Monday, May 27, 2013

Kanaan Wins the Indianapolis 500

Written for CLNS Radio.

For 11 years, Tony Kanaan went to Indianapolis with hopes of winning the Indianapolis 500, but every year something went wrong and he was kept out of victory lane.  On Sunday afternoon, he was finally able to break through and win the Indianapolis 500.

Tony Kanaan drives under Marco Andretti (Chris Graythen/Getty Images)
Kanaan started 12th, but he quickly worked his way to the front and took the lead on lap nine.  He ran up front most of the day, but it was not an easy race to win.  This year's race nearly doubled the old record for lead changes, with the lead changing hands 68 times among 14 drivers.  

Kanaan also had a good luck with him in the car on Sunday.  9 years ago, he gave a little girl his lucky medal before she went in for surgery.  The girl, now 24, mailed the medal back to Kanaan, and it was with Kanaan in the car during the race.

When Kanaan was in victory lane, he couldn't find the words to describe how he felt after winning the race that had eluded him his whole career.

"I'm speechless," Kanaan told ABC.  "Finally I'm going to put my ugly face on that trophy."

Rookie Carlos Munoz finished second, and was followed by Ryan Hunter-Reay.  Hunter-Reay was leading when the race restarted after a late-race caution, but he was passed on both sides by Kanaan and Munoz.  Kanaan was leading when the final caution of the race came out just two laps from the finish.  The race never went back green, and Kanaan won the race under caution.

Here are the unofficial results:

1. Tony Kanaan
2. Carlos Munoz
3. Ryan Hunter-Reay
4. Marco Andretti
5. Justin Wilson
6. Helio Castroneves
7. AJ Allmendinger
8. Simon Pagenaud
9. Charlie Kimball
10. Ed Carpenter
11. Oriol Servia
12. Ryan Briscoe
13. Takuma Sato
14. Scott Dixon
15. Ana Beatriz
16. Tristan Vautier
17. Simona De Silvestro
18. EJ Viso
19. Will Power
20. James Jakes
21. James Hinchcliffe
22. Conor Daly
23. Dario Franchitti
24. Alex Tagliani
25. Graham Rahal
26. Katherine Legge
27. Townsend Bell
28. Josef Newgarden
29. Sebastien Bourdais
30. Pippa Mann
31. Buddy Lazier
32. Sebastian Saavedra
33. JR Hildebrand

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