Karam, Hinchcliffe, Kaiser advance to Indy 500 from Last Row Shootout
INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – Sage Karam, James Hinchcliffe, and Kyle Kaiser were the fastest of the group of six competing for the final three spots in the Indianapolis 500 and will start on the last row in this year’s Greatest Spectacle in Racing.
“I never want to be in that bump situation again,” said an emotionally spent Karam, after securing his bid. “We didn’t have it yesterday, but I just knew, if we were better than the guys we needed to be better than today for four laps, we would do our job.”
“I’ve had more fun days, if I’m honest with you,” said Hinchcliffe. “Honestly, this is what makes Indy so special: It’s tough to get into this race.”
Kaiser was the last of the trio to secure his Indy 500 starting spot, bumping Fernando Alonso in the process.
“I was just doing what I’ve been doing,” said an elated Kaiser. “Once they said ‘You made it’, I heard the shouting on the radio, and I started bursting out into tears.”
Also bumped from the 500 field were a pair of Carlin Racing drivers: Patricio O’Ward and Max Chilton.
“I was more prepared than I’ve ever been,” reflected Chilton. “I was super up for it. I couldn’t have done any more, and I don’t think the team could have done any more.”
“We just have to work harder next time,” said O’Ward. “I’m appreciative of the boys of the Carlin Racing team, giving me their maximum and really working hard.”
The Indy 500 field is set, and it’s the closest in the race’s 103 year history, with just 1.8 seconds between P1 and P33.