INDIANAPOLIS – Lets face it, with the lack of cars available and everyone gearing up towards the new 2018 car, it doesn’t look like we’re going to get more than 33 cars for next months’ 101st Running of the Indianapolis 500. That’s okay though, because I do think we get to 33 cars, and those 33 drivers may make this year the deepest Indy 500 field ever.
This year’s field will rival any field in the past. The star power is back and it’s as good as ever.
Don’t believe me? How’s this for a fact, this year’s Indy 500 field will feature world champions in Juan Pablo Montoya and Fernando Alonso. Montoya, is a two-time Indy 500 champion too and both have just one goal in mind for May – win.
What about Scott Dixon? He’s won Indy once (2008) and has 40 career Verizon IndyCar Series victories. That ranks fourth all-time. He’s also a four-time IndyCar champion too. Then there’s Tony Kanaan, Dixon’s Ganassi teammate who won the 2013 Indy 500, has a series championship himself and 17 career victories.
What about Helio Castroneves? He’s a three-time Indy 500 champion and has 29 career IndyCar victories. His Penske teammate of Will Power also has 29 career IndyCar victories as the duo are tied for 11th with Rick Mears on the all-time IndyCar wins list. Their teammate of Simon Pagenaud is the defending series champion and has nine victories himself. A fifth Penske driver in Josef Newgarden is a rising star and bound to win the ‘500 soon.
There’s Sebsatien Bourdais with 36 career victories, who gives us four drivers ranked in the top 11 of career IndyCar victories. Not to mention Alexander Rossi, you know, the guy who won the 100th running last year, Ryan Hunter-Reay who won in 2014 and boasts 16 career victories himself. Marco Andretti is always a threat. Conor Daly and Carlos Munoz will be strong too.
Don’t forget about James Hinchcliffe either.
I could go on and on.
Moral of the story is, this year’s race will feature seven former ‘500 winners, two former Formula One champions, eight drivers who have either raced in F1 or was on an F1 path and several rising stars that have worked the Mazda Road to Indy path.
This year’s field will feature star power, a youth movement and a world class feel.
We may only have 33 cars going for 33 spots next month, but those 33 drivers will rival any field in the 101 year history of this event.