Kanaan is looking for a team for 22nd Indy 500 Start next May

Kanaan is looking for a team for 22nd Indy 500 Start next May

It’s official: Tony Kanaan plans to start his 22nd Indianapolis 500 on May 28 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

2013 “500” winner Kanaan announced that he will race in the 107th Indianapolis 500 presented by Gainbridge during an Instagram Live chat on the NTT INDYCAR SERIES Account Thursday from Hawaii, where he will compete in the Ironman World Championship triathlon this weekend.

“I’ll be there,” Kanaan said. “I will return.”

Kanaan said he is looking to stay with Chip Ganassi Racing for the 2023 Indy 500 after finishing third in a CGR entry last May, his best result since winning in 2013. He said the team’s plans for next year May have not yet been established due to the announcement last week that Ganassi driver Jimmie Johnson is stepping down from full-time NTT INDYCAR SERIES competition, with his schedule not set for 2023. Johnson indicated that the “500” may be on his limited schedule next year.

“If Jimmie isn’t in the fourth car for the ovals, then I don’t see myself there (at CGR) because Jimmie will be the fifth car, which I fully understand,” Kanaan said. “They’re not my only option. I spoke to Chip last week and said, ‘Listen, if you don’t mind, I’m going to look around. He said, “Of course.”

“He told me if it makes sense, we’re going to do it. The relationship is there.”

2004 INDYCAR SERIES Champion Kanaan has built an impressive ‘500’ record since his debut in the race in 2002. He has achieved 12 top-10 finishes in 21 starts. He also led 352 career laps, finishing 14th all-time, and led in 15 of his 21 starts, tied with Scott Dixon for the most races led in Indy 500 history.

Born in Brazil, Kanaan won the race with a then-record average speed of 187.433 in 2013, driving for KV Racing Technology. He also won pole in 2005 for Andretti Green Racing, one of his three career front row starts in the “500”.

His last full-time season in the NTT INDYCAR SERIES came in 2019, with AJ Foyt Racing. Since then, Kanaan has competed in all series oval events in 2020 for the Foyt team and 2021 with Chip Ganassi Racing. His third-place finish for CGR last May was his only series start of the season as he raced full-time in the Brazilian Stock Car Pro Series and the SRX series in America.

Kanaan is one of three Brazilians to win the Indy 500, including four-time winner Helio Castroneves and two-time winner Emerson Fittipaldi. Kanaan, who turns 48 on New Year’s Eve, would become the oldest winner in Indy 500 history with a second win.

“You can’t beat experience,” Kanaan said. “Look at the way I approached the race this year. You more or less know how the race is going to go. You know when to go. That doesn’t mean you can make it happen.

“It’s like everything: I wish I had this experience 15 years ago. But that’s not how life works. Hopefully what I’ve been doing all my life is keeping myself in shape and sharp, so when I’m older and experienced I can still use that. ”

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