Dario Franchitti. husband of Ashley Judd, has won the 91st Indianapolis 500, which ended after 166 laps due to rain. The race had resumed after a three-hour rain delay. Scott Dixon finished second, while two-time Indy 500 winner Helio Castroneves was third. Danika Patrick comes in 8th.
Dario Franchitti won a rain-shortened Indianapolis 500, becoming the first Scotsman since 1965 to win the biggest U.S. open-wheel auto race. Rain that caused a three- hour delay earlier in the day returned to end the race after 166 of 200 laps.
Franchitti, driving for Andretti Green Racing, stayed on the track after other cars pitted under a yellow flag in expectation the race would go the full distance. Franchitti’s teammate Marco Andretti crashed just before the rain started, prompting officials to call an early end to the 91st running of the Indy 500.
“We rolled the dice, we were lucky the first part of the race,” the 34-year-old Franchitti, who is married to actress Ashley Judd, told ABC television after the race. He’s the second Scotsman to win the race after Jim Clark, who won it in 1965.
Scott Dixon was second in the Target Ganassi Racing car. Pole-sitter Helio Castroneves finished third and last year’s winner Sam Hornish Jr. was fourth in cars fielded by Penske Racing. Ryan Briscoe rounded out the top five.
The race was halted at about 3 p.m. New York time on lap 113 because of rain with Tony Kanaan in the lead. The rain fell for about an hour and the race started again at about 6 p.m. after workers dried the track. The 32-year-old Brazilian hit the wall on a restart on lap 157. He rejoined the race and finished 12th.
“It was just frustrating, there was no flow to the race,” said the second-placed Dixon, who was closing on Franchitti in the final green-flag laps of the race. “It’s one of those days where you feel like you haven’t even raced, sort of like being on the freeway and watching people smash into each other.”
The race had 11 cautions before the red flag was displayed to end it. An official race can be declared after half of the laps have been run. Nine drivers swapped the lead 23 times in the 415 miles (668 kilometers) that were run at an average 151.774 miles an hour.
Danica Patrick was the highest finisher of three women in the field. She finished in eighth place after running as high as second. Sarah Fisher finished 18th and Venezuelan Milka Duno, making her first Indianapolis 500 start, spun and crashed on lap 66 to finish 31st. She had run as high as 22nd.
It was the second Indianapolis win for Andretti Green Racing since Michael Andretti purchased an interest in the team in 2002. Dan Wheldon, who finished 22nd today, won the race in 2005 for Andretti Green… (Bloomberg)