The full entry list for this months 2019 Indianapolis 500 has been finalised. Thirty-six drivers are on the entry list, with thirty-three set to compete in the race following the conclusion of qualifying this weekend.
The entry list features a wide range of drivers from all corners of the globe, with twelve countries represented. Twenty of the drivers on the list are currently competing full-time in the NTT IndyCar Series, with a further eight competing on a part-time basis. This leaves nine drivers who are only racing in the Indianapolis 500 this season.
Of the thirty-three drivers, seven have had the honour of winning the race in the past. Helio Castroneves enters the race with the most wins of any driver, having won the race three times. He is looking to secure a fourth win to put him level with the three drivers who currently hold the record for the most Indy 500 wins. A.J. Foyt, Al Unser and Rick Mears each have four wins.
The other six former Indy 500 winners on the 2019 entry list each have one win to their name. The last three Indy 500 winners, Will Power, Takuma Sato and Alexander Rossi are all on the grid, also joined by fellow Brickyard winners, Tony Kanaan, Ryan Hunter-Reay and Scott Dixon.
Eight drivers on the entry list are classified as rookies, with six of those drivers making their Indianapolis 500 debut this year. Colton Herta, Felix Rosenqvist, Marcus Ericsson, Santino Ferrucci, Patricio O’Ward and Ben Hanley will all race in the historic event for the first time, with both Kyle Kaiser and two-time Formula 1 world champion Fernando Alonso also classified as rookies despite having each competed in the race before.
Much of the attention throughout the month of May will be on the aforementioned Alonso, who will be making his second attempt to win the Indianapolis 500 in order to complete the historic ‘triple crown’ of motorsports; the accolade of winning the Indy 500 as well as the Monaco Grand Prix and the 24 hours of Le Mans; two races that Alonso already has on his record.
Alonso will compete with McLaren Racing this month. The team are one of four outfits making their sole IndyCar appearance this year in the biggest race of them all. Clauson-Marshall Racing will make the jump up from Sprint Car dirt racing to field the sole woman in the field, Pippa Mann.
Meanwhile, Team Stange Racing announced yesterday that they would be making their IndyCar debut this month, fielding Oriol Servia in an alliance with Arrow Schmidt Peterson. Additionally, Dreyer & Reinbold Racing are once again fielding two cars on the grid, with J.R. Hildebrand and Sage Karam racing for the team that competes in the Indy 500 every year.
Thanks to Sky Sports F1‘s coverage of the full 2019 NTT IndyCar Series this year, this year’s Indianapolis 500 will likely be watched by many more British racing fans. Five British fans will attempt to qualify for the race, with Carlin‘s full-time driver Max Chilton being joined by Meyer Shank Racing‘s Jack Harvey, DragonSpeed‘s Ben Hanley, Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing‘s Jordan King and the aforementioned Pippa Mann for Clauson-Marshall Racing.
As mentioned earlier, only thirty-three drivers will take the green flag for the race in just under two weeks time. The three slowest drivers in this weekend’s two-day qualifying format will be bumped from the field. Previous Indianapolis 500 qualifying sessions have shown that nobody is safe, with the most recent example of this being when former pole-sitter James Hinchcliffe shockingly failed to qualify last year.
The first practice session for this year’s Indianapolis 500 will take place later today. Qualifying will take place this weekend from Saturday, May 18 to Sunday, May 19. A handful of further practice sessions will take place in the days after qualifying, with the race itself, the 103rd running of the Indianapolis 500, taking place on Sunday, May 26.
2019 NTT IndyCar Series – Indianapolis 500 – Entry list:
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(R) – denotes rookie.