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Indianapolis 500

Speedway, IN
Race Review

It's the realization of a dream that began decades earlier and took him from Brazil to Europe to America. The sweat, sacrifice, physical labor and disappointment all cascaded to the floor of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Winner's Circle like the milk that ran down Tony Kanaan's firesuit during the effusive celebration.

Winning the 97th edition of the Indianapolis 500 Mile Race is certainly more than a big payday. It's the marquee accomplishment in a race car driver's career, the confluence of speed, skill and good fortune over 200 laps on the persnickety 2.5-mile oval.

It is "... marvelous," according to Kanaan, who earned the victory under caution when three-time champion Dario Franchitti's No. 10 Target Chip Ganassi Racing car made contract with the Turn 1 SAFER Barrier on a Lap 197 restart. Kanaan and rookie Carlos Munoz had overtaken race leader Ryan Hunter-Reay entering Turn 1 on the restart for a Lap 194 on-track incident involving Graham Rahal.

In a race that featured an astonishing 68 race-record lead changes among a race-record 14 drivers, Kanaan cruised to the checkered flag in front of more than 300,000 of his new-found closest Twitter friends and a global TV/radio audience. Kanaan, who completed the straight flush with the victory (he's finished first through fifth), wiped tears from his eyes as he guided the Chevrolet-powered No. 11 Hydroxycut KV Racing Technology/SH Racing car to the waiting Borg-Warner Trophy.

"That last lap was the longest of my life," said Kanaan, who started 12th and led 34 laps. "I got a little bit of luck today and this is for the fans. I was looking at the stands (on the cool-down lap) and it was unbelievable.

“I am speechless. I made it, and now I get to put my ugly face on that trophy. We were known for not winning (the race) and now we are known for winning. Everything was so smooth. (Race strategist) Jimmy (Vasser) was calm. I was calm. But out of the 11 times I have been here it was exactly the same, so when it was six laps to go and it went yellow I wasn't in the lead I said, 'This might be the day. Today might be the day.'

"I was in Ryan (Hunter-Reay's) position many times and then I knew I had to get the lead on the restart because it could be a yellow, which had happened to me plenty of times here. And it did. How life is funny, the yellow was my best friend."

Kanaan, 38, the 2004 IZOD IndyCar Series champion who was making his 201st consecutive Indy car start, said last week that the Speedway didn't "owe me anything." Some would argue that contention for the self-deprecating Indy car international ambassador. The historic facility at least owed the Kanaan, driving with torn tendons in his right hand, for his determination.

His will be the 100th face added to the Borg-Warner Trophy.

Three Andretti Autosport drivers -- Munoz, Hunter-Reay and Marco Andretti -- finished second through fourth. Justin Wilson advanced nine positions to finish fifth in the No. 18 Dale Coyne Racing car. Three-time Indy 500 winner Helio Castroneves was sixth and Team Penske teammate and first-time Indy 500 competitor AJ Allmendinger placed seventh..

"That's just the way it works out," said Hunter-Reay, the reigning IZOD IndyCar Series champion, of the restart following the third caution of the race. "I knew I was a sitting duck and I wasn't too bummed about it because I knew we had enough laps to get it going again and have a pass back and maybe I would be third on the last lap, which is where I wanted to be and it didn't work out that way..

"Big congratulations to Tony Kanaan, though. He has been there so many times, had bad luck and for whatever reason the race has alluded him. Great champion, certainly deserves it. But man am I disappointed."

So was Franchitti, who entered the race seeking his record-tying fourth victory but wasn't in contention.

"Sums up our day," the four-time series champion said of the crash. "Our car was never really good all day. In traffic we couldn’t make anything happen. I went into the first corner on the last restart and it just didn’t turn and then the hit. When I saw who was leading, it cheered me up a little bit.

"Just phenomenal that Tony won. We were never in contention but I’m just so happy he won. He’s a very, very deserving winner."

Andretti, who started third in the No. 25 RC Cola car and led 31 laps, wrested the points lead from Takuma Sato after five of 19 races. Andretti leads Sato, 168-157, heading into the inaugural Chevrolet Dual in Detroit presented by Quicken Loans on the Belle Isle circuit June 1-2. 

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Indianapolis 500
About the Track
Indianapolis 500 Track

Track Info

With four corners banked at 9 degrees, 12 minutes, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway drives more like a road course than an oval. But each of the corners is different, with weather influencing the car's characteristics. The straightaways are 5/8ths of a mile long -- time to catch your breath and dive into the next corner.

Past Track Winners

2013 Tony Kanaan
2012 Dario Franchitti
2011 Dan Wheldon
2010 Dario Franchitti
2009 Helio Castroneves
2008 Scott Dixon
2007 Dario Franchitti
2006 Sam Hornish, Jr.
2005 Dan Wheldon
2004 Buddy Rice
2003 Gil de Ferran
2002 Helio Castroneves
2001 Helio Castroneves
2000 Juan Pablo Montoya
1999 Kenny Brack
1998 Eddie Cheever, Jr.
1997 Arie Luyendyk
1996 Buddy Lazier
1995 Jacques Villeneuve
1994 Al Unser, Jr.
1993 Emerson Fittipaldi
1992 Al Unser, Jr.
1991 Rick Mears
1990 Arie Luyendyk
1989 Emerson Fittipaldi
1988 Rick Mears
1987 Al Unser
1986 Bobby Rahal
1985 Danny Sullivan
1984 Rick Mears
1983 Tom Sneva
1982 Gordon Johncock
1981 Bobby Unser
1980 Johnny Rutherford
1979 Rick Mears
1978 Al Unser
1977 A.J. Foyt
1976 Johnny Rutherford
1975 Bobby Unser
1974 Johnny Rutherford
1973 Gordon Johncock
1972 Mark Donohue
1971 Al Unser
1970 Al Unser
1969 Mario Andretti
1968 Bobby Unser
1967 A.J. Foyt
1966 Graham Hill
1965 Jim Clark
1964 A.J. Foyt
1963 Parnelli Jones
1962 Rodger Ward
1961 A.J. Foyt
1960 Jim Rathmann
1959 Rodger Ward
1958 Jimmy Bryan
1957 Sam Hanks
1956 Pat Flaherty
1955 Bob Sweikert
1954 Bill Vukovich
1953 Bill Vukovich
1952 Troy Ruttman
1951 Lee Wallard
1950 Johnnie Parsons
1949 Bill Holland
1948 Mauri Rose
1947 Mauri Rose
1946 George Robson
1945 NO RACE - WWII
1944 NO RACE - WWII
1943 NO RACE - WWII
1942 NO RACE - WWII
1941 Floyd Davis & Marui Rose
1940 Wilbur Shaw
1939 Wilber Shaw
1938 Floyd Roberts
1937 Wilber Shaw
1936 Louis Meyer
1935 Kelly Petillo
1934 Bill Cummings
1933 Louis Meyer
1932 Fred Frame
1931 Louis Schneider
1930 Billy Arnold
1929 Ray Keech
1928 Louis Meyer
1927 George Souders
1926 Frank Lockhart
1925 Peter DePaolo
1924 Lora Corum & Joe Boyer
1923 Tommy Milton
1922 Jimmy Murphy
1921 Tommy Milton
1920 Gaston Chevrolet
1919 Howdy Wilcox
1918 NO RACE - WWI
1917 NO RACE - WWI
1916 Dario Resta
1915 Ralph DePalma
1914 Rene Thomas
1913 Jules Goux
1912 Joe Dawson
1911 Ray Harroun
track videos
  • Kanaan talks about what winning Indy means
  • Highlights from exciting, record-setting race
  • Second through fifth dissect their '500' runs
  • Front-row qualifiers talk about the day's drama
Track Photos
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