The 105th Indianapolis 500 presented by Gainbridge will live in the memories of race fans everywhere for so many reasons.
Helio Castroneves’ sheer joy at becoming the fourth four-time winner of “The Greatest Spectacle in Racing” after a scintillating late-race duel with Alex Palou. The crowd of 135,000 that celebrated Helio’s win on a perfect day, as this event became more than a motor race – it was a symbol of America’s biggest step back to normal since the COVID-19 pandemic began more than a year ago.
Want more? How about six different winners from five teams in the first six races of this NTT INDYCAR SERIES season? Or the best Indy 500 TV ratings in five years?
Add it up, and this was a magical Month of May. But it also was a May that required a big eraser, as numerous records in this event – which started in 1911 – were set or tied. Here’s a look:
- Average speed, race: 190.690 mph. (Previous record: 187.433, 2013)
- Time between first and most-recent victory: 20 years, Helio Castroneves (2001-2021). (Previous record: 15 years, Juan Pablo Montoya, 2000, 2015)
- Car number: This is the first “500” win for car No. 06. It’s also the first time a car number starting with zero won the race.
- Fewest caution periods: Two (Previous record: Four, 1990, 2019)
- Fewest caution laps: 18 (Previous record: 21, 1976, 2013, 2014)
- Most times running at finish: 19, Helio Castroneves (broke tie with A.J. Foyt, Al Unser)
- Most cars running at finish: 30 (Previous record: 26, 1911, 2013, 2019)
- Most cars on lead lap at finish: 22 (Previous record: 20, 2014, 2015)
- Most laps completed, field: 6,308 (Previous record: 6,105, 2014)
- Times led, career: 58, Scott Dixon (Dixon led twice to extend his record)
- Field average speed, qualifying: 230.294 mph. (Previous record: 229.382, 2014)
- Youngest front-row starter: Rinus VeeKay, 20 years, 261 days old. (Previous record: Carlos Munoz, 21 years, 144 days, 2013)
- Wins by a driver: Four, Helio Castroneves (2001, 2002, 2009, 2021). (Tied A.J. Foyt, 1961, 1964, 1967, 1977; Al Unser, 1970, 1971, 1978, 1987; Rick Mears, 1979, 1984, 1988, 1991)
- Starts leading at least one lap: 14, Scott Dixon. (Tied Tony Kanaan)
- ‘500” Rookies of the Year in starting field: Nine (Tied 1991)