2018 Indianapolis 500 is set for Sunday, and promises to be an exciting competition, as it is every year. It is one of the biggest events in all motorsports, and is part of the so-called "Triple Crown of Motorsport", along with the Grand Prix in Formula 1 and the 24-hour Le Mans.
Drivers will start their engines at about 12:15 pm ET, and the Green Flag (start of the race) is scheduled for just five minutes later, at 12.20. The race will be broadcast on ABC, with online streaming via ESPN. Ed Carpenter has pole position, with Danica Patrick, Helio Castroneves, Alexander Rossi and Josef Newgarden among the other big names to watch out for.
Below we will review everything you need to know to enter the race, whether you are new to sports or not.
The actual competition
Indy 500 is a 200-year-old race around 2.5 miles Indianapolis Motor Speedway. It is always held over Memorial Day weekend at the end of May, and is part of the Verizon IndyCar series, although it is considered to be the biggest contest in the sport itself. The nickname "The Greatest Spectacle in Racing", it is among the most prestigious motorsport events on the calendar.
The initial competition was held in 1
A total of 500 miles will be driven by every finished driver when it is all said and done, and the track is a traditional oval. Running time Indy 500 started, it often took up to five hours to actually complete, but these days the competition can be expected to end somewhere just past the three-hour mark.
It's a competition full of tradition, including the unique character of its qualified format, before and after race ceremonies and parties, a whole lot of milk (even more at on later) and so much more .
The Type of Competition
] IndyCar is pack racing, regardless of the circuit, and it always creates the risk of danger and of course excitement. It's not just cars running around an oval counterclockwise … there are cars running oval counterclockwise extremely quickly and extremely close to each other .
They drive the absolute edge of what these cars can handle, and they do it within inches of each other. It's not always oval, because IndyCar-spec vehicles must also be able to navigate in the many courses on the calendar, some of which are bank courses. However, Indy 500 is always oval, and it's always right on the edge of how fast you can actually take a car around the oval without destroying all 33 drivers.
The Indy 500 field is 33 drivers, and 35 of them participated in Bump Day (held Saturday May 19 this year), the first part of the qualification where top 33 goes on to the next stage called Pole Day (held on sunday, May 20 this year).
The top nine drivers from the first day participate in a quick Nine shootout over four laps, with the highest average speed over the laps that get Pole Position for the race.
Even on Pole Day, positions 10-33 will have another qualification session to determine their network setup. Their times from Bump Day are wiped out, and they put all new times in the new session.
This year, Ed Carpenter is on pole after sending an average speed of 229,618 mph. James Davison starts from the back of the pack with an average qualified speed of 224,798 mph. If the two numbers seem very close to you, just know that in the world of racing … they are not.
Indy 500 launch route
The starting network consists of 11 rows of three drivers in the order
Row 1: Ed Carpenter, Simon Pagenaud, Will Power
Row 2: Josef Newgarden, Sébastien Bourdais, Spencer Pigot
Row 5: Zachary Claman DeMelo, Ryan Hunter-Reay, Charlie Kimball
Row 6: Takuma Sato , Kyle Kaiser, Robert Wickens
Row 7: James Davison, Max Chilton, Carlos Muñoz
Row 8: Gabby Chaves, Stefan Wilson, Sage Karam
Row 9: Zach Veach, Oriol Servià, JR Hildebrand
] Rad 10: Jay Howard, Ed Jones, Graham Rahal
Row 11: Jack Harvey, Alexander Rossi, Conor Daly
As part of the IndyCar series Indy 500 is the sixth breed on the garden. There were four different winners during the first five races of the season: Newgarden (x2), Rossi, Bourdais and Power. Newgarden leads the current driver with 184 points, with Rossi behind him at 176 points. In the manufacturer's position, Honda has the edge over Chevrolet, with 413 points to 356.
Fast Nine already has points from Indy, as there are points awarded for qualification as well. Indy 500's first winner will earn 50 points, with second place taking 40th and third place earn 35. James Hinchcliffe is fifth in the position, but did not qualify for Indy 500. More about it below.
The top storylines
Hinchcliffe encountered: A fan favorite, Hinchcliffe, was not qualified in the 33 best drivers, beside Pippa Mann, and encountered Bump Day. There were several rain delays, and Hinchcliffe has to cancel one of his qualified attempts due to vibration in the car. He was busy setting a time when the qualifying session expired. He is remarkable for winning the pole for the race in 2016, with his best finish as the seventh overall.
Castroneves Quest: The only active driver with three Indy 500 wins under his belt, Castroneves will start eighth on the grid as he tries to make history. As mentioned above, only three other Indy 500 won four times, and Castroneves desperately wants to join that company. He had a disappointment on Pole Day, but was the fastest of all drivers on Bump Day, and many pulls that he would get it done again at the age of 43.
"It's a shame we did not get the pole position," Castroneves told ABC after qualifying, "but I prefer the win."
Patrick's Singing Song: While future one-time events are an opportunity, Patrick is like a full-time racing driver with this Indy 500. She is the only woman ever to hit Indy 500, making it in 2005 and 2011. The 2011 race was also the last time she kissed Indy 500, so the fact that she not only made it to Fast Nine but qualified both Castroneves and Dixon is quite remarkable.
This will be Patricks Eighth Indy 500, with her best finish as third – the best ever for a woman in event – 2009. She was also the first woman to lead a lap in Indy 500.
The Elimant Victory of the Carpenter : While he has a pole position for the third time in his Indy 500 career, Carpenter has never won the race. He is a team owner, a 37-year-old driver with 14 starting in Indy 500, and he is stepon Tony George, a family member who owns the dang speedway he is driving. But he has never managed better than fifth, as he did 2008. Last year, he started second and ended 11th.
How to look at Indianapolis 500
All Times Eastern
Date: Sunday , May
Location: Indianapolis Motor Speedway, Indianapolis, In.
Green Flag: 12:20
TV: ABC (from 11 am)
Online Streaming: WatchESPN, ESPN App