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INDIANAPOLIS (May 26, 2019) – For the second consecutive year and 11th time overall, Chevrolet has won the Indianapolis 500.
Pole sitter Simon Pagenaud, driving the No. 22 Menards Team Penske Chevrolet, held off Alexander Rossi by .2086 of a second – the seventh-closest finish in the 103 runnings of the “Greatest Spectacle in Racing” – on the final lap to claim his first Indy 500 victory.
Pagenaud is the second Chevrolet driver to win from the pole since four-time Indianapolis 500 winner Rick Mears in 1991. Mears also won from the pole in ’88 in his Team Penske Chevrolet.
“Simon Pagenaud drove an incredible race all afternoon,” said Jim Campbell, Vice President of Performance and Motorsports. “But especially after that final re-start. Kyle Moyer called a great race, the team executed flawlessly in the pits and Simon was perfect under pressure when it mattered most.”
Pagenaud delivered the 18th Indianapolis 500 pole start and 18th victory for team owner Roger Penske dating to his first in 1972.
“And, congratulations to Roger Penske, on his 18th Indianapolis 500 win,” Campbell continued. “This was an absolute one team effort, with Team Penske, Chevrolet Propulsion, Ilmor and Pratt and Miller. Simon and Team Penske had another month of May to remember.”
“It’s hard to believe right now. It had been such an intense race. I know we had the best car,” said Pagenaud, who led a field-high 116 of the 200 laps on the 2.5-mile Indianapolis Motor Speedway oval. “It’s all about executing in the end.”
Team Penske’s Josef Newgarden placed third in the No. 2 Shell V-Power Nitro Plus Chevrolet and Will Power, the 2018 Indy 500 winner, finished fifth in the No. 12 Verizon 5G Chevrolet. Ed Carpenter, who started second in the No. 20 Preferred Freezer Services Chevrolet, finished eighth and 2013 Indy 500 winner Tony Kanaan advanced seven positions in the No. 14 ABC Supply AJ Foyt Racing Chevrolet to place ninth.
Pagenaud is the first driver to win both the Indianapolis 500 and the INDYCAR Grand Prix on the IMS road course from the pole. Chevrolet has swept the May races at Indianapolis Motor Speedway the past two years. Power won the INDYCAR Grand Prix in 2018.
“This is a dream come true,” added Pagenaud, who is the first driver from France to win the Indy 500 since Gaston Chevrolet in 1920. “I never expected to be in this position, but I certainly was trying to make it as hard as I could.”
Fifteen drivers powered by Chevrolet’s 2.2-liter, twin-turbocharged, direct-injected V6 engine qualified for the 200-lap race on the 2.5-mile Indianapolis Motor Speedway oval. Chevrolet drivers swept the front row in qualifying for the second consecutive year and fifth time since the Bowtie brand returned to NTT IndyCar Series manufacturer competition in 2012, and had six drivers start from the first three rows.
Two-time Daytona 500 winner Dale Earnhardt Jr. led the field to the green flag in a 2019 Corvette Grand Sport. It marked the 16th time a Corvette has served as the Indianapolis 500 Pace Car, starting in 1978, and the 30th time a Chevrolet has led the field dating to 1948. No other brand or vehicle has served as the “500” Pace Car more than Chevrolet and the Corvette.
Pagenaud took the championship points lead as the NTT IndyCar Series moves a few hours north for the Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix presented by Lear on June 1 and 2. NBC will telecast the doubleheader on the Belle Isle street course at 3 p.m. ET both days. Power is a two-time winner on the 2.35-mile, 13-turn temporary circuit and Pagenaud has also won at the track.
Article by Team Chevy
Picture by Harold Hinson
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