Monday, May 31, 2010

INDY 500: Franchitti wins Indy 500 for the second time

INDIANAPOLIS, IN - Dario Franchitti won his second Indianapolis 500 Mile Race under caution. No matter, the milk still tasted just as good. Franchitti, who led 155 of the 200 laps, became the 19th multi-time winner of "The Greatest Spectacle In Racing" and his boss, Chip Ganassi, the first owner to win Indy and NASCAR's Daytona 500 in the same year.

Dan Wheldon, the 2005 winner who closed furiously as Franchitti slowed to save fuel in the final laps, was second for the second straight year, with Marco Andretti, third. Alex Lloyd was fourth, followed by Scott Dixon in fifth.

Franchitti, low on fuel, was heading to the Yard of Bricks when the Ryan Hunter-Reay and Mike Conway made contact between Turns 3 and 4. Conway's car went airborne and made contact with the catch fence. Conway, who waved to the crowd as he was being taken off the track, was airlifted to Methodist Hospital with leg injuries.

Polesitter Helio Castroneves saw his quest for a record-tying fourth Indy victory come to an end with an uncharacteristic mistake — stalling while leaving the pits on the 146th lap. It left him in need of a yellow-flag miracle at the end that never came, and he finished ninth after one last pit stop on the 193rd lap.



CHIP GANASSI (Owner, Target Chip Ganassi Racing): (About significance of being first owner to win Daytona 500 and Indianapolis 500 in the same year): "I'll think about that later. I want to congratulate Dario. I want to thank everybody who put together this team. It was a little dicey there at the end, on fuel at the end. He saved fuel when he had to."

DARIO FRANCHITTI (Winner, 2010 Indianapolis 500): "I was just thinking. This tastes just as good second time. Up until 10 laps to go, I was pretty relaxed. Then all hell broke loose with fuel savings and all. I just needed to know what the other guys were doing. If they were saving more than me, they were doing something special here. This means so much. To come back after going away for a year, win a championship and win the Indy 500. Thank you. Thank you to everyone on Team Target."


Two male spectators were treated for minor injuries at Clarian Emergency Medical Center and released after being struck by debris during the crash between Mike Conway and Ryan Hunter-Reay on the final lap of the race. The spectators were seated in the North Vista, East Section 47, Rows A and G.

One spectator received stitches for a cut in the forehead. Another spectator suffered a head laceration that required no stitches.



•Dario Franchitti became the 17th driver with at least two Indianapolis 500 victories.

•Dario Franchitti became the first driver from Scotland to win the Indianapolis 500 more than once. Jim Clark won in 1965.

•Chip Ganassi became the first team owner to win the Indianapolis 500 and Daytona 500 in the same year. Dario Franchitti won the Indianapolis 500 today; Ganassi driver Jamie McMurray won the Daytona 500 in February. Roger Penske is the only other owner to win the Indianapolis 500 and Daytona 500, winning 15 times at Indianapolis and in 2008 at Daytona with Ryan Newman driving.

•Panther Racing has finished runner-up in the Indianapolis 500 for three consecutive years, with Vitor Meira in 2008 and Dan Wheldon in 2009 and 2010.

•Dario Franchitti earned his first Indianapolis 500 victory in 2007 with Andretti Green Racing, now Andretti Autosport. He won today for Target Chip Ganassi Racing. The last driver to earn his second Indy 500 victory with a different team than his first was Arie Luyendyk. He won in 1990 for Shierson Racing and earned his second victory in 1997 for Treadway Racing.

•Dario Franchitti was the top lap leader of the race with 155 laps led. This is the third consecutive year that a Target Chip Ganassi Racing car has led the most race laps. Scott Dixon led 115 laps when he won from the pole position in 2008, and Dixon also was the top lap leader in 2009 when he finished sixth after leading 73 laps.

•The 155 laps led by race winner Dario Franchitti is the ninth-highest total for an Indianapolis 500 winner. It is the most laps led by an Indianapolis 500 driver since Juan Pablo Montoya led 167 laps en route to victory in 2000.

•Dario Franchitti climbed to 21st place on the all-time Indianapolis 500 lap leader list, with 255 laps, after leading 155 laps today. He entered the race 59th on the all-time lap leader list.

•The 2010 Indianapolis 500 race marked the fourth victory for a car owned or co-owned by Chip Ganassi. He was the sole owner of the winning entries in 2000 (Juan Pablo Montoya), 2008 (Scott Dixon) and Dario Franchitti (2010). Ganassi was co-owner with U.E. "Pat" Patrick in 1989 (Emerson Fittipaldi). The only car owners with more Indianapolis 500 victories are Roger Penske (15) and Lou Moore (five).

•This was the first time car number 10 won the Indianapolis 500.

•Dario Franchitti started from the third position. This is the 11th time that the winning car has started from that position. Dario Franchitti's other win, in 2007, also came from the third starting position.

•Alex Lloyd and Tony Kanaan each advanced 22 positions, the most of any finisher. Lloyd finished fourth after starting 26th. Kanaan finished 11th after starting 33rd.

•The highest finisher for car owner Roger Penske's three entries was eighth place (Will Power). His other two drivers finished ninth (Helio Castroneves) and 24th (Ryan Briscoe). The last time Team Penske's best finisher at Indianapolis was lower was in 2005, when Castroneves finished ninth.

•There were three first time Indianapolis 500 lap leaders in today's race: Will Power, Mike Conway, and Justin Wilson.

•Danica Patrick and Sarah Fisher overtook Lyn St. James for most laps completed in an Indianapolis 500 career by a female driver. Patrick completed 200 laps in the 2010 event, which raised her Indianapolis 500 career total to 1,137 laps completed. Fisher completed 125 laps in the 2010 race to raise her Indianapolis 500 career total to 1,057 laps completed. St. James completed 947 laps in her seven-year career in the Indianapolis 500.

•Danica Patrick finished sixth in the 2010 Indianapolis 500. This is Patrick's fifth top-10 finish in six career Indianapolis 500 starts.


Rahal Letterman Racing co-owners Bobby Rahal and David Letterman talked about the performance of the team's driver, Graham Rahal, who finished 12th.

BOBBY RAHAL: "I thought Graham did a hell of a job today. A bogus penalty really hurt us. I don't think Graham did anything that others drivers weren't doing, but we got a penalty. To lead Dario like he did for so long really showed how strong the car could be. I think he really got everything he could out of the car."

DAVID LETTERMAN: "What a day for the kid. You can't ask for anything else. I've never seen our team have a better drive here. Even the year we won the race (2004, with Buddy Rice), I thought the kid drove a better race today. Graham made a heroic effort, and I am really, really proud to be a part of this team."


The 2010 IZOD IndyCar Series season continues June 5 with the Firestone 550K at Texas Motor Speedway. The race will be telecast live in High Definition at 8 p.m. (ET) by VERSUS. The race will air live on the IMS Radio Network, XM channel 145 and Sirius channel 211. The race also will be carried on The 2010 Firestone Indy Lights season continues with the Iowa 100 on June 19 at the Iowa Speedway.

Media Contact: Amy Konrath, Indy Racing League, (317) 492-6453, // World Wide Web:

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