INDIANAPOLIS — Sting Ray Robb was shaking after his first ever Indianapolis 500 qualifying run on Saturday. He found out what makes this place so difficult on qualifying day. Laying it all out there while staring the grim reaper in the face for four laps. Unfortunately, despite a couple more attempts, Robb wasn’t fast enough to lock himself into next Sunday’s 107th Running of the Indianapolis 500 (11 a.m. ET, NBC, INDYCAR Radio Network).
He had to qualify his way into the field as one of four drivers in the Last Row Shootout. He was the second qualifier on Sunday afternoon. He was in a field with three Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing drivers. Basically, the odd man out.
However, the rookie didn’t flinch and put in four of the most grueling, soul searching, pulse pounding laps that the Idaho native had ever done before.
Lap 1: 230.064 mph
Lap 2: 229.561 mph
Lap 3: 229.514 mph
Lap 4: 229.058 mph
Average: 229.549 mph
That was second of two. Jack Harvey went out next and wasn’t better. Graham Rahal was next up and was only better than Harvey. As Harvey being the only one out now, time went by as the team tried to cool the car and get enough time to do some tweaks to try and get him in.
He went on a slow run to further cool the engine. Then, another attempt. It wasn’t good enough. He had to rush for one more shot. As a result, Robb was safe and knew that he would race in the Indy 500.
“We made it!” Robb screamed. “Top 33. We’re going racing next Sunday. Thanks to the crew, it’s all thanks to the crew. All the glory goes to God. I can’t thank everyone enough. The opportunities we’ve been given and the hard work we’ve put in, not just today or yesterday but the whole year so far. I don’t even know what to say at this point. It’s not the position we wanted to be in, but we got it done. It’s because everyone was focused, and we had faith all along the way. I’m super thankful to the Dale Coyne Racing with Rick Ware Racing crew. The #51 Biohaven Honda got the job done today and we’ll be starting 32nd for the race next Sunday.”