2021 Indy 500: Driver Achievements

You may know the names but can you remember what they have done? It can be hard to remember just what 33 drivers have accomplished.

I made some notes to refer to during the 2021 Indy 500, essentially summarising Wikipedia so I didn’t have to look them up during the race. Then I thought, why not tidy them up and post them here?

Apologies if the formatting is wonky. WordPress made a new editor and it is terrible.

Listings are team by team.

All cars are Dallara DW12 Mk.III plus Aeroscreen; Firestone tyres.

Chip Ganassi Racing

Fastest team all week through practice and qualifying, appear to be able to put their cars anywhere when others can’t, until the temperatures cooled on Friday and others found themselves able to join in. If it is hot it is Dixon’s to lose.

Scott Dixon
“Iceman”
9 / Orange & Blue / PNC Bank
Chip Ganassi RacingHonda
Best 500:2008 Winner
IndyCar CV: 2003, 2008, 2013, 2015, 2018 & 2020 champion
(2nd most all-time);
51 wins (3rd all-time);
2000 Indy Lights champion;
Outside IndyCar2006, 2015 & 2020 Daytona 24 Hours overall win;
2018 Daytona 24 Hours GTLM class win;
2016 Le Mans 24 Hours GTE Pro podium;
Last Win:2021 Texas (race 1);
Alex Palou10 / Blue & White / NTT Data
Chip Ganassi RacingHonda
Best 500:28th, 2020
IndyCar CV: 2nd season;
Won opening round at Barber;
Outside IndyCar:3rd in 2019 Super Formula, winner at Fuji;
15th in 2019 Super GT GT300 class;
10th in 2017 World Series by Renault despite only doing half the season;
2 years in GP3;
Last Win:2021 GP of Alabama;
Marcus Ericsson8 / Red & White / Huski Chocolate
Chip Ganassi RacingHonda
Best 500:23rd, 2019
IndyCar CV: 3rd season;
1 podium, Detroit 2019;
12th in 2020 IndyCar;
Outside IndyCar:F1 with Caterham (2014) and Sauber (2015-2018), best year 17th in points, best race finish 8th;
GP2 Series race winner, 6th in points;
2009 All-Japan F3 champion;
2007 Formula BMW UK champion;
Last Win:2013 GP2 at Nurburgring;
Tony Kanaan48 / Blue & White / American Legion
Chip Ganassi RacingHonda
Best 500:2013 Winner
IndyCar CV: 2004 champion; 2nd in 2005, 3rd in 2007 & 2008;
17 wins;
1997 Indy Lights champion;
Completed 22 full seasons in CART/IndyCar competition until the end of 2019.
Outside IndyCar:2015 Daytona 24 Hours winner;
2007 Sebring 12 Hours 2nd overall, LMP2 class win;
Last Win:2015 Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona (DP, Ganassi Riley);

Team Penske

Strangely off the boil all week, especially in qualifying. In race trim they will be better and will work forwards, but on pace alone they won’t add to their 18 Indy 500 wins this year. McLaughlin is seriously impressing. Power on the back row will be looking to make early gains.

Josef Newgarden2 / White & Black / Shell
Team PenskeChevrolet
Best 500:3rd (2016, Carpenter Racing)
IndyCar CV:2017 & 2019 champion;
2011 Indy Lights champion;
Outside IndyCar:2nd in 2009 British Formula Ford;
2008 Formula Ford Festival win (Kent class)
Last Win:2020 St Pete (last round of season);
Will Power12 / Black / Verizon 5G
Team PenskeChevrolet
Best 500:2018 Winner
IndyCar CV: 2014 champion;
Runner-up 2010, 2011, 2012, 2016;
39 wins;
Outside IndyCar:7th in 2005 World Series by Renault, missed 4 races;
2002 Formula Holden champion;
18th in 2002 Bathurst 1000;
Last Win:2020 Harvest GP (race 2) at IMS;
Simon Pagenaud22 / Flourescent Yellow / Menard’s
Team PenskeChevrolet
Best 500:2019 Winner
IndyCar CV:2016 champion;
Runner-up 2017 & 2019;
15 wins;
Outside IndyCar:2010 American Le Mans LMP1 champion;
2nd at 2021 Daytona 24 Hours;
2nd in 2009 ALMS;
2nd overall 2009 Le Mans 24 with Peugeot;
Last Win:2020 Iowa 250 (race 1);
Scott McLaughlin3 / Canary Yellow / Pennzoil
Team PenskeChevrolet
Best 500:Rookie
IndyCar CV:Debut year;
2nd at Texas;
Outside IndyCar:2018, 2019, 2020 Supercars champion;
56 race wins;
2019 Bathurst 1000 winner;
Last Win:2020 Supercars at The Bend;

Paretta Autosport (with support from Team Penske)

75% ‘female forward’ has been respectable all month having been trained up by Penske. Being tied to a team having a bad Indy isn’t so good. Deserves better than just aiming for a finish.

Simona de Silvestro
“Swiss Missile”
16 / Red & White / Rocket Pro TPO
Paretta AutosportChevrolet
Best 500:14th, 2010
IndyCar CV:5x Indy 500 starter;
4 full seasons, best result 2nd in Houston 2013 to finish 13th in points;
Outside IndyCar:3 seasons in Supercars with Nissan, best result 7th to finish 19th in points;
13th at 2019 Bathurst 1000;
12th at 2019 Daytona 24 Hours GTD class;
Full season in 2015/16 Formula E with Amlin Andretti, best result 9th;
3rd in 2009 Champ Car Atlantic with 4 wins;
Last Win:2009 Formula Atlantic at Trois-Rivieres;

Ed Carpenter Racing

Fastest Chevy team all week, all three cars hooked up especially in race trim. The most serious threat to Ganassi. Could be Ed’s year if they can unseat Scott from the front.

Ed Carpenter20 / Red, White, Black / Sonax
Ed Carpenter RacingChevrolet
Best 500:2nd, 2018;
3-time pole sitter;
IndyCar CV:3 wins;
Usually competes on the ovals only;
Best full-season points finish 12th (2009);
Biggest achievement is being a successful owner/driver in the modern era;
Outside IndyCar:A couple of Daytona 24 Hours in the original DP era, best finish 12th in class (2008);
Raced various USAC series from 1998 to 2002;
Last Win:2014 Texas 600km;
Rinus ‘VeeKay’ van Kalmthout21 / Black & Orange / Bitcoin
Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet
Best 500:20th, 2020
IndyCar CV:Debut win at IMS GP in early May;
2nd season;
2nd in 2019 Indy Lights;
2018 Pro Mazda champion;
Outside IndyCar:Debut 24 Hour race at 2021 Daytona 24 Hours LMP2 class but DNF with misfire;
Last Win:2021 Indy GP;
Conor Daly47 / Silver, Yellow, Red / US Air Force
Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet
Best 500:10th, 2019
IndyCar CV:69 races. Nice.
Best race result 2nd at Detroit 2016.
Best season result 18th (twice, 2016 & 2017);
A lot of under-funded part-time seasons;
For 2020 and 2021 runs road courses & Indy 500 with ECR and other ovals with Carlin.
A driver needing more budget.
Outside IndyCar:8th in 2015 IMSA PC class;
26th in 2014 GP2 series with under-funded team and missing races;
3rd in 2013 GP3;
2010 Star Mazda champion;
Dabbled in NASCAR;
Last Win:2013 GP3 at Valencia Ricardo Tormo;

Rahal Letterman Lanigan

2-time winner Takuma Sato has to be considered the most serious contender even with Graham Rahal’s undoubted oval speed. As a team they are a threat and will be in the mix. Will be surprised if the other car finishes, he’s makes bold moves and it’ll bite him.

Graham Rahal15 / White & Blue / United Rentals
Rahal Letterman Lanigan Honda
Best 500:3rd, 2011 & 2020
IndyCar CV:6 wins, multiple podiums;
Best season 4th in 2015;
Outside IndyCar:3rd at 2020 Petit Le Mans with Penske Acura;
2x 4th at Daytona 24 Hours GTLM class with Rahal BMW;
A1GP;
Last Win:2017 Detroit Belle Isle (won both races of a double-header);
Takuma Sato
“Taku”
30 / Dark Blue & Orange / People Ready
Rahal Letterman Lanigan Honda
Best 500:2017 & 2020 Winner
IndyCar CV:4 other wins including Long Beach;
Best points finish 7th, 2020;
Seems to be driving better than ever.
Outside IndyCar:5 seasons in F1 (Jordan, BAR, Super Aguri), best points result of 8th
F1 podium at the USGP on the IMS road course;
2001 British F3 champion;
2001 Macau GP winner;
2001 Masters of F3;
Occasional races in Super Formula, WEC and 1 Formula E start.
Last Win:2020 Indianapolis 500;
Santino Ferrucci45 / Red and Green / HyVee
Rahal Letterman Lanigan Honda
Best 500:4th, 2020
IndyCar CV:Finished 4th four times including Indy;
Two full seasons and some one-off starts;
Outside IndyCar:Banned by the FIA for two F2 races after making deliberate contact with his team-mate, fired by Trident for allegedly making racist comments about same team-mate, failing to make sponsorship payments to the team, alleged (by Trident) to have used the money to pay Dale Coyne to race in IndyCar. An Italian court ordered him to pay Trident €502,000 plus costs.

Will enter 20 NASCAR races this year.
Last Win:2015 Toyota Racing Series at Manfield;

Andretti Autosport

Herta and Rossi looked quick and I think one or both will lead at some point. As for the rest I honestly think the armada is too big this year. Hinchcliffe and Andretti looked totally lost. Then again he has said this week they found a damaged floor, replaced it and the car was tranformed. Anyway, I think Marco should drive for Shank, an arms-length affiliated team.

Stefan Wilson25 / White & Blue / Lohla Sport
Andretti Autosport Honda
Best 500:15th, 2018
On a strategy hoping for a late yellow, had to pit with 4 laps to go
IndyCar CV:3 starts, twice at Indy;
3rd in 2011 Indy Lights;
Outside IndyCar:2007 McLaren Autosport BRDC Award;
2nd in 2007 Formula Palmer Audi;
Last Win:2011 Indy Lights at Kentucky;
Colton Herta26 / Black & Yellow / Gainbridge
Andretti Autosport Honda
Best 500:8th, 2020
IndyCar CV:4 wins including St Pete this year;
3rd in points last year;
2nd in 2018 Indy Lights;
Outside IndyCar:2019 Daytona 24 Hours GTLM class win (BMW);
3rd in 2016 Euroformula Open (F3);
Last Win:2021 St. Petersburg;
Alexander Rossi27 / Blue & Yellow / NAPA
Andretti Autosport Honda
Best 500:2016 Winner
IndyCar CV:7 wins including Indy, Long Beach, Road America;
Outside IndyCar:5 F1 starts and reserve for Manor Marussia;
Winner 2021 Daytona 24 Hours;
10th in LMP2 at 2013 Le Mans 24 Hours;
2nd in 2015 GP2 Series;
3rd in 2011 World Series by Renault;
2008 FBMW World Final champion;
2008 FBMW America champion;
Last Win:2021 IMSA Rolex 24 Hours (DPi, Taylor Acura);
Ryan Hunter-Reay28 / Yellow & Red / DHL
Andretti Autosport Honda
Best 500:2014 Winner
IndyCar CV:2012 Champion;
18 wins;
17th season;
Outside IndyCar:2018 Petit Le Mans winner;
2020 Sebring 12 Hours winner;
18th at 2019 Bathurst 1000 with Hinchcliffe;
Last Win:2020 IMSA 12 Hours of Sebring (DPi, Mazda);
James Hinchcliffe29 / Orange & White / Genesys
Andretti Steinbrenner Autosport Honda
Best 500:6th, 2012;
2016 pole sitter;
IndyCar CV:6 wins;
Best seasons 2012 & 2013, 8th in both, but still a podium contender always;
2nd in 2010 Indy Lights;
Outside IndyCar:A1GP podium finisher;
Occasional IMSA starts;
18th at 2019 Bathurst 1000 with Rossi;
Dancing With The Stars 2016 2nd place;
Last Win:2018 Iowa 300;
Marco Andretti98 / Red & Orange / Gleaners
Andretti Herta Autosport Honda
Best 500:2nd, 2006;
2020 pole sitter;
IndyCar CV:2 wins;
Best points year 5th in 2013;
Outside IndyCar:2008 A1GP podium finisher;
2008 occasional ALMS starts with Andretti Green, very fast at Sebring before a DNF;
2010 Le Mans 24 Hours with Rebellion (DNF);
1 Formula E start;
Last Win:2011 Iowa 250;

Meyer Shank Racing (with support from Andretti Autosport)

For a while it looked like these would be the fastest Andretti-affiliated cars. They still might be! Harvey has impressed all year and Helio seems to be loving being out of the pressure cooker, into the small family atmosphere here.

Hélio Castroneves
“Spiderman”
06 / Black & Pink / Sirius XM
Meyer Shank RacingHonda
Best 500:2001, 2002 & 2009 Winner;
4x pole sitter;
IndyCar CV:20 year full-time career 1998-2017, including 18 years with Team Penske;
30 wins;
2nd in points 4 times;
Outside IndyCar:3 further years with Penske in IMSA;
2020 IMSA champion;
2021 Daytona 24 Hours winner;
2008 Petit Le Mans winner;
2007 Dancing With The Stars winner;
Last Win:2021 IMSA Rolex Daytona 24 Hours (DPi Acura);
Jack Harvey60 / Pink & Black / Sirius XM
Meyer Shank Racing Honda
Best 500:9th, 2020
IndyCar CV:2nd full-time season after 2 part seasons;
4x Indy 500 starter;
Best race finish 3rd at 2019 Indy GP;
Runner-up in Indy Lights both years entered, Freedom 100 winner;
Outside IndyCar:5th in 2013 GP3;
2012 British F3 champion;
2010 F.BMW Europe runner-up;
Last Win:2015 Freedom 100 (Indy Lights);

Arrow McLaren SP

Just shy of ECR’s pace and better than a bunch of Andrettis. O’Ward was quick at Texas so will factor. Rosenqvist seems to have struggled more this year. JPM is JPM, strangely off the pace but putting the car in places only JPM could put a car, he’ll move forward have no doubt.

Patricio ‘Pato’ O’Ward5 / Orange & Black / Arrow
Arrow McLaren SP Chevrolet
Best 500:6th, 2020
IndyCar CV:2nd full season with Arrow McLaren SP following a part season with Carlin;
1st win at Texas this year;
Multiple podiums in 2020;
2018 Indy Lights champion winning 9 of 17 races;
Outside IndyCar:2017 IMSA PC class champion winning 7 of 8 races;
3x Super Formula starts;
2x F2 starts;
Last Win:2021 Texas (race 2;
Felix Rosenqvist7 / Tiger Pattern / Vuse
Arrow McLaren SP Chevrolet
Best 500:12th, 2020
IndyCar CV:3rd full season;
2 years with Ganassi including 1 win;
Best result this year is 12th at St Pete;
Outside IndyCar:Extremely versatile;
3x Formula E wins;
11th in 2018 Daytona 24 Hours P class;
10th in 2018 Super GT points;
3rd in 2017 Super Formula points;
12th in 2017 Le Mans 24Hr LMP2 class;
3rd in 2016/17 Formula E points;
7th in 2016 Blancpain GT Sprint (GT3);
Half-season in 2016 DTM;
2015 Formula 3 European champion;
2014 & 2015 Macau GP winner;
2011 & 2013 Masters of F3 winner;
Last Win:2020 Road America (race 2);
Juan Pablo Montoya86 / White & Orange / Arrow
Arrow McLaren SP Chevrolet
Best 500:2000 & 2015 Winner;
IndyCar CV:1999 CART champion beat Dario Franchitti on tie-break;
2nd in 2015 IndyCar Series lost to Scott Dixon on tie-break;
15 wins;
Outside IndyCar:94 F1 starts with Williams & McLaren;
255 NASCAR Cup starts with Ganassi;
7 F1 wins including 2003 Monaco;
2 NASCAR Cup wins (Sonoma, Watkins Glen);
2007, 2008 & 2013 Rolex 24 Hours of Daytona winner and twice runner-up;
2018-2020 full IMSA seasons with Penske Acura, 3 wins;
3rd in 2018 Le Mans 24 Hour LMP2 class;
1998 Formula 3000 champion;
Record-holder fastest F1 top speed (231.5mph, Monza);
Last Win:2019 IMSA Laguna Seca (DPi, Acura);

AJ Foyt Enterprises

Hell of a struggle just to get their cars qualified and one of them, Kimball, didn’t get in. Kellett qualified on the first day against everyone’s predictions! Can’t doubt the quality of Hildebrand and Bourdais but it could be a long day for this team.

Sebastien Bourdais14 / Black & White / ROKit
AJ Foyt Enterprises Chevrolet
Best 500:7th, 2014
IndyCar CV:4x Champ Car World Series champion;
37 wins across CCWS & IndyCar;
Best post-merger standings 7th in 2018;
Outside IndyCar:2008 & 2009 F1 with Toro Rosso;
14 participations at Le Mans 24 Hours;
2016 GTE Pro class win (Ford);
2007, 2009, 2011 2nd place LMP1 (Peugeot);
13 participations at Sebring 12 Hours:
2021 overall winner (Cadillac DPi);
2015 overall winner (Corvette DP);
2009 & 2010 2nd place LMP1 (Peugeot);
2006 GT2 class winner (Panoz);
12 participations at Daytona 24 Hours;
2014 winner overall (Corvette DP);
2015 P class runner-up;
2017 GTLM class win;
2009 & 2010 part seasons Superleague Formula;
2002 Formula 3000 champion;
1999 French F3 champion;
Last Win:2021 IMSA Sebring 12 Hours (DPi, Cadillac);
Dalton Kellett4 / White & Cyan / K-Line
AJ Foyt Enterprises Chevrolet
Best 500:31st, 2020 (rookie)
IndyCar CV:Part season in 2020 became full season this year;
Best finish 18th at Barber and Texas 1;
7th in Indy Lights points in 2018 & 2019;
Outside IndyCar:Won 2 IMSA LMP2 races from two starts, although only two cars participated in the class;
Last win:2019 IMSA LMP2 Laguna Seca;
JR Hildebrand1 / White & Red / ABC Supply
AJ Foyt Enterprises Chevrolet
Best 500:2nd, 2011
Seems his role in life is to never better the most famous 2nd place in motorsports history, a tragedy;
IndyCar CV:10 Indy 500 starts;
65 IndyCar races;
Only 3 full seasons, always finds an Indy program, often under-funded;
Best finish is 2nd at Indy and Iowa;
2009 Indy Lights champion;
Outside IndyCar:2nd in LMPC class of 2010 Sebring 12 Hours;
2nd in class at 2018 Pikes Peak Hillclimb (Porsche GT4);
Last Win:2009 Indy Lights Sonoma;

Dale Coyne Racing

Jones should be able to get it well into the top 20. I think just scoring a finish would do for Fittipaldi’s Indy debut, he’s running the car of Grosjean on the ovals.

Pietro Fittipaldi51 / White & Red
Dale Coyne Racing
with Rick Ware Racing
Honda
Best 500:Rookie
IndyCar CV:8 starts. Best finish 9th at Portland 2018;
Outside IndyCar:2 F1 starts in 2020 with Haas;
15th in 2019 DTM, best finish 5th (Audi);
2017 World Series by Renault champion;
2011 NASCAR All-American Series champion;
Scheduled to compete at Le Mans & IndyCar in 2017 but broke his legs at Spa;
Last Win:2017 WSbR FR3.5 at Mexico City;
Ed Jones18 / Black & Yellow / Sealmaster
Dale Coyne Racing
with Vasser-Sullivan
Honda
Best 500:3rd, 2017
IndyCar CV:4th season;
Best points result 13th (2018) with Ganassi;
Best race finish 3rd (x3);
2016 Indy Lights champion;
Outside IndyCar:14th at 2021 Daytona 24 Hours GTD class;
2013 European F3 Open champion;
Last Win:2016 Indy Lights at IMS road course;

Carlin

Chilton has big aims after leading in the past but I don’t think he’ll reach such heights this time, perhaps mid-pack, he got 17th with the team last year.

Max Chilton59 / Blue / Gallagher
CarlinChevrolet
Best 500:4th, 2017
IndyCar CV:68 starts;
Best finish 4th at 2017 Indy 500;
Has led the 500 on pace;
Failed to qualify for 2019 Indy 500;
5th in 2015 Indy Lights, missed some races to do LM24;
Outside IndyCar:2013 & 2014 F1 seasons with Marussia;
4th in 2012 GP2 Series (2 wins);
2015 Le Mans 24 with the ill-fated Nissan GTR-LM;
Last Win:2015 Iowa Indy Lights;

Dreyer & Reinbold Racing

Karam qualified last row and I think he’ll move forward to the mid-pack.

Sage Karam24 / Blue & White / AES Indiana
Dreyer & Reinbold Racing Chevrolet
Best 500:9th, 2014
IndyCar CV:7 Indy 500 starts, usually one of only a few ICS races he does each year;
Best race finish is 3rd at Iowa 2015, the only year he ran most of the season;
2013 Indy Lights champion;
Outside IndyCar:6th at 2014 Sebring 12 Hours P class (Ford Ganassi); 2nd at IMS the same year;
2017 with Lexus in IMSA GTD class, best result 5th;
6th in Americas Rallycross 2019 only competing in 5 of 9 rounds, finishing 1st or 2nd in those attended;
Last Win:2019 Americas Rallycross Mid-Ohio;

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