Two things I would like to see during the NEXT five years-- a 240 mph lap and another Andretti on the Borg-Warner Trophy at long last.
Fact: It’s 2015, which means we are halfway through the 2010s. While the decade still has a lot to offer in the way of the Indy 500 and improvements to be made at IMS, it has already given us some iconic moments. Let’s take a look back on five of the most memorable from the past five years of the Indy 500.
ONE: TONY KANAAN’S WIN. In 2013, Tony Kanaan took home his first Indy 500 win. It was a moment that he, and his entire fan base, had long awaited. A 12-year wait, to be exact. “The last lap was the longest lap of my life,” Tony said after his win. We’d love to see you do it again, TK!
TWO: JIM NABORS’ FAREWELL. It was hard to accept the fact that Jim Nabors singing “Back Home Again” had to come to an end. For some it’s probably still hard to accept. But in 2014, Jim gave his final performance during the pre-race ceremonies. Thanks for the memories, Jim!
THREE: THE SNAKE PIT RETURNS. The original Turn 1 “Snake Pit” will forever hold a place in the hearts (and drunken memories) of young Indy 500 fans in the 1960s and ’70s. In 2010, we recreated the Snake Pit to create a summer destination for today’s younger-generation. The Indy 500 Snake Pit presented by Miller Lite is now a must-attend event for college kids all over the Midwest. And with concerts by the top DJs in the world, all your friends and an “anything goes” dress code – who wouldn’t want to be there?
FOUR: FRANCHITTI’S THIRD WIN. In 2012, Dario Franchitti became a member of the three-time winners club. That year also resulted in a 1-2 finish for Ganassi when Franchitti’s teammate, Scott Dixon, finished second. At the conclusion of the 2013 IndyCar season, Dario retired. But not to worry, Dario can still be seen around the Speedway with his usual Target Chip Ganassi Racing crew. He’s currently a competition director for the team.
FIVE: 100th ANNIVERSARY RACE. 2011 marked the 100th anniversary race (not to be confused with the 100th Running, which happens in 2016). The month was filled with unforgettable moments like Alex Tagliani winning the pole position. He was the first Canadian to do so. It was also the first Indy 500 pole for team owner Sam Schmidt. The 2011 race also left us with a finish we won’t soon forget, as rookie JR Hildebrand was leading the final lap when he crashed in Turn 4 and fan-favorite Dan Wheldon instead crossed the bricks first to win his second Indianapolis 500.