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Owners still split on guaranteeing Indy 500 spots

INDIANAPOLIS -- Bobby Rahal remembers watching the start of the Indianapolis 500 from a suite with his sponsors after he failed to make the 1993 field.

He was bitter to miss "The Greatest Spectacle in Racing" but understood the sanctity of only the fastest 33 racing at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

"As a driver, I'll never forget sitting up in our suite, watching the pace lap, all our sponsors there, [thinking] 'I belong here, not up there,'" Rahal said Friday. "It was an emotional time. You make the best of it and go on."

Rahal falls firmly on the side of tradition in that 33 drivers qualify on pure speed for the Indy 500.