The Indianapolis 500 field is set for next Sunday's 96th running, after a fairly uneventful Bump Day that saw all of the nine car/driver combinations left out of the field on Saturday safely make the field early on, and no additional entries coming forward to threaten their positions.
It marks the first time since 2004 there has not been a single bump attempt once the field of 33 cars has been filled. In 2005, 2006 and 2007, at least one or two other cars made attempts, but only in 2005 was someone able to bump into the field – an 11th hour third car addition by A.J. Foyt to field Felipe Giaffone after he was shopping, to bump out then-rookie Arie Luyendyk Jr.
For Bryan Clauson, Ed Carpenter and Oriol Servia – who all crashed on Saturday – it put an end to a stressful 24 hours for their crews, who put in multiple hours rebuilding their cars and, in Carpenter's case, preparing the back-up (which had been tipped as a potential wild-card for a late bumping effort) after crashes on Pole Day. Servia's No. 22 Panther/Dreyer & Reinbold Racing car was quickest (223.752mph) of the nine non-qualified cars in the morning practice session, while Carpenter tested his backup No. 20T Fuzzy's Ultra Premium Vodka car after the track opened for time trials.
Sebastien Bourdais, who was bumped from the top 24 set on Pole Day, was the fastest qualifier on Bump Day with a four-lap average time of 223.760mph. He'll be joined on Row 9 by Indy 500 rookie Wade Cunningham (223.258) and Servia (222.393).
Servia, the fourth to make a qualifying attempt on Bump Day, recorded a four-lap average speed of 222.393mph. Clauson's No. 39 Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing car posted a conservative average of 214.455mph, while Carpenter was the final qualifier at 2 p.m. and turned a 222.324mph average.
All three allowed themselves a few moments to decompress before returning to the 2.5-mile oval to apply their race setups on a humid afternoon that is forecast to be matched on Race Day May 27.
“This Fuzzy's team did a great job getting this 20T car together,” said Carpenter (ABOVE). “We went a little consecutive with the qualifying run, just so we can get in the show. The whole crew just put their heads down began preparing the back up at around 4 p.m. Saturday. No complaining; just a bunch of professional guys.
“We found some things that were hampering us. The whole month just didn't go as we had scripted it. I think I have been lucky for the last few years here with first-day qualifying. I guess this year it was our tough one.”
Carpenter is on the inside of Row 10, alongside Mike Conway (222.319) and Katherine Legge (221.624). On Row 11 are Clauson (214.455), Simona de Silvestro (213.393) and Formula 1 veteran and Indy 500 rookie Jean Alesi (210.094, RIGHT).
“It's definitely a massive relief after the week or two that we've had,” said Legge, who didn't complete the Rookie Orientation Program until May 18 after her Dragon Racing team completed its switch from Lotus to Chevrolet engines. “We basically qualified our racecar. We haven't had time on track to work on qualifying setup or anything like that, so we needed to find a car that was easy to drive at this stage.
“I am a rookie and the team did a good job of giving me a very solid, very stable racecar. I'm pretty sure that it's very close to the car we will race."
Pos Driver Team/Car Speed
1. Ryan Briscoe Penske DW12-Chevrolet 226.484
2. James Hinchcliffe Andretti DW12-Chevrolet 226.481
3. Ryan Hunter-Reay Andretti DW12-Chevrolet 226.240
4. Marco Andretti Andretti DW12-Chevrolet 225.456
5. Will Power Penske DW12-Chevrolet 225.422
6. Helio Castroneves Penske DW12-Chevrolet 225.172
7. Josef Newgarden Fisher DW12-Honda 224.037
8. Tony Kanaan KV DW12-Chevrolet 224.751
9. EJ Viso KV DW12-Chevrolet 224.422
10. Rubens Barrichello KV DW12-Chevrolet 224.264
11. Alex Tagliani BHA DW12-Honda 224.000
12. Graham Rahal Ganassi DW12-Honda 223.959
13. Ana Beatriz Andretti DW12-Chevrolet 223.920
14. Charlie Kimball Ganassi DW12-Honda 223.868
15. Scott Dixon Ganassi DW12-Honda 223.684
16. Dario Franchitti Ganassi DW12-Honda 223.582
17. James Jakes Coyne DW12-Honda 223.482
18. JR Hildebrand Panther DW12-Chevrolet 223.422
19. Takuma Sato Rahal DW12-Honda 223.392
20. Townsend Bell Schmidt DW12-Honda 223.134
21. Justin Wilson Coyne DW12-Honda 222.929
22. Michel Jourdain Jr. Rahal DW12-Honda 222.893
23. Simon Pagenaud Schmidt DW12-Honda 222.891
24. Sebastian Saavedra Andretti DW12-Chevrolet 222.811
25. Sebastien Bourdais Dragon DW12-Chevrolet 223.760
26. Wade Cunningham Foyt DW12-Honda 223.258
27. Oriol Servia Panther/DRR DW12-Chevrolet 222.393
28. Ed Carpenter Carpenter DW12-Chevrolet 222.324
29. Mike Conway Foyt DW12-Honda 222.319
30. Katherine Legge Dragon DW12-Chevrolet 221.624
31. Bryan Clauson Fisher DW12-Honda 214.455
32. Simona de Silvestro HVM DW12-Lotus 214.393
33. Jean Alesi Fan Force DW12-Lotus 210.094
PRACTICE TOP 10
Pos Driver Team/Car Speed
1. Oriol Servia Panther/DRR DW12-Chevrolet 223.752
2. Sebastien Bourdais Dragon DW12-Chevrolet 223.479
3. Ed Carpenter Carpenter DW12-Chevrolet 222.886
4. Wade Cunningham Foyt DW12-Honda 222.794
5. Katherine Legge Dragon DW12-Chevrolet 222.156
6. Mike Conway Foyt DW12-Honda 221.423
7. Marco Andretti Andretti DW12-Chevrolet 221.140
8. Will Power Penske DW12-Chevrolet 220.640
9. Justin Wilson Coyne DW12-Honda 220.495
10. Helio Castroneves Penske DW12-Chevrolet 220.217
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