Day | Penske Entertainment: Karl Zemlin

Nolan Siegel the Bump Day casualty

In the Last Chance Qualifying – Bump Day – Katherine Legge, Marcus Ericsson, and Graham Rahal claimed the final three starting spots. 

Legge qualified 31st with a speed of 230.092 mph in the No.51 Honda. The 2022 Indy 500 winner Ericsson will start 32nd at 230.027 mph in the No.28 Honda of Andretti Global. 

Rahal, who avoided being bumped from the field for the second consecutive year, secured the final starting spot with a speed of 229.974 mph in the No.15 Honda of Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing.

“I’ve been there – last year, it still stings,” Rahal said. “It’s not much better being 33rd, I can tell you that. At least we’re in the field, and we’re going to go racing.”

Rookie Nolan Siegel failed to qualify. Siegel, who was bumped earlier during Last Chance Qualifying, crashed in the No.18 Dale Coyne Racing Honda on his final attempt. Fortunately, he was unhurt.

“I wish we could have shown that we deserve to be in the ‘500,’” Siegel said. “But we’ve had a difficult couple of days, and we pulled through it as a team. We did everything we possibly could. I feel like we maximized the runs today. That’s all you can do.”

The average speed of the 33-car field is 231.943 mph, the second-fastest in history. Last year’s record field average was 232.184 mph.

Next up is a practice session for the 33 starters on Monday, before the 108th Indianapolis 500 on Sunday, May 26.

108th Indy 500 Qualifying Results

Results of qualifying Sunday for the 108th Indianapolis 500 event on the 2.5-mile Indianapolis Motor Speedway following Bump Day / Pole Day.

PositionDriverTeamEngineSpeed (mph)
1Scott McLaughlinTeam PenskeChevrolet234.220
2Will PowerTeam PenskeChevrolet233.917
3Josef NewgardenTeam PenskeChevrolet233.808
4Alexander RossiMcLarenChevrolet233.090
5Kyle LarsonMcLaren/Rick HendrickChevrolet232.848
6Santino FerrucciAJ Foyt RacingChevrolet232.692
7Rinus VeeKayEd Carpenter RacingChevrolet232.610
8Pato O’WardMcLarenChevrolet232.584
9Felix RosenqvistMeyer Shank RacingHonda232.305
10Takuma SatoRLL RacingHonda232.171
11Kyle KirkwoodAndrettiHonda230.993
12Ryan Hunter-ReayDreyer & Reinbold RacingChevrolet230.567
13Colton HertaAndrettiHonda232.316
14Alex PalouChip Ganassi RacingHonda232.306
15Callum IlottJuncos Hollinger RacingChevrolet232.230
16Marcus ArmstrongChip Ganassi RacingHonda232.183
17Ed CarpenterEd Carpenter RacingChevrolet232.017
18Kyffin SimpsonChip Ganassi RacingHonda231.948
19Marco AndrettiAndrettiHonda231.890
20Helio CastronevesMeyer Shank RacingHonda231.871
21Scott DixonChip Ganassi RacingHonda231.851
22Agustin CanapinoJuncos Hollinger RacingChevrolet231.847
23Sting Ray RobbDale Coyne RacingChevrolet231.826
24Christian RasmussenDreyer & Reinbold RacingChevrolet231.682
25Tom BlomqvistMeyer Shank RacingHonda231.578
26Romain GrosjeanAndrettiChevrolet231.514
27Linus LundqvistChip Ganassi RacingHonda231.506
28Christian LundgaardRLL RacingHonda231.465
29Conor DalyEd Carpenter RacingChevrolet231.243
30Pietro FittipaldiDale Coyne RacingHonda231.100
31Katherine LeggeRLL RacingHonda230.092
32Marcus EricssonChip Ganassi RacingHonda230.027
33Graham RahalRLL RacingHonda229.974
John Smith
John Smithhttps://total-motorsport.com
Editor at Total-Motorsport.com and all round Motorsport journalist specialising in Formula 1, IndyCar and Formula E.
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