Scott Dixon is fast - really fast. When he took the track on Sunday afternoon, however, he couldn't have known that he was going to be faster than any man who came before him in the past two decades. Nevertheless, that's what he was as he led a blazing qualifying run to earn the Pole position for the Indianapolis 500, one of the most famous events in the world of auto racing, set to drop the green flag a week from today.

Fastest pole lap in memory

Dixon set modern history in several ways during Indianapolis 500 qualifying. First, the New Zealand native had the fastest single qualifying lap since 1996. His first lap was clocked at 232.595 MPH, the fastest since Arie Luyendyk set a track record of 237.498 MPH. His four-lap average (which earned him the pole) clocked in at 232.164 MPH, which was also the fastest since Luyendyk averaged 236.986 MPH around the track.

Starting next to the pole position in the front row will be Ed Carpenter, who averaged 231.664 MPH in his run. They will also be joined in the front row by Alexander Rossi, who won the 100th Indianapolis 500 last year. It was the 26th time in his career that Dixon - who appeared giddy upon seeing his speeds - earned the right to start in the first position on the IndyCar circuit. Now, he will have to validate that position by winning the race for just the second time in his career.

Handicapping the Indianapolis 500

Dixon has been in the pole position twice before for this race. In 2008, he took his start all the way to the winner's circle. He couldn't do the same in 2015, however, finishing fourth on the leaderboard. Nevertheless, his history and pedigree suggest that he should be the early favorite to win this year's Indianapolis 500.

Rossi has to be seen as a threat on the front row, considering the fact that he won the race last year.

Carpenter also typically has a fast car for this race. Takuma Sato could be a dark horse threat. He drove extremely aggressively during his qualifying run, flying up near the walls and earning the fourth position on the starting grid. Meanwhile, Tony Kanaan, a Chip Ganassi teammate of Dixon's and consistent IndyCar threat, will be starting at seventh. Everyone will be in pursuit of the pole position, however, as Scott Dixon looks to win the Indianapolis 500 for the second time in his career and cement his historical legacy.

The race will take place next Sunday afternoon and all 500 laps will air live on ABC.

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