How Penske ended its longest drought, 20 years on
Today marks 20 years to the day since Gil de Ferran's victory at Nazareth ended a 54-race drought, the longest in the history of Team Penske. Here's how it got itself out of the mire that threatened to scupper one of Indycar's greatest teams
Team Penske is a giant of modern motorsport. A perennial contender for championships in all three US series it competes in - including the 2018 NASCAR Cup and 2019 IMSA Sportscar Championship - it has won three of the last four IndyCar Series titles, with Josef Newgarden's second championship last year extending its total to 16. Simon Pagenaud's victory at the Brickyard last year gave Roger Penske his 18th Indianapolis 500.
Even with the coronavirus crisis delaying the start of the IndyCar season until June and shrinking the number of races from 17 to its current 14, it seems inconceivable that such a storied outfit as Penske - which scored its first Indycar win with Mark Donohue at Pocono in 1971 - could end 2020 without a victory, let alone next year and the year after that.
Chip Ganassi Racing team was strong again in the Indianapolis 500, with poleman Scott Dixon and reigning champion Alex Palou leading almost three quarters of the race between them. But when dominator Dixon was penalised for pitlane speeding, ex-Formula 1 driver Marcus Ericsson stepped up to score the biggest win of his career and seize the IndyCar points lead
In an enthralling 2021 IndyCar campaign, the series bounced back from its COVID-19 truncated year prior and Alex Palou defeated both the established order and his fellow young guns to clinch a maiden title. It capped a remarkable season with plenty of standout performers
Romain Grosjean's swashbuckling rookie year in IndyCar captured the imagination of many in 2021. But another ex-Formula 1 driver whose potential was masked by five years of toil in, at best, middling machinery also enjoyed a breakout year in 2021 - winning twice and finishing sixth in points. Here's how Marcus Ericsson finally delivered on his promise
IndyCar sophomore Alex Palou stunned by overcoming team-mate Scott Dixon and the rest of a white-hot field in 2021. He was consistently fast and crucially showed a level head, rebounding well from setbacks to put himself in a near unassailable position entering the final round
Despite appearing to have an IndyCar job for life with Meyer Shank Racing, Jack Harvey’s departure and move to Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing sparked plenty of debate. However, Harvey's and RLL's combined strengths could prove to be a winning combination - if they get the balance right
Saturday 16 October marks the 10th anniversary of Dan Wheldon’s death. David Malsher-Lopez pays tribute, then asks Wheldon’s race engineer from 2011, Todd Malloy, to recall that magical second victory at the Indianapolis 500
Kyle Kirkwood, the record-setting junior formula driver, sealed the Indy Lights championship last weekend. But despite an absurdly strong junior career and scholarship money, his next move is far from clear
Newly-crowned IndyCar champion Alex Palou has been lauded as a complete driver and veteran-like in only his second season. The 24-year-old is still in the early days of his career, but the parallels are there for all to see with his six-time champion Chip Ganassi Racing team-mate who has been CGR's team leader since 2014
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Race of my life: Roger Penske on the 1994 Indianapolis 500