Rookie Alexander Rossi wins at Indy
Alexander Rossi celebrates after winning the 100th running of the Indianapolis 500 on May 29, 2016 (photo courtesy of Getty Images)
INDIANAPOLIS — Alexander Rossi wrote his name in the history books in the most amazing of ways, winning the 100th Running of the Indianapolis 500 presented by PennGrade Motor Oil.
Running dangerously close to running out of fuel after streching his 18.5 gallons of ethanol for 36 laps, Rossi all but coasted the final lap but still crossed the finish line 4.4975 seconds ahead of teammate Carlos Munoz to win the historic running of “The Greatest Spectacle in Racing.” It was the first Verizon IndyCar Series victory for the rookie in his sixth race and he is the first rookie to win the Indianapolis 500 since Helio Castroneves in 2001.
Rossi, in the No. 98 NAPA Auto Parts/Curb Honda, inherited the lead on the 197th of 200 laps on the 2.5-mile Indianapolis Motor Speedway oval when Munoz stopped for a splash of fuel. The Californian slowed his pace dramatically his final four laps. His last lap averaged 179.784 mph, nearly 40 mph slowed than Munoz’s final circuit, but he still had enough momentum to take the checkered flag.
“Unbelievable, unbelievable,” team owner Michael Andretti said. “They did a great job with strategy.”