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Scott Dixon wins pole for Indianapolis 500 as Jimmie Johnson will start 12th

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Scott Dixon will go for his second Indianapolis 500 from the pole.

Dixon posted the fastest laps in the final round of qualifying on Sunday to beat out teammate and defending IndyCar Series champion Alex Palou to start first. Dixon posted an incredible average of 234.046 mph after the first two of his four qualifying laps were over 234 mph.

Though there have been quicker qualifying runs in Indy 500 history, Dixon's run of over 234 mph is the fastest pole speed ever.

Dixon started first when he won the 2008 Indianapolis 500 and led 115 of the race’s 200 laps. He’s also started from the pole in 2015, 2017, and 2021, but his best finish in any of those races is fourth. Dixon finished 17th a year ago and was 32nd in 2017 after his car launched into the air off a lapped car and landed on top of the inside wall in one of the most frightening crashes you’ll ever see.

The 41-year-old has established himself as the best driver in modern IndyCar history with six series titles and 50 career wins. A second Indy 500 win will simply further Dixon’s status as an American open-wheel legend.

Each of the 33 drivers entered in the field made qualifying attempts on Saturday with the exception of Stefan Wilson. The top 12 drivers from Saturday’s rain-delayed session advanced to Sunday’s qualifying session. The top six from those 12 then made another run to set the first two rows of the race.

The six cars in the final group were all from two teams. Ed Carpenter Racing had two cars in the group while the other four were from Chip Ganassi Racing.

Seven-time NASCAR Cup Series champion Jimmie Johnson is making his Indy 500 debut for CGR and made the final 12. He will start 12th after he had an impressive save during his qualifying attempt.

Johnson has been much better in his limited oval experience in IndyCar than he has at road courses. Johnson finished sixth in his first IndyCar oval start at Texas earlier this year and has finished no better than 17th in any of his 16 road and street car starts in the series.

No drivers failed to qualify for next weekend’s race as Wilson was the 33rd and final entry into the race. The Indy 500 hasn’t had fewer than 33 cars start the race since 1928.

Scott Dixon, of New Zealand, drives through the first turn during qualifications for the Indianapolis 500 auto race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis, Saturday, May 21, 2022. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy)
Scott Dixon, of New Zealand, drives through the first turn during qualifications for the Indianapolis 500 auto race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis, Saturday, May 21, 2022. (AP Photo/Michael Conroy)

2022 Indianapolis 500 starting lineup

1. Scott Dixon

2. Alex Palos

3. Rinus VeeKay

4. Ed Carpenter

5. Marcus Ericsson

6. Tony Kanaan

7. Pato O’Ward

8. Felix Rosenqvist

9. Romain Grosjean

10. Takuma Sato

11. Will Power

12. Jimmie Johnson

13. David Malukas

14. Josef Newgarden

15. Santino Ferrucci

16. Simon Pagenaud

17. JR Hildebrand

18. Conor Daly

19. Callum Ilott

20. Alexander Rossi

21. Graham Rahal

22. Sage Karam

23. Marco Andretti

24. Devlin DeFrancesco

25. Colton Herta

26. Scott McLaughlin

27. Helio Castroneves

28. Kyle Kirkwood

29. Dalton Kellett

30. Juan Pablo Montoya

31. Christian Lundgaard

32. Jack Harvey

33. Stefan Wilson