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How it Works: 107th Indianapolis 500 Qualifying

SPEEDWAY, IN. — Qualifying for the 107th Indianapolis 500 kicks off Saturday morning at the hallowed Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

34 cars will vie for 33 spots in the 500. Right away Saturday, drivers who are first through 30th fastest will lock in.

On Saturday, all 34 drivers will lay down a qualifying attempt. During an attempt, a driver will run four laps. The average lap time determines where a driver qualifies.

  • Ex: If Driver A runs three 38-second lap times and a 42-second lap time, while Driver B runs three 39-second lap times and 38-second lap time, Driver B would qualify higher than Driver A since their average is better (38.75 secs. vs. 39 secs.)

After everyone gets at least one attempt, teams may doing another attempt or as many attempts as they choose. There are also two lanes they can choose from when they go out for an attempt:

  • Lane 1 – Priority lane, where a team must withdraw their time and post another time
  • Lane 2 – Teams that have already qualified can use this to go back out and improve their time. If they don’t improve, nothing changes

This goes from 11 a.m. to 5:50 p.m. ET Saturday (TV: Peacock all day; NBC from 2:30-4:30 p.m.). At the end of the day, positions 13-30 will be set.

On Sunday, from 2-3 p.m. ET, the top 12 drivers will each make an attempt to determine who makes the Firestone Fast Six and who starts 7th through 12th (TV: Peacock)

Then, a session from 4-5 p.m. ET (TV: NBC), will determine positions 31-33. This will also determine the one driver who will miss the 2023 Indianapolis 500.

Each driver will get at least one attempt but they can make multiple attempts until time runs out.

Drivers can also run an additional cool-down lap following each qualifying run to cool the engines and get in line for additional attempts. With 10 minutes left, drivers won’t be able to do that anymore.

Each driver’s most recent attempt will remain eligible for the starting lineup until the time is withdrawn or the session ends.

After this, the Firestone Fast Six will determine (TV: NBC) starting positions 1-6. Each driver will get one attempt in this session to go for the pole.

The qualifying order for Saturday is as follows. Click here to see practice results.

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