ABEL Motorsports Defies Odds, Qualifies for Indy 500 On First Day
RC Enerson Set For First Indy 500 Start
(May 20, 2023) SPEEDWAY, In- FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
First-time Indy 500 entrant ABEL Motorsports of Louisville, KY, and rookie 500 driver RC Enerson of New Port Richey, FL combined today to beat long odds and qualify for their first Indy 500 start next Sunday, May 28.
ABEL Motorsports, with its race shop in Speedway, Indiana, near the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, is making its first foray into NTT INDYCAR Series competition by competing in the 107th Indianapolis 500 presented by Gainbridge. Enerson will make his 6th career INDYCAR start in this year’s 500.
Enerson went out 16th in the qualifying order in Saturday’s opening round of 500 time trials. His four-lap average speed of 231.129 MPH earned RC and the ABEL squad 29thstarting spot in this year’s 500. But there was much more to the story than the four strong laps Enerson posted midday Saturday. That’s due to the unique qualifying format for the 500 when more than 33 cars are entered. The top 30 cars are locked into the starting lineup on day 1 of qualifying with the remaining 4 cars this year set to battle it out for the last 3 starting spots on Sunday afternoon.
With Saturday’s success, the ABEL team and RC Enerson are automatically in the race and can watch the final row shootout from a comfortable perch.
“It’s a big stress reliever, that’s for sure. It went right down to the wire” commented Enerson.
“I think we had something left in the tank if we’d had to go back out, but it’s super awesome to be in the show. I’m so excited for this team. They’ve worked extremely hard for the last few months to put this car together and in the 500. Now we can concentrate Monday on getting the 50 car right for the race, and we can look forward to Carb Day Friday. I’ll definitely be celebrating tonight!”
Team Principal Bill Abel was emotional at seeing a dream fulfilled today. “I’m so proud of our guys. We have had so much help from so many in the paddock. It’s encouraging and gratifying to have that support and to have the team we’ve been able to assemble. I hadn’t even let myself get to the point of believing we had a shot to make the race. And now we have. It’s just amazing. The support we’ve gotten from Chevrolet has been invaluable. They’ve believed in us and we couldn’t have done this without their trust in what we wanted to do. They’ve provided so much support, it’s been awesome.”
Team Manager John Brunner was relieved and exhilarated knowing his car would be in the field for the 500. “I’ve been knocking on wood all week, because this car we’ve prepared has not had a single issue. This thing hadn’t even turned a wheel at all until practice Wednesday. It’s crazy. I’ve been here with a lot of teams, and you always have problems.
“But not this team We have some of the very best people in the sport on our team, and we’ve added some guys with tremendous credentials and experience to the group for the 500. I’m surprised we qualified on Day 1, but I’m not shocked. These guys have built a great car and we’ll be ready for next Sunday.”
This Sunday meanwhile will be a well-earned break for ABEL Motorsports and RC Enerson. The team will be ready to roll Monday, May 22, when pre-500 practice opens at 1pm. Monday’s session will run until 3pm at the Speedway.