News & Multimedia

Sato Wins 101st Running of the Indianapolis 500 presented by PennGrade Motor Oil

Takuma Sato finished a brave pass of Helio Castroneves with five laps remaining Sunday to cap a day of drama with a victory in the 101st Indianapolis 500 presented by PennGrade Motor Oil.

Sato, from Tokyo, held off three-time Indianapolis 500 winner Castroneves by .2011 of a second in the No. 26 Andretti Autosport Honda to become the first Japanese driver to win “The Greatest Spectacle in Racing.”

View Race Results | View Box Score

“Unbelievable feeling,” Sato said. “I cannot thank this whole team enough. Fantastic.

“It was obviously a tough, tough race. But Helio really drives fair. I can trust him. I can really trust him coming from the outside.”

The victory provided a measure of redemption for Verizon IndyCar Series veteran Sato, whose previous best Indianapolis 500 finish was 13th in 2013 and 2015. He dueled side by side with Dario Franchitti for victory on the final lap in 2012 before crashing in Turn 1 and ending up 17th.

“This time I was pointing in the right direction, wasn’t I?” Sato said. “It’s beautiful. I dreamed of something like this. I can’t thank everyone enough for their support.”

Rookie Ed Jones finished third in the No. 19 Boy Scouts of America Honda, his best Verizon IndyCar Series finish.

Castroneves fell just short of joining A.J. Foyt, Al Unser and Rick Mears as the only four-time winners of the “500.” It was incredible he even contended after starting a career-low 18th and suffering damage in an early incident.

On Lap 53, Jay Howard hit the SAFER Barrier in the outside of Turn 2 and caromed back on the 2.5-mile oval in his No. 77 Lucas Oil/Team One Cure Honda. Pole sitter Scott Dixon had nowhere to go and hit Howard’s car, launching into the air and hitting the catch fence hard, inflicting heavy damage to his No. 9 Camping World Honda. The accident caused a 19-minute red flag for wall repair and track cleaning. Dixon and Howard were unhurt.

Castroneves just avoided the melee but clipped the inside SAFER Barrier, damaging his front and rear wing. He was forced to the pits for a new nosecone.

On the ensuing restart, Castroneves jumped the start and was penalized with a drive-through penalty.

Yet savvy pit strategy by Team Penske and a strong No. 3 Shell Fuel Rewards Team Penske Chevrolet after the repairs helped Castroneves jump to the lead from Lap 96 to Lap 103, and he remained a contender for the rest of the 200-lap race.

2014 race winner Ryan Hunter-Reay took the lead in the No. 28 DHL Honda on Lap 104 when Castroneves pitted. He was one of four Andretti Autosport drivers out front today, as Hunter-Reay, rookie Fernando Alonso, Sato and 2016 winner Alexander Rossi combined to lead 95 laps.

Another powerhouse Honda team, Chip Ganassi Racing, appeared late in the race to have a good chance at its first victory since Franchitti’s triumph in 2012. Max Chilton took the lead on Lap 169 after the last round of pit stops for nearly every driver in the 33-car field.

Chilton stayed out front in the No. 8 Gallagher Honda and kept the lead on the final restart of the race, on Lap 189 after a five-car crash in Turn 2 involving Josef Newgarden, James Hinchcliffe, Will Power, Oriol Servia and James Davison.

Sato drove side by side with Chilton in Turn 1 to try to gain the lead on Lap 191, but Chilton parried the move.

Then it was the relentless Castroneves’ turn. He hunted down Chilton and passed him with a bold outside move in Turn 3 on Lap 194.

Meanwhile, Sato passed Chilton for second on the same lap and then zeroed in on Castroneves to make his decisive pass on the next lap.

“Me and Helio went side by side,” Sato said. You’ve got to go for it, run it flat. And we did it, and we pulled away.”

Castroneves looked outside of Sato for the lead in Turn 1 on Lap 199, but he never had enough momentum to challenge over the final two laps.

“I really wanted to get the fourth (win) for everyone,” Castroneves said. “Don’t get me wrong: I tried. Unfortunately, it was just a little bit short.

“Congrats to Taku-san. He did a phenomenal race. He bumped me a couple of times. I was like, ‘Man, this guy was not breakable.’ I really thought we had it. Even when I tried, now my car is going to get momentum again. But unfortunately, I couldn’t do it. I’ll tell you what: I think I bent the throttle so hard. But great team effort.”

Heralded rookie Alonso, a two-time Formula One World Champion, finished 24th after smoke trailed from his No. 29 McLaren-Honda-Andretti Honda while running seventh on Lap 180. Alonso led four times for 27 laps.

Show More Show Less
Now Viewing
Takuma Sato
 
Sato Wins 101st Running of the Indianapolis 500 presented by PennGrade Motor Oil
Takuma Sato used a brave outside pass of Helio Castroneves with five laps remaining Sunday to cap a day of drama with a victory in the 101st Indianapolis 500 presented by PennGrade Motor Oil. Sato, from Tokyo, held off three-time Indianapolis 500 winner Castroneves by .2011 of a second in the No. 26 Andretti Autosport Honda to become the first Japanese driver to win “The Greatest Spectacle in Racing.”
Read More
Related Media
Takuma Sato
 
Sato Humbled By Hero's Welcome in Japan
Sato, the 40-year-old driver of the No. 26 Andretti Autosport Honda, has been living a whirlwind life since becoming the first Japanese driver to win “The Greatest Spectacle in Racing” on May 28. Following the Indianapolis 500 Championship Celebration on May 29, he left on a U.S. media tour for New York and Texas, then went straight to the doubleheader race weekend at Detroit’s Belle Isle. A few days later, it was on to Texas Motor Speedway.
Read More
Graham Rahal
 
Rahal Sweeps Detroit Double Header
After winning the opening race of the Verizon IndyCar Series doubleheader weekend front the pole position on Saturday, Rahal started third today in the No. 15 SoldierStrong / TurnsForTroops.com Honda. Rahal led 40 laps and beat Josef Newgarden to the checkered flag by 1.1772 seconds to claim his sixth career Indy car victory and the 25th for Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing.
Read More
Takuma Sato
 
Sato Earns $2.45 Million for Winning 101st Indianapolis 500
Takuma Sato earned $2,458,129 from an overall purse of $13,178,359 for his victory Sunday in the 101st Running of the Indianapolis 500 presented by PennGrade Motor Oil at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Read More
Michael Andretti
 
Andretti Reaps Indy 500 Rewards as Team Owner
Not a day goes by that Indianapolis Motor Speedway doesn’t remind Michael Andretti that he didn’t win the Indianapolis 500 as a driver. Lately, though, rarely a year goes by that IMS doesn’t reward him as a car owner.
Read More
Fernando Alonso
 
Alonso's Bid For Second Leg of Triple Crown Falls 20 Laps Short
Fernando Alonso’s attempt to win the 101st Indianapolis 500 presented by PennGrade Motor Oil went up in a puff of blue smoke today late in the 200-lap race. That’s when the promising run ended in his No. 29 McLaren-Honda-Andretti Honda after the Spaniard led 27 laps – the third-highest total of the day – and was in contention for the lead through much of the race.
Read More
Items 1 - 5 of 1,460
Reserve one of our hospitality suites for your next event!
To start planning your event at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway please fill out our Information Request Form or contact IMS Sales Department at (317) 492-8739 or email at hospitalitysales@brickyard.com.
Latest Tweets
It's Pole day on @CrownRoyal Armed Forces Weekend & we can't wait to see you! Check out details on the day: https://t.co/yKQ6Db3YRK
May 21