The Greatest Spectacle in Racing has delivered a number of thrilling finishes in its 104 years.
The Indy 500 has seen plenty of winners cruise throughout the end line simply break up seconds earlier than the second-place automobile and never since 1990 has a winner taken first-place by a 10-second or larger margin of victory.
With the one hundred and fifth operating developing this weekend, we’re looking at the closest finishes in race history, in keeping with the official occasions shared by Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Could racing followers on Sunday be due for one more shut end? Here are the closest finishes in Indy 500 history.
Closest Indy 500 finishes in history
|Year||Winner||2nd place||Margin of victory|
|1992||Al Unser Jr.||Scott Goodyear||0.043 seconds|
|2014||Ryan Hunter-Reay||Helio Castroneves||0.0600 seconds|
|2006||Sam Hornish Jr.||Marco Andretti||0.0635 seconds|
|2015||Juan Pablo Montoya||Will Power||0.1046 seconds|
|1982||Gordon Johncock||Rick Mears||0.1600 seconds|
1992: Al Unser Jr. over Scott Goodyear
The Unser identify is written throughout the Indy 500. Al Unser is certainly one of simply three drivers to win the race 4 occasions and Bobby Unser received it 3 times. But in 1992, it was Al’s son, Al Unser Jr., who added the Indy 500 trophy to the household award case.
The race was stuffed with plenty of crashes, together with from father and son combo Mario and Jeff Andretti. Michael Andretti, Mario’s son and Jeff’s brother, led for many of the race after having set a brand new first-lap file of 210.339 mph. But Unser Jr. took a lead late, passing each his dad and Michael Andretti.
Unser Jr. confronted strain from Scott Goodyear with seven laps remaining. Goodyear had come all the manner up from the thirty third place and would have been the first Indy 500 driver to complete first from the final place spot, however Unser Jr. got here in forward at 3:43:05.148, simply 0.043 forward of Goodyear, the closest end of all time. A month after the race, nonetheless, USAC technical director Mike Devin stated that the race possible ended even nearer at a 0.0331 margin.
2014: Ryan Hunter-Reay over Helio Castroneves
An American-born driver hadn’t received the Indy 500 since 2006 coming into the race, however the discipline in 2014 was wanting robust. Ed Carpenter received the pole place, Ryan Hunter-Reay and Marco Andretti each topped 224 mph on the second day of apply and Kurt Busch was racing in his first — and what can be up to now his solely — IndyAutomobile Series race.
Hunter-Reay broke the file midway via the race by averaging 211.871 mph and seemed to be in a commanding place regardless of starting the race at No. 11. Late in the race, a crimson flag took almost 11 minutes, and the race did not return to inexperienced till solely six laps remained.
Marco Castroneves made an try and go Hunter-Reay late and had a quick lead on 196, however Hunter-Reay took the lead on 197 and held on to complete the race at 2:40:48.2305, coming in 0.0600 over Castroneves. Hunter-Reay led the race for 56 laps, the most of any driver.
2006: Sam Hornish Jr. over Marco Andretti
Another member of a outstanding racing household, Marco Andretti was racing in his first Indy 500 in 2006 and landed himself in the No. 9 spot, simply 4 spots forward of his dad, Michael Andretti. But certainly one of the bigget racers of be aware was Sam Hornish Jr., a two-time winner of the IndyAutomobile Series, who, regardless of the total racing success, had by no means received the Indy 500.
Hornish put himself in place early by successful the pole place with a four-lap pace of 228.985 mph. But it was Dan Wheldon that dominated the race. Wheldon led from laps 10 via 34, once more between 39 and 107, between 111 and 124, and between 145 and 182 to complete the day forward in 148 of the laps, whereas Hornish was second main in simply 19.
In the finish, it got here all the way down to the Andrettis and Hornish. Michael took the lead in lap 194 and fell behind on 198 to Marco. It wasn’t till 450 toes remained in the race that Hornish pulled forward, changing into the first driver to efficiently go for the lead on the remaining lap to return away with the win. He cruised in at only a 0.0635 seconds in entrance of Marco to win the race with a time of three:10:58.7590.
2015: Juan Pablo Montoya over Will Power
Before 2014, Juan Pablo Montoya had not competed in IndyAutomobile since successful the 2000 Indy 500. Montoya hung out racing in Formula One, NASCAR and Grand Am earlier than returning to race in the 2014 Indy 500 for Team Penske, when he positioned fifth total.
For a lot of the 2015 Indy 500, it appeared like all the pieces was understanding for Scott Dixon to assert his second title. He received the No. 1 place and led for the first 18 laps. He discovered himself consistently battling again into first place, finally ending the race having led in a race-high 84 laps.
Montoya and Will Power stayed proper with him, although, and lap 187 was the final time Dixon would have the edge. Power led till 192, then retook the lead for 193 earlier than Montoya handed him for the lead on 197. Montoya by no means relinquished his edge, ending 0.1046 seconds forward of Power with a time of three:05:56.5286 to win his second Indy 500.
1982: Gordon Johncock over Rick Mears
There had by no means been a race end with a margin of victory that was below a second till 1982. There had solely been 4 races even to complete with a margin of victory below 10 seconds.
But in 1982, Gordon Johncock and Rick Mears delivered certainly one of the sport’s most memorable races. Johncock briefly took the lead from A.J. Foyt on lap 23 earlier than Don Whittington took the edge. Mears, who began with the No. 1 place, had the edge from 36 to 41 and once more from 60 to 63. Foyt as soon as once more pulled forward for lap 64 earlier than Mears took command for some time, main 65 via 94.
From that time, Mears and Johncock traded off the lead, with Tom Sneva’s lead from 142 to 154 being the solely interval after lap 64 that certainly one of the two aforementioned drivers wasn’t forward. Mears regained the edge at 155 and led till Johncock completed lap 160 forward. He by no means relinquished the lead and completed having led for 57 laps to Mears’ 77. Still, Mears stored it shut all through, ending the race at 0.16 behind Johncock’s time of three:05:09.140, a then-record for slimmest margin of victory.
Races below warning
The closest race ever to wrap up truly got here in 2012, when Dario Franchitti got here in forward of Scott Dixon by simply 0.0295 seconds. However, like a number of different slim finishes, that race ended below warning. Here are a few of the different shut races that completed below warning.
- 2020: Takuma Sato over Scott Dixon — 0.0577
- 2013: Tony Kanaan over Carlos Muñoz — 0.1159
- 2005: Dan Wheldon over Vitor Meira — 0.1302
- 2010: Dario Franchitti over Dan Wheldon — 0.1536
- 2004: Buddy Rice over Tony Kanaan — 0.1559