Cool Down Lap: Ed Carpenter On Pole For The 2018 Indy 500, Disaster For Alexander Rossi

Indianapolis’ own Ed Carpenter is on pole for the 102nd running of the Indianapolis 500 after upsetting Team Penske’s dominant weekend. This is Carpenter’s third pole position for Indianapolis 500 and puts an American on pole for people still hung up on that for some reason even though it’s 2018.

Tony George’s step kid came across the line Sunday nearly a mile per hour faster than Talladega Nights star Simon Pagenaud in second. Carpenter’s four-lap average of 229.618 mph was far faster than the 228.761 Pagenaud and his #22 team accomplished. Carpenter had the benefit of teammates Danica Patrick and Spencer Pigot going before him. Like Simon and Helio Castroneves his teammates gave him feedback on track conditions and handling.

Carpenter has proven himself as a master qualifier around Indianapolis. Pole Day has quickly become an Indianapolis home game for Ed as the grandstands erupt in a chorus of cheers as he clicks off fast lap after fast lap. There was a man who took off his shirt in the stands yesterday to wave Ed by. Always appreciate the race fans who point drivers the correct way on the track, tracks can be confusing.

The question this year is can Ed put together an entire race or will he continue his Three Billboards Outside of Ebbing Missouri trend and completely fall apart in the second half and you’re left wondering why Woody Harrelson couldn’t have stuck around for the final 45 minutes. If Ed can keep it together he might actually be a threat to win. Or finish 31st.

Alexander Rossi Goes From 10th to 32nd

Everyone talks about how drivers can move up the starting order on Sunday, no one ever wants to talk about falling down the order. Alexander Rossi experienced the latter on Sunday as he went from starting 10th to 32nd by the end of his qualifying run. A slow leak in the tire restricted Rossi to a four-lap average of only 224.935 mph. Rossi’s struggle run was still faster than Conor Daly’s incident-free run as the #17 team continues to search for anything that resembles speed. It’s a little ironic a car painted like a fighter jet is the slowest car in the field.

Rossi had the second worst case scenario on Sunday. He didn’t crash but he killed his track position before the race. The #27 car has been solid all week and Rossi has quickly become one of the best wheelmen around the speedway. Coming from 32nd won’t be a problem, he fell that far back during his 2016 win.

Complete Results

1   Ed Carpenter 20 Chevrolet 229.618
2   Simon Pagenaud 22 Chevrolet 228.761
3   Will Power 12 Chevrolet 228.607
4   Josef Newgarden 1 Chevrolet 228.405
5   Sebastien Bourdais 18 Honda 228.142
6   Spencer Pigot 21 Chevrolet 228.107
7   Danica Patrick 13 Chevrolet 228.090
8   Helio Castroneves 3 Chevrolet 227.859
9   Scott Dixon 9 Honda 227.262
10   Tony Kanaan 14 Chevrolet 227.664
11   Matheus Leist 4 Chevrolet 227.571
12   Marco Andretti 98 Honda 227.288
13   Zachary Claman De Melo 19 Honda 226.999
14   Ryan Hunter-Reay 28 Honda 226.788
15   Charlie Kimball 23 Chevrolet 226.657
16   Takuma Sato 30 Honda 226.557
17   Kyle Kaiser 32 Chevrolet 226.398
18   Robert Wickens 6 Honda 226.296
19   James Davison 33 Chevrolet 226.255
20   Max Chilton 59 Chevrolet 226.212
21   Carlos Munoz 29 Honda 226.048
22   Gabby Chaves 88 Chevrolet 226.007
23   Stefan Wilson 25 Honda 225.863
24   Sage Karam 24 Chevrolet 225.823
25   Zach Veach 26 Honda 225.748
26   Oriol Servia 64 Honda 225.699
27   J.R. Hildebrand 66 Chevrolet 225.418
28   Jay Howard 7 Honda 225.388
29   Ed Jones 10 Honda 225.362
30   Graham Rahal 15 Honda 225.327
31   Jack Harvey 60 Honda 225.254
32   Alexander Rossi 27 Honda 224.935
33   Conor Daly 17 Honda 224.429
34   James Hinchcliffe 5 Honda 224.784
35   Pippa Mann 63 Honda 224.360

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