The surest prediction for 102nd Indianapolis 500 is unpredictability. Memorial Day Weekend brings about several annual traditions such as barbecues, higher gas prices, remembrances of our fallen servicemen and women and the running of the Indianapolis 500 (12:19 p.m. ET green flag).
Before handicapping the race, there are a few storylines that make this year’s Indy 500 especially unpredictable:
Sunday’s forecast is calling for temperatures to reach 90 degrees. Only six times in 101 races has the temperature reached the 90s.
Drivers have spoken all month about how difficult it is to make an entire fuel run due to the tire wear, and with a hot and slick track on Sunday, you will likely see more pit stops than the usual six to seven. Tires will be the major determinant of fuel strategy.
Chevrolet vs. Honda
The “bowties” had a definitive power edge in qualifying by taking nine of the top 11 spots on the starting grid. However, Honda took three of the top four speeds in Friday’s final Carb Day practice session. Chevrolet has definitely made up ground on Honda’s advantage at IMS the last couple years, but I don’t foresee an advantage for either manufacturer in race trim.
So let’s try to make sense of this race and find a winner.