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Indy 500: Iconic motorsport race underway after extreme weather delays




CNN

Indy 500, one of the finest and Upcoming events From the motorsport calendar, it started four hours late on the Sunday afternoon after that Severe weather Organizers temporarily halted pre-race celebrations, evacuating fans from the grandstands and waiting for rain to fall and dry the track.

The race was initially scheduled to start at 12:45 PM ET, but race organizers announced that the start was delayed “due to the proximity of lightning.” After the rain stopped and track drying efforts were completed, the race finally got underway around 4:45 p.m

This is the 108th running of the Indy 500, known as “The Greatest Spectacle in Racing.” As part of the IndyCar Series, a talented field of 33 drivers will take on 200 laps and 500 miles around the oval at Indianapolis Motor Speedway in the ultimate test of speed and endurance.

For drivers, this is the big thing. A chance to write your name in the history books, and a chance to participate in a special tradition – kissing the bricks at the start/finish line and celebrating with a bottle of milk after winning the race.

“It’s the biggest sporting event in the world, isn’t it?” British driver Catherine Legge told CNN Sport’s Don Riddle before last year’s race. “The whole place has this feeling about it, this character it takes on and when it’s full of fans it’s the most amazing feeling, almost like it has a pulse.”

The highway – known as “The Brickyard” because the path was originally paved with brick rather than asphalt – has a unique aura.

“Indianapolis is about energy.” said 2023 winner Josef Newgarden He told NBC. “You talk to anyone who has been to the Indy 500 or knows what it’s like — it’s an energy that’s not replicated anywhere else in the world.”

Mark J. Reblas/USA Today Sports/Reuters

Newgarden douses himself with milk after winning the Indy 500 in 2023.

The Indy 500 is broadcast live on NBC and the streaming service Peacock.

International viewers will also be able to follow the action, and a full list of broadcasters is available here. Those seeking to watch the race in countries that do not have access to IndyCar’s broadcast contracts have the option of tuning in on INDYCAR LIVE – the series’ subscription streaming service.

The race is not typically broadcast in central Indiana because of a television blackout meant to encourage residents to buy tickets and head to the track. However, the power outage was lifted Sunday afternoon due to the storm, according to ABC News Share on X track administrators.

The Indy 500 regularly shares a date with the famous Monaco Grand Prix, known as the “crown jewel” of the Formula One calendar. Earlier Sunday, a hometown hero Charles Leclerc won the race On the streets of Monte Carlo for the first time.

For only the second time in the history of the race, one team was able to shut down the entire front row.

Team Penske’s Scott McLaughlin took pole position, setting the fastest four-lap average pole speed in Indy 500 history at 234.220 mph.

Australian driver and 2018 ‘500 race winner Will Power followed with an average of 233.917 mph while two-time IndyCar champion Newgarden qualified third as the Team Penske drivers completed the front row sweep.

Team Penske was also the first team to accomplish this feat, doing so in 1988, and holds the record for most Indy 500 poles with 19. The team is owned and headed by Robert Penske, who also owns the Indianapolis Motor Speedway and the IndyCar Series. Itself.

It was McLaughlin’s first 500 pole, after achieving a best qualifying position of 14th last year.

Daron Cummings/AP

McLaughlin celebrates after taking first place.

“Welcome to the party,” said the New Zealander, according to the race’s official website. “The Pennzoil Chevy was unreal. There’s a lot of pride in being able to do this. I work hard. Indy wasn’t nice to me, and a lot of it was my doing. I need to work on things. This is the first step.” Thirsty Three, baby , We are coming.”

Chevrolet drivers qualified into the top eight positions in a field of 33 cars.

Newgarden aims to be just that Sixth driver to win consecutive races in Indianapolis and the first since Hélio Castroneves (who qualified 20th for this year’s race) in 2002.

NASCAR Cup points leader Kyle Larson attempts to drive the Indy 500 and Coca-Cola 600 on the same day. Despite the rain delay, Larson was still on the track in Indianapolis as the race got underway so he wouldn’t be able to run every lap of the NASCAR race.

The American makes his IndyCar debut this weekend. Entered as an Arrow McLaren driver, he qualified an impressive fifth and has a chance to win the 500 as a rookie.

After driving in the Indy 500, Larson will head to Charlotte Motor Speedway in North Carolina in an attempt to finish two major motorsport races on the same day, although he will have to take over from another driver who will replace him at the start of the 600. The flag is scheduled to be raised Green for the NASCAR race at 6 p.m. ET.

Christopher Leduc/Sportswire Icon/AP

Larson is an experienced NASCAR driver but new to IndyCar.

Larson, the 2021 NASCAR Cup Series champion, was trying to become Fifth driver to start both races. John Andretti was the first to do so in 1994, with Robbie Gordon and Tony Stewart later winning the double on five and two occasions respectively. It was most recently attempted by Kurt Busch in 2014.

“The Double” is considered one of the most difficult challenges in motorsport due to the mental and physical toll of driving 1,100 miles in one day, overcoming the differences between open-wheel and stock cars and the grueling travel schedule.

“I don’t want to just be referred to as the greatest NASCAR driver of all time or the greatest race car driver of all time, I want to be known as someone who can get into all different types of cars and be great at what they do.” “I do,” Larson said in 2021, per NASCAR.

One of only four drivers to have won the Indy 500 four times, Castroneves is aiming to make history on Sunday when he lines up at the Brickyard for the 24th time.

If the Brazilian wins on Sunday, he will stand alone as the only person to have won the race on five occasions – although it will be an uphill task starting in the seventh row.

Castroneves, 49, is aiming to become the oldest 500 winner ever and has no plans to hit the brakes anytime soon.

Michael Conroy/AP

Castroneves is already a legendary figure in Indianapolis.

“(Racing at 50) has always been a goal of mine, but I don’t want to just do that.” He told IndyStar. “I feel like we can still be very competitive, and not just to win, but to make people go crazy here, and that’s what I want to do.

“Right now, I want to get on with it, because this is the best I know how. I’m sure this will change, but I don’t think it will in the near future.





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