King makes the starting grid for Sunday’s Indianapolis 500

Jordan King is set to make his Indy 500 debut on Sunday. Picture: RLLR
Jordan King is set to make his Indy 500 debut on Sunday. Picture: RLLR

Jordan King has qualified for the Indianapolis 500 after his average speed of 227.502mph secured 26th place on the grid for the 103rd running of the event.

The Indy 500 rookie, who had only competed in one oval pre-season test at the Phoenix International Raceway before this week, will start Sunday’s race from the ninth row on the grid.

With the qualifying result determined by the average lap speed over four laps, the Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing contender did more than enough to avoid Sunday’s slowest six bump day session.

The Harbury driver’s first run of four was aborted after the previous car’s run had left supposed debris on the track.

With the pressure on, King was forced to wait in the pit lane while a track inspection was carried out.

And, with the track temperature and the pressure in the car rising, he instantly put himself in the top-30 with his first qualifying run.

He headed out again for a second run when he fell outside of the guaranteed spots and forced his way back into the top 30.

This continued throughout the day until King clocked an average four-lap speed of 227.502mph, with just seven-tenths separating his fastest and slowest speed, on his fourth and final outing.

“We were chased by a margin of the whole field separated by thousands of a second and that was a good run,” said King.

“It was pretty consistent. I think my drop off was only half a mile an hour which is probably the best out there.

“The first run was so mismatched with a yellow flag and then it was a bit of a fuffle to get ourselves back out, actually just go again and keep our cool.

“The team did a great job staying relaxed, getting the car ready and making those small adjustments.

“Now we’ve got ourselves some breathing room.”

The 2019 Indianapolis 500 will get underway at 5.45pm UK time on Sunday, with the action broadcast live on Sky Sports F1.