F1 great Alonso to start 5th in Indy 500 debut

Just hours earlier, Dixon won the pole position for this Sunday's 101st running of the Indy 500.

"Proud of having the top two qualified Chevrolets", said Carpenter, who also owns JR Hildebrand's auto that qualified 6th.

The team achieved their best result of the season at the most recent Grand Prix in Spain as Alonso came home 12th, a miserable indictment of their form over the first five races.

"I didn't actually appreciate it until I retired.my job before that was to completely block all that out so to actually enjoy it was something incredible".

The Chip Ganassi Racing driver will be joined on the front row by Ed Carpenter, a two-time pole victor who finished second at 231.664. Two years ago, after getting his second, the New Zealander finished fifth because of an overheating vehicle. He'll start third after posting a 231.487. "Our whole nine-man team at Ganassi Racing did a fantastic job and it's extremely emotional". I'm not coming for a "week off" or to just have fun.

Fernando Alonso will start fifth in his first oval race next Sunday. "I'm used to changing engines before qualifying and the race".

On Sunday, James Davison was confirmed as Bourdais' replacement in the No. 18 Honda for the Indianapolis 500, a move which raised some eyebrows in the paddock, but does make sense from a continuity standpoint within the Coyne team.

Things started changing when he turned to two former F1 drivers and current teammates with Andretti Autosport - defending Indy victor Alexander Rossi and Japan's Takuma Sato - for advice. It's unclear if Davison will remain in the auto beyond next Sunday's race.

The two-time Formula 1 champion has been on the provisional pole for a short time and believes he could have made a potential pole run if not for a turbo-booster issue during his four-lap effort. "We got a good race auto and we'll try to get it as good as we can (Monday)". Juan Pablo Montoya will start 18th, Helio Castroneves 19th, Josef Newgarden 22nd and Simon Pagenaud 23rd.

And for the second straight year, the last vehicle on the grid will start without an official qualifying time. "But it means a lot more to say that you are an Indianapolis 500 victor". The French driver also fractured his right hip in a frightening crash Saturday.

  • Julie Sanders