Fernando Alonso Has Qualified Fifth For His Indy 500 Debut

Fernando Alonso Has Qualified Fifth For His Indy 500 Debut

The McLaren Formula 1 driver will start his first Indianapolis 500 from fifth on the grid, with Scott Dixon on pole position

Qualifying for the Indy 500 is no easy task, but Fernando Alonso’s only gone and secured a top five grid slot for his debut at the famous oval race.

The Spaniard easily made it through to the ‘Fast Nine’ session in the first segment of qualifying on Saturday, after finishing seventh quickest.

His best four-lap average on Saturday qualifying was a 230.034mph, and he got very close to the barrier in the process.

The two-time F1 champion has been quick all the way through practice and was the quickest of those in the Fast Nine during their segment of practice seven, ending it P6 overall earlier on Sunday.

Fernando Alonso Has Qualified Fifth For His Indy 500 Debut - Indycar

It wasn’t the smoothest of days for Alonso though, with his Andretti-run McLaren car having to have a Honda engine change (something he’s very familiar with now).

But he rallied back to put in a storming qualifying performance in the Fast Nine, with an average speed of 231.300mph. Quite a run in his first Indy 500 qualifying.

That was good enough for fifth on the grid, on the second row for the Indy 500 start next weekend.

Fernando Alonso Has Qualified Fifth For His Indy 500 Debut - Indycar

Chip Ganassi’s Dixon took pole with a stunning 232.164mph average, the fastest qualifying attempt at the Indy 500 since 1996.

He’ll share the front row with Ed Carpenter and last year’s Indy 500 winner Alexander Rossi, with ex-F1 driver and Super Aguri legend Takuma Sato fourth even with a tap with the barrier.

JR Hildebrand, Tony Kanaan, Marco Andretti and Will Power completed the Fast Nine and the drivers from 10th onwards also sorted out their order in an earlier qualifying session.

Ryan Hunter-Reay was quickest and will line up 10th, ahead of rookie Ed Jones and Oriol Servia. Former F1 star Max Chilton is 15th, while big names Juan Pablo Montoya, Helio Castroneves and Josef Newgarden are 18th, 19th and 22nd.