James Hinchcliffe wins pole for Indy 500 a year after near-fatal crash

James Hinchcliffe will lead the field to green for next Sunday's 100th running of the Indianapolis 500.

Scott R LePage

One year after almost losing his life in a crash at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indiana, James Hinchcliffe took pole position on Sunday for the 100th running of the Indianapolis 500.

The Canadian ran four lap average of 230.760 mph to take pole over Josef Newgarden and Ryan Hunter-Reay.

Hinchcliffe had almost lost his life in a crash during practice for the 2015 Indianapolis 500 on May 18 last year, which kept him out of the rest of the season. A piece of the suspension rod had broken into the cockpit upon contact with the wall and impaled Hinchcliffe’s leg, causing him to almost bleed to death. Qucik work by the medical teams at the scene helped save his life. Since his return to the Verizon IndyCar Series this year, Hinchcliffe has scored one top-five and three top-10 finishes.

Further back in the field, Juan Pablo Montoya got a second run after his first run was interrupted due to debris on track. However, having failed to qualify for the “Fast Nine,” he could only manage 17th. Alex Tagliani also hit drama when he spun out of turn four and made contact with the wall, but he was OK.

View all 33 cars for the Indianapolis 500 in photos

Unofficial qualifying results: