22-year-old rookie, Matt Brabham has qualified the #61 PIRTEK Team Murray Chevrolet for the 100th running of the Indianapolis 500.
Brabham completed his only qualifying run today early in the first round. His four flawless laps were all in the 226mph (363.712kph) bracket, with the four lap average being 226.389mph (364.338kph).
The first lap was 226.640mph, which was followed up by laps of 226.440mph, 226.260mph and 226.217mph.
The team elected to save from another run this afternoon. Overall, this placed Matt xxxxth in the order.
Brabham’s four lap qualifying attack was his first full throttle run since yesterday and the team have worked hard with him and the car to get both comfortable and meet the primary objective, which was to get through the four laps and make the show.
Tomorrow, he will have to re-qualify with one four lap session against the clock that will set the order for the Indianapolis 500 next Sunday, May 29.
The cars that ended today in the top nine are guaranteed a starting position on the first three rows, whilst PIRTEK Team Murray will be in the battle for positions 10 to 33.
To make the 100th Indianapolis 500 is the culmination of 10 months work to bring together the PIRTEK Team Murray program and for team owner, Brett Murray the emotional realization of a lifelong dream to have a race car in the Indianapolis 500.
The Indianapolis based Brabham will become the third generation Brabham to start the Indianapolis 500 after his Grandfather, Sir Jack Brabham started four times, debuting in 1961 and his father Geoff made 10 starts, debuting in 1983. It will be the 15th time a Brabham has started the greatest race in the world.
The US arm of international fluid transfer solutions company, PIRTEK has backed PIRTEK Team Murray. The team has also welcomed this week the CK Crew – the PIRTEK Team Murray entry in the Tag Heuer Pit Stop Challenge made up of military veterans and first responders – which has been established in assocation with Warner Bros. Home Entertainment and the Chris Kyle Frog Foundation.
MATT BRABHAM – DRIVER #61 PIRTEK TEAM MURRAY CHEVROLET:
“It is a wonderful feeling to say that I’ve been able to qualify for the race – it is one of those special moments in life. We’re here and I’ve made it and I’m going to be racing in the Indianapolis 500. How cool is that?
“I was definitely nervous before going out there, I wanted to get my four laps in very cleanly and not mess it up and ensure that PIRTEK Team Murray made the race. Once I got in the car and got through the first lap, I felt more comfortable heading into the second lap and it came together from there, I got four solid laps in.
“It’s a pretty special thing to be the third generation of Brabham to have a start in this race and to be only the third family to do that in 100 years is something that I’m very honored to be in that situation and to be part of such a great family that is the Brabhams and this place is just steeped in history.
“Over the time, we’ve been reminiscing on the history of the race but also looking forward – being a rookie in the race is awesome.
“I’ve qualified for the Indianapolis 500.
BRETT “CRUSHER” MURRAY – TEAM OWNER PIRTEK TEAM MURRAY:
“In January this year three people split a $1.6 billion lottery, including John Robinson who was a warehouse supervisor from Tennessee.
“That was a pretty good day for John, but I can tell you, he does not have enough cash to buy my entry in next week’s 100th Indy 500.
“I have some space if he wants to be a sponsor, but to have my family, friends and all our stakeholders on the grid with our own car for the 100th Indianapolis 500 is going to be surreal.
“The energy, hours and frustrations have been enormous, but nothing we were not expecting or that we were scared of.
“PIRTEK and the Duncan family have been amazing partners and have really put their arms around the whole Dare to Dream program.
“It has been enormously satisfying to provide the opportunities we have for the Chris Kyle Frog Foundation and to build a successful initiative around the CK Crew and the Tag Heuer Pit Crew Challenge.
“Matt Brabham has justified our decision to start this journey by doing an amazing job in the car, which has had the paddock talking for the entire month of May.
“The kid is the ‘Real Deal’ and I can only hope that next Sunday’s race is the springboard for a rich and successful career.
“We are about to head into another amazing week for the Brabham and Murray families and we are tremendously grateful to everyone who has helped make this a reality and those who have enjoyed the ride.”