JOSEF NEWGARDEN TO START ON FRONT ROW OF 2016 INDIANAPOLIS 500
Narrowly Misses Out On Pole Position; Hildebrand, Carpenter To Start 15th and 20th, Respectively
(SPEEDWAY, Ind.) May 22, 2016 – Pole Day Notes
- Josef Newgarden will have the best view in the house for next Sunday’s 100th Running of the Indianapolis 500 as he will start in the middle of the front row. His 2nd place starting position is his best start in five attempts at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
- Today’s effort by Newgarden in his No. 21 Preferred Freezer Services Chevrolet will give Ed Carpenter Racing it’s 3rd front row start in the past four years. Team owner Ed Carpenter won the pole position in 2013 and 2014.
- Newgarden’s four-lap qualifying speed of 230.700 mph gave him the provisional pole until the final Fast Nine qualifier, James Hinchcliffe, recorded a four-lap average of 230.760 mph.
- J.R. Hildebrand will start from the outside of Row 5, position 15, in his sixth Indy 500.
- Carrying the familiar white and blue Preferred Freezer Services color scheme, Hildebrand piloted his No. 6 Chevy to a four-lap qualifying average of 227.876 mph.
- Carpenter will make his 13th career Indy 500 start on the inside of Row 7 and in position 20, qualifying his No. 20 Fuzzy’s Vodka car to a four-lap average of 227.226 mph.
- ECR has returned to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway with a driver lineup identical to that of 2015. The trio of drivers earned the nickname “Team America” last year when ECR was the only multi-car team with an all-American lineup in the Indianapolis 500. Hildebrand hails from Sausalito, Calif.; Newgarden is a native of Hendersonville, Tenn.; Carpenter, from Indianapolis, is a hometown favorite.
- The 100th Running of the Indianapolis 500 will be broadcast live on ABC, beginning at 11 a.m. ET on Sunday, May 29th.
JOSEF NEWGARDEN, NO. 21 PREFERRED FREEZER SERVICES CHEVROLET, QUALIFIED 2ND: “I got going up the gears; I went fifth, sixth on the front stretch and it was just on the limiter and with this headwind normally you downshift on the backstretch. I was just holding six on the limiter all the way through turn two. I was like ‘what is going on, this thing’s super quick!’ It’s the quickest the car’s been all month. It was a good time to peak. This is the pinnacle, this is the greatest event that you can be a part of in racing so it’s just cool to be here. I was so happy to see our speed on that first lap and I got really hopeful that it might be enough to hang on but it wasn’t. I’m happy for James (Hinchcliffe). It was a great run by them and Schmidt Peterson Motorsports has done a fantastic job. We lost the battle today but I’m hoping we can win next weekend.”
JR HILDEBRAND, NO. 6 PREFERRED FREEZER SERVICES CHEVROLET, QUALIFIED 15TH: “We went out when the conditions were pretty lousy. We knew that ahead of time so we wanted to make sure that we could get four good laps in and not be in a position where we’re fast but having a tricky time putting laps together. You saw a lot of guys do that this morning and in qualifying today. We ended up 15th, which I think we’re pretty pleased with. At this point it’s really about the race. Anywhere that we were going to qualify today within reason was going to put us in a position to win next Sunday. Now we use what time we have left on track to get dialed in in race trim.”
ED CARPENTER, NO. 20 FUZZY’S ULTRA PREMIUM VODKA CHEVROLET, QUALIFIED 20TH: “I’ve got a great car. That’s as well of handling car as when I had the pole here. It just doesn’t want to go fast this week. We’ll hope for a little more speed next week but the handling is certainly there so I think we’ll have what it takes to get to the front in the race. We’ll have to pass more cars and be a little more aggressive than what I had anticipated earlier in the race.”