CHEVROLET RACING IN THE VERIZON INDYCAR SERIES
102ND RUNNING OF THE INDIANAPOLIS 500
INDIANAPOLIS MOTOR SPEEDWAY
TEAM CHEVY NOTEBOOK
WEDNESDAY, MAY 23, 2018
INDIANAPOLIS (May 23, 2018) – Consistently fast over four qualifying laps earned Ed Carpenter the pole position for the 102nd Indianapolis 500 presented by PennGrade Motor Oil. His next objective is consistency over 200 laps on the 2.5-mile Indianapolis Motor Speedway oval May 27.
“I can’t wait for Sunday,” said the Indianapolis resident said. “We certainly have a car fast enough to run up front.”
Carpenter, driving the No. 20 Fuzzy’s Vodka Chevrolet for his namesake Verizon IndyCar Series (VICS) team, charged to his third Indy 500 pole in the past six years with the 2.2-liter V6, twin-turbocharged, direct injected Chevy engine providing the power. He is the 10th driver in 500 Mile Race history with three poles.
Based on their four-lap average speeds in qualifications May 20, Team Chevy drivers swept the front row and seven of the nine positions that constitute the first three rows of the 33-car starting field. All 16 Chevy Racing drivers entered qualified for the race that will be telecast live on ABC at noon ET.
New 2.2-liter twin-turbocharged, direct injected V6 Chevrolet engines will be installed in all Team Chevy entries for Carb Day practice May 25. The one-hour allotment will be the final on-track session before the race.
Carpenter, 37, has a best finish of fifth in 2008 in his 14 starts. He placed 10th in 2013 and was collected in an incident in ’14, relegating him to 27th place, in the previous pole-winning years.
“Hopefully, we’ll be able to close it this year. It’s always nice to start up front just because you can control things a little bit,” he said. “Having three poles it’s definitely an elite club I’m in, but the thing I really want to do is add my name to the list of winners of this race. That’s what we’re really here to do,”
Chevrolet has racked up nine Indy 500 victories dating to 1988 when Rick Mears won in a Team Penske entry from the pole. Oldsmobile, another General Motors brand, added five wins from 1997-2001.
The three Ed Carpenter Racing entries, which includes Danica Patrick in the No. 13 GoDaddy Chevrolet, and Spencer Pigot in the No. 21 Preferred Freezer Services Chevrolet, qualified in the top nine. Patrick, the highest-finishing female in Indy 500 history with a third-place showing in 2009, will be competing in the final race of her motorsports career.
“I’m super proud of the team. It’s one thing to build a fast car here. It’s a whole ‘nother to build three fast cars, especially one of them not being a full-time crew,” Carpenter said. “Really blessed to have great people in our organization.”
All four Team Penske entries – reigning Verizon IndyCar Series champion Josef Newgarden in the No. 1 Verizon Chevrolet, three-time Indy 500 winner Helio Castroneves in the No. 3 Pennzoil Chevrolet, Will Power in the No. 12 Verizon Chevrolet, and Simon Pagenaud driving the No. 22 Menards Chevrolet – supplement the first three rows.
Team Penske cars have won the 500 Mile Race 16 times dating to 1972.
Team Chevy driver Leist is recognized as fastest rookie
Matheus Leist won the Freedom 100 in 2017 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway during his lone season in Indy Lights, and now the 19-year-old Brazilian has his sights set on another trophy.
Leist, driver of the No. 4 ABC Supply Chevrolet for AJ Foyt Racing, qualified 11th for the 102nd Indianapolis 500 presented by PennGrade Motor Oil, which was tops among first-year competitors. He was honored May 22 as the Fastest Rookie at the annual luncheon presented by the American Dairy Association.
“The team did an awesome job and we’re looking good for the ‘500’ now,” said Leist, who recorded a four-lap average speed of 227.571 mph on the 2.5-mile oval. “Since our first day here, the car has been quick.”
Kyle Kaiser, the other Indy 500 first-year driver in the No. 32 NFP/Juncos Racing Chevrolet, qualified 17th with an average speed of 226.398 mph.
Fans can meet their favorite Team Chevy drivers
The Chevy Racing display adjacent to Pagoda Plaza at Indianapolis Motor Speedway will inspire fans with passenger cars and products, including the 2019 Corvette ZR1, Corvette Grand Sport, Silverado 2500 HD High Country, Colorado ZR2, Camaro Hot Wheels edition, Equinox Premier, and Malibu Premier. Additionally, there are racing simulators for fans to test their skills.
Fans can also meet and ask questions of their favorite Team Chevy drivers Friday and Saturday:
Friday – 12:45 p.m. Ed Carpenter Racing (Danica Patrick, Ed Carpenter, Spencer Pigot). 1 p.m. Team Penske (Josef Newgarden, Helio Castroneves, Will Power, Simon Pagenaud). 1:15 p.m. Harding Racing (Gabby Chaves, two-time Indy 500 winner Al Unser Jr.). 1:30 Carlin (Charlie Kimball, Max Chilton). 2 p.m. Juncos Racing (Kyle Kaiser). 2:15 p.m. Foyt with Byrd/Hollinger/Belardi (James Davison). 2:45 p.m. Dreyer & Reinbold Racing (Sage Karam, JR Hildebrand).
Saturday – 10 a.m. AJ Foyt Racing (Matheus Leist, Tony Kanaan).