Helio Castroneves Wins 2021 Indy 500

The 105th Indy 500 is in the books and history was made in a way that I don’t think most people were expecting. Though before we get into that we want to address something first.

You’ve probably noticed our motorsport coverage has been kind of sparse lately. There are several reasons for that but the main one is that we’re re-thinking how we cover F1 and Indy Car. Frankly, it’s taken us a bit longer to figure it out than we wanted but we’ll get there!

For now we’re going to briefly get into the highlights of the Indy 500 and talk about how Helio Castroneves joined the very exclusive 4-time winner club.

2021 Indy 500 starting grid. Photo by Karl Zemlin
Photo by Karl Zemlin

After a near month-long wind up to the Indy 500, Sunday started with Scott Dixon on the pole position after a monster qualifying run the previous weekend.

Dixon is a scary guy to have at the front of the field. He has tons of experience, multiple championships, and a previous (2008) Indy 500 win (from pole position) in his resume. In short, he knows how to win.

However, things quickly fell apart for Dixon when he came in for a pit stop on lap 36 when his car shut down. His crew was unable to get the car re-started for what seemed like an eternity and as a result Dixon fell several laps behind. Eventually he was able to get back on the lead lap but he was unable to do better than a 17th place finish.

Meanwhile, Conor “The Mighty Mullet” Daly got the crowd hyped as he managed to find his way to the lead and was looking strong. Yet, he faced some unexpected misfortunate as well.

In a very scary moment, the left rear tire of Graham Rahal’s car came loose after a botched pit stop. Rahal went into the wall while the loose tire continued to bounce down the track towards on-coming traffic.

The wheel actually hit the nose of Daly’s car and then bounced up and off the windscreen. Were it not for that windscreen, there is a very good chance that large, heavy wheel would have struck Conor’s helmet while traveling at triple digit speeds.

During the last stint of the race, it was Helio Castroneves battling against the young driver Alex Palou for the win. The two drivers traded the lead back and fourth but the more experienced Castroneves knew exactly when to strike and snatched the lead away from Palou just as the drivers were approaching lapped traffic.

Helio Castroneves climbing the fence after winning the 105th Indianapolis 500. Photo by Doug Mathews
Helio Castroneves climbing the fence after winning the 105th Indianapolis 500. Photo by Doug Mathews

Helio used that traffic to his advantage to pull away from Palou and get the win. Helio Castroneves joins A.J. Foyt, Rick Mears, and Al Unser as the only drivers in history to have four Indy 500 wins in their career.

Palou finished second which should only make the young and talented driver even more hungry for a win and 2019 Indy 500 winner Simon Pagenaud grabbed the third spot on the podium.

Despite Castroneves being 46 years old and only racing part time this season, he made it clear that this would not be the last we see of him.

Helio Castroneves drinking strawberry milk after winning the 105th Indianpolis 500. Photo by Joe Skibinski
Helio Castroneves drinking strawberry milk after winning the 105th Indianpolis 500. Photo by Joe Skibinski

“It’s not the end; it’s the beginning,” Castroneves said. “I don’t know if it’s a good comparison, but Tom Brady won a Super Bowl, Phil (Mickelson) won the PGA, and now here you go. The old guys still got it, kicking the young guys’ butts. We’re teaching them a lesson.”

It’s hard to imagine Castroneves not coming back next year to try and capture an unprecedented fifth career Indy 500 win. If you want to see more action from the race, check out the highlights video below.

Afterwards let us know what you thought of the race (if you watched it) on twitter at @MotorworldHype.

2021 Indy 500 Highlights

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