Second-row starter Graham Rahal was fortunate not to get caught up in the carnage as day two of Indianapolis 500 qualifying was punctuated by several serious crashes.
Rahal narrowly avoided being collected when John Andretti wrecked Richard Petty's Indy 500 entry during an open practice session between qualification attempts.
Andretti was uninjured in the crash, which severely damaged the Richard Petty-backed No. 43 car prepared by Dreyer & Reinbold. He was on the bubble in 22nd at the time of the accident and was subsequently pushed out of the second day qualifying field as others improved.
"I probably got a little bit hot for the balance of the car and just lost the back end," said Andretti, who hit the wall so hard it punched a hole in the SAFER barrier. "I had a little bit of an 'oops' this morning, too, and managed to save it, but that one jumped too far on me too quickly."
Rahal threw his car sideways in the chute between Turns 3 and 4 to avoid Andretti's spinning car and narrowly missed the inside wall.
"It was pretty interesting from my perspective," Rahal said. "You can't just slam on the brakes because you'll hit the wall. His car exploded. There was stuff everywhere. I was dodging bullets.
"I started to go high, and he started to go high. I just turned left as much as I could, and when I hit the brakes, it locked up."
The other accidents included one that sent Andretti's teammate Mike Conway to hospital and another that kept Alex Tagliani from qualifying. Conway was kept overnight Sunday for treatment of bruised lungs following a vicious hit while practicing before the qualifying session. Tagliani and his No. 34 Conquest Racing Dallara-Honda never got back to speed after a crash shortly after Conway's incident.
In the middle of everything, pole winner Helio Castroneves had a frightening moment of his own when his back-up Penske car belched a spray of oil during practice laps. The culprit was a bad oil fitting, and Castroneves managed to hang on to the shuddering machine and get it safely stopped.
Raphael Matos was the fastest driver in today's qualifying session, taking 12th on the grid for Luczo Dragon Racing.
Scott Sharp provided the main drama by getting into the field at the last minute, bumping E.J. Viso from the grid and bringing Panther Racing back from a tension-filled three days in which two of its cars crashed but both made the field on the second day.