Tony Kanaan felt that getting onto the second row of the Indianapolis 500 grid was "almost a miracle" given his late change of car on Saturday.
The former IndyCar Series champion had been unhappy with his car and a long way off the pace during the practice days, so decided to switch to the chassis raced by his Andretti Green Racing teammate Hideki Mutoh at Kansas two weeks earlier. The car was quickly given the front and rear wings from Kanaan's regular No. 11 machine and some appropriate sponsor stickers were applied to a chassis still basically wearing the red, white and blue livery of Mutoh's No. 27 entry.
"It's Hideki's tub with parts off of my other car," Kanaan explained. "We found out that the 11 car wasn't fast enough, and we didn't know why, so we just decided to change everything. We changed engines. We changed the gearbox. We changed chassis, and we did go two miles an hour quicker. What it is? We don't know. We'll find out this next week and try to see what really went wrong with that car.
"Qualifying on the first day for us, at this point, it was almost a miracle."
Kanaan's original Pole Day qualifying run had put him eighth, but the laps were disqualified due to the car being underweight. However he then improved his speed when forced to make a second run, so kept up his record of starting from the front two rows on each Indianapolis appearance.
"It was our mistake -- not even a mistake. How can you blame somebody? The guys worked so hard all night long," he said. "The car was a little light, so we had to do it again. I have to thank the IndyCar officials for doing me a favor because I don't think I would have gone out again. I thought, 'I'm getting too old for this, so I am not going to go out there again.' I came back out, and the track was better. The wind had died down.
"I wasn't expecting to have an easy day. We're pretty pleased."
The Brazilian has yet to win the 500, although he started from pole in 2005, finished second in 2004 and third in 2003.