Four Teams File Indy 500 Entries
April 3, 2007 | 5:48 P.M. EST
The 91st Indianapolis 500 is scheduled for Sunday, May 27 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Entries must be postmarked by midnight Wednesday, April 4.
Panther named Vitor Meira and Kosuke Matsuura as its drivers, while AGR named Danica Patrick, Tony Kanaan, Marco Andretti, Dario Franchitti and Michael Andretti to drive.
No driver was assigned to the fourth Vision entry, as the team filed entries March 15 for drivers Tomas Scheckter, Ed Carpenter and Anthony Foyt IV. No drivers were assigned to the two Beck entries.
Meira, a native of Brazil, will drive the No. 4 Delphi Panther Dallara/Honda/Firestone, with a backup entered. Dan Miller is the chief mechanic.
IndyCar Series standout Meira will attempt to make his fifth Indianapolis 500 start. His best start was sixth in 2006, and his best finish was second in 2005. He has completed all but one possible lap in his four previous Indy 500 starts.
Matsuura, a native of Japan, will drive the No. 55 Panasonic Dallara/Honda/Firestone, with a backup car entered. Jason Weatherford is the chief mechanic.
2004 Indy 500 Chase Rookie of the Year Matsuura will attempt to make his fourth career Indy start. His best start of seventh came last year, while his best finish of 11th came as a rookie in 2004.
Ron Catt is the team manager for Panther Racing, two-time IndyCar Series champions.
AGR’s five entries are the most by one team to date for the 91st Indianapolis 500.
Patrick, from Roscoe, Ill., will drive the No. 7 Motorola Dallara/Honda/Firestone, with a backup entered. Dave Popielarz is the chief mechanic.
It will be Patrick’s first Indy start for AGR, her new team, and her third Indianapolis 500 start overall. She electrified the sports world in 2005 by qualifying and finishing fourth and becoming the first woman to lead the Indianapolis 500 en route to Chase Rookie of the Year honors. Patrick finished eighth last year, again completing all 200 laps.
Kanaan, a native of Brazil, will drive the No. 11 Team 7-Eleven Dallara/Honda/Firestone, with a backup entered. Jeff Simon is the chief mechanic.
2005 Indianapolis 500 pole winner Kanaan will attempt to make his sixth Indy start. He has finished in the top eight each of the last four years, including a career-best second in 2004. Kanaan also has finished every possible lap during that span.
Marco Andretti, from Nazareth, Pa., will drive the No. 26 NYSE Group
Dallara/Honda/Firestone, with a backup entered. Mike Horvath is the chief mechanic.
Andretti returns to Indy for his second start after one of the most stirring rookie performances in the history of the race. He qualified ninth and finished second, losing the lead to Sam Hornish Jr. just yards before the start-finish line on the last lap and falling .0635 of a second short of victory for his famous family at Indy.
Franchitti, a native of Scotland, will drive the No. 27 Canadian Club Dallara/Honda/Firestone, with a backup entered. Jeff Grahn is the chief mechanic.
IndyCar Series standout Franchitti will attempt to make his fifth Indy start. His best start was third in 2004, with a best finish of sixth in 2005. He has completed all but three possible laps in his four career Indy starts.
Michael Andretti, from Nazareth, Pa., will drive the No. 39 Motorola/Jim Beam Dallara/Honda/Firestone, with a backup entered. Keith Badger is the chief mechanic.
The legendary Andretti will attempt to make his 16th career Indy 500 start and his second consecutive start in the same field with his son Marco. Michael Andretti’s best start was third in 1986, and his best finish was second in 1991 after a thrilling late-race duel with four-time Indy winner Rick Mears.
Andretti finished third last year at Indy, leading four laps. That bumped his career total to 430 laps led, 10th all time and first among drivers who have not won the race.
Kyle Moyer is the team manager for two-time IndyCar Series champion AGR, which won the 2005 Indianapolis 500 and series title with Dan Wheldon.
Vision Racing filed an entry for a primary and backup Dallara/Honda/Firestone. No driver or car name was assigned. Vision’s four entries trail only AGR among teams in this year’s race.
The veteran Beck Motorsports team filed entries for the No. 43 Dallara/Honda/Firestone and the No. 98 CURB Records Dallara/Honda/Firestone. Greg Robb is the team manager for Beck.