News & Multimedia

Scott Dixon
No. 5: Fastest Pole Sitter, Front Row in Indy 500 History

Note: The editorial staff at IMS.com is taking a look back at the 10 biggest moments of 2022 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway in this year-end series, with one installment appearing on the site per day in countdown fashion from Dec. 22-31.

It was fitting when the driver named ‘The Iceman” is the one that iced the field May 22 with the fastest pole run in the century-plus history of the Indianapolis 500.

Scott Dixon, the 2008 Indy 500 winner, delivered a four-lap average speed of 234.046 mph to capture his fifth pole – second consecutive – in “The Greatest Spectacle in Racing” and further his legend as one of the greatest ever.

The tension reached its peak as Dixon was the last driver in the Firestone Fast Six to take to the 2.5-mile oval. Proving to have every bit the mettle of a six-time NTT INDYCAR SERIES champion, the Kiwi wheeled his No. 9 PNC Bank Chip Ganassi Racing Honda to four crisp laps en route to claiming the NTT P1 Award, earning $100,000 as a result and now sitting one behind four-time “500” winner Rick Mears for most poles in event history.

“That’s what this place is about; it’s so amazing,” said Dixon. “It’s crazy. This PNC Bank No. 9 crew and Honda, they brought it today. Just so happy for everybody.”

Dixon’s run broke the all-time pole record speed of 233.718 set in 1996 by Scott Brayton. Arie Luyendyk set the all-time four-lap qualifying average speed record of 236.986 in 1996, but his run came on the second day of qualifications and wasn’t eligible for the pole.

Alex Palou, the 2021 NTT INDYCAR SERIES champion, qualified second at 233.499 mph in the No. 10 NTT DATA Chip Ganassi Racing Honda to give Chip Ganassi Racing its first 1-2 start in the Indianapolis 500 since 2008. Furthermore, CGR had four drivers battling for the top spot in the Firestone Fast Six, with all five of its challengers settling into the top 12.

“To get five of our cars into the fast 12 and four into the (Firestone Fast) Six, I hope Chip has a smile on his face," said Dixon. "That definitely deserves a smile.”

Rinus VeeKay took the last spot in the front row for the second consecutive year, qualifying third at 233.385 in the No. 21 Bitcoin Racing Team with BitNile Chevrolet fielded by Ed Carpenter Racing.

This is the fastest front row in Indy 500 history, with an average speed of 233.643 mph, breaking the record of 233.233 mph set in 1996.

Show More Show Less
Register for IMS News & Updates