Veteran Guerrero grabs late deal

Indianapolis veteran Roberto Guerrero has picked up a last-minute drive for the 2000 event in a third AJ Foyt entry

Veteran Guerrero grabs late deal

Guerrero finished second in his rookie season to race winner Rick Mears in the 1984 Indy 500, was third the following year, fourth in 1986 and was leading the race by nearly a lap in 1987. Guerrero then stalled the car on his final pit stop and by the time it refired, Al Unser was in the lead and went on to win his fourth Indianapolis 500.

Later that season, Guerrero was testing at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway when he slammed hard into the second turn wall. The driver from Colombia was in a coma for 21 days. He recovered and returned to racing, but he was never the same afterwards. He did achieve some success, such as winning the pole for the 1992 Indianapolis 500 only to spin out and crash on the backstretch on the pace lap.

Since that time, Guerrero has been a tragic figure in auto racing, but he refused to give up. He arrived at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway earlier this week without a ride, but he struck a deal with team owner A.J. Foyt late Thursday night.

Guerrero is a veteran of 15 Indianapolis 500s. He took to the track late Friday in Foyt's car, which is co-entered by Kenny Brack, the defending Indianapolis 500 winner who cannot compete in the race this year because he is a member of Team Rahal in CART. Guerrero's fastest lap was 219.227 miles per hour in a G Force/Oldsmobile Aurora.

'It was awesome,' Guerrero said. 'I was a little itchy to get back in the car but after a couple of laps it felt really comfortable like I had been here practising for three weeks. That is a credit to the set-up of the car. From the fifth lap on I was wide open. A.J. wouldn't trim it out more because he wanted me to just get some laps today. I'm on cloud nine."

Foyt will be assisted by Jeff Sinden and Joe Kennedy, who had hoped to field a car in this year's Indianapolis 500 for rookie Guy Smith but the financing for the team did not materialise.

'Roberto has always been quick here and he has a lot of laps here so when I found out he was looking for a ride, I decided to put him in my third car,' Foyt said. 'I've hired Jeff and Joe to run the car. We've worked together the past couple of years it seems and they have done a good job for me. They bring in some of their own people so it doesn't stress my regular crew who can focus on Eliseo Salazar and Jeff Ward.'

shares
comments
Ray sets pace on final practice day

Previous article

Ray sets pace on final practice day

Next article

Eddie Cheever drops brother

Eddie Cheever drops brother
Load comments
The F1 champion who became an Indy king in his second career Plus

The F1 champion who became an Indy king in his second career

Emerson Fittipaldi’s decision to go racing with his brother led to him falling out of F1, but he bloomed again on the IndyCar scene. NIGEL ROEBUCK considers a career of two halves

Formula 1
Jul 31, 2021
The lasting legacy of a fallen Indycar rookie Plus

The lasting legacy of a fallen Indycar rookie

Jeff Krosnoff was plucked out of obscurity to become a respected and highly popular professional in Japan, and then got his big break in Indycar for 1996. But a tragic accident at Toronto 25 years ago cut short a promising career and curtailed his regular team-mate Mauro Martini's passion for racing

IndyCar
Jul 14, 2021
The two key areas where Dixon needs to re-assert his authority Plus

The two key areas where Dixon needs to re-assert his authority

OPINION: Having been Chip Ganassi Racing's IndyCar focal point for the best part of a decade, Scott Dixon has been so far outgunned by new team-mate Alex Palou in 2021. After finishing behind the Spaniard at his traditional happy hunting ground at Mid-Ohio, Dixon has work to do to assume his traditional position in the team and the standings

IndyCar
Jul 6, 2021
The winners and losers of IndyCar 2021 so far Plus

The winners and losers of IndyCar 2021 so far

At the halfway point in the 2021 IndyCar Series season, we've had seven winners in eight races, spread between five teams – none of them Team Penske. In this unusual season, even by IndyCar standards, who’s excelling and who’s dragging their heels?

IndyCar
Jun 18, 2021
Castroneves: How I kept it under control to make Indy 500 history Plus

Castroneves: How I kept it under control to make Indy 500 history

Helio Castroneves’ overwhelming vivaciousness outside the cockpit belies a hardcore racer who knows how to plot his moves – and then recall it all. A day after his fourth Indy 500 win, he explained his tactics

IndyCar
Jun 2, 2021
How 'chess master' Castroneves cemented his Indy legend status Plus

How 'chess master' Castroneves cemented his Indy legend status

Helio Castroneves joined AJ Foyt, Al Unser and Rick Mears with the most Indianapolis 500 wins after edging past Alex Palou on the penultimate lap of a thrilling race that validated Michael Shank's faith in the veteran Brazilian - who is discovering that there is life after Penske after all

IndyCar
Jun 1, 2021
Indy 500 preview: Will experience or youth be victorious at the Brickyard? Plus

Indy 500 preview: Will experience or youth be victorious at the Brickyard?

A quarter of the drivers racing in the 105th edition of the Indianapolis 500 are former winners - but are they the favourites? The veteran drivers largely impressed in qualifying - but there's also a plethora of young guns looking to secure victory at IndyCar's flagship race...

IndyCar
May 27, 2021
What will it take to get American drivers in Formula 1? Plus

What will it take to get American drivers in Formula 1?

The FIA says it wants American drivers in Formula 1, but would it take an IndyCar driver to transfer or does an American need to join the European junior ladder system to get there?

Formula 1
May 19, 2021