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Larson survives scare to secure Indy 500 place as Ericsson at risk

Day 1 of Indy 500 qualifying has ended with NASCAR ace Kyle Larson locked into the field and will go for pole as 2022 Marcus Ericsson is at risk on Day 2.

Kyle Larson
To news overview © IndyCar media

Kyle Larson is locked into the Indianapolis 500 and will fight for pole position on Day 2 of qualifying, as former Formula 1 driver Marcus Ericsson is at risk of being bumped. 

On an high-octane day 1 of qualifying for next weekend's race at IMS, NASCAR Cup champion Larson was forced to abort his guaranteed qualifying attempt due to a car problem, returning to the pits.

The #17 McLaren driver would later return to the 2.5-mile oval and record a four-lap average of 232.563mph to jump into sixth place and secure his place in the Fast 12 session tomorrow. 

Penske led a 1-2-3 at the head of the times with Will Power recording a best of 233.758 to top Day 1, ahead of Scott McLaughlin and Josef Newgarden in third, with speeds of 233.332mph and 233.293mph, respectively. 

Former Caterham and Sauber F1 racer, and 2022 Indy 500 winner, Ericsson endured a tricky day after problems through practice including a crash and placed outside the top 30 runners who are automatically locked into the race.

The #28 Andretti machine will be joined in the last chance saloon by rookie Nolan Siegel, Graham Rahal and the lone female entry in the 34 car field, Katherine Legge. 

Only 33 cars are allowed to take to the start of the 500, meaning one of Ericsson, Siegel, Rahal or Legge will be bumped from the field on Sunday. 

Elsewhere, Scott Dixon will not be challenging for pole as he will start 20th, with 2023 pole-winner Alex Palou missing out on a Fast 12 berth having not been permitted to make another run.

Palou was sat in Lane 2 hoping to make another run, but Legge and Rinus Veekay went into the priority Lane 1 to get out on track. Palou simply ran out of time to try and secure a Fast 12 slot, as Veekay, who suffered a big crash earlier in the day roared to a 232.419 average to capture 11th place and shuffle Colton Herta out of the Fast 12 at the death.

2024 Indianapolis 500 qualifying Day 1 results

Position Driver Team
1st Will Power Penske
2nd Scott McLaughlin Penske
3rd Josef Newgarden Penske
4th Alexander Rossi McLaren
5th Kyle Kirkwood Andretti
6th Kyle Larson McLaren
7th Felix Rosenqvist Meyer Shank Racing
8th Santino Ferrucci A.J Foyt Racing
9th Takuma Sato Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing
10th Pato O'Ward McLaren
11th Rinus Veekay Ed Carpenter Racing
12th Ryan Hunter-Reay Dreyer Reinbold Racing
Above locked into Fast 12
13th Colton Herta Andretti
14th Alex Palou Ganassi
15th Callum Ilott McLaren
16th Marcus Armstrong Ganassi
17th Ed Carpenter Ed Carpenter Racing
18th Kyffin Simpson Ganassi
19th Marco Andretti Andretti
20th Helio Castroneves Meyer Shank Racing
21st Scott Dixon Ganassi
22nd Augustin Canapino Juncos Hollinger
23rd Sting Ray Robb A.J Foyt Racing
24th Christian Rasmussen Ed Carpenter Racing
25th Tom Blomqvist Meyer Shank Racing
26th Romain Grosjean Juncos Hollinger Racing
27th Linus Lundqvist Ganassi
28th Christian Lundgaard Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing
29th Conor Daly Dreyer Reinbold
30th Pietro Fittipaldi Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing
Above locked into starting positions
- Marcus Ericsson Andretti
- Nolan Siegel Dale Coyne Racing
- Katherine Legge Dale Coyne Racing with Rick Ware Racing
- Graham Rahal Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing

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