Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Month of May - Best Indy 500 Liveries

In this year’s “Month of May” series, on each day leading up to the Indianapolis 500 on May 26, a different topic about the race or about Indianapolis will be discussed. Each of these topics will be ranked to create special “fields of 33” regarding the Indy 500. I hope you enjoy, and I hope you learn something about Indianapolis and the Indy 500, the Greatest Spectacle in Racing.

Each year, one car sticks out above the rest. And I’m not talking about performance, but rather about paint scheme. Especially in recent years, cars have become more extravagant and fun to look at. At the same time, the traditional paint schemes that have survived the Brickyard for decades are just as desirable. So, based on the tradition of the scheme combined with just how awesome it is to see, here is the field of 33 “Best Indy 500 Liveries” in history.  

Row 11

33. Jorgensen Eagle driven by Bobby unser in 1975.

32. Penske Gould driven by four-time winner Rick Mears in his first career win.

31. Ken Paul driven in 1960 by Jim Rathmann.

Row 10

30. Bowes Seal Fast driven by A.J. Foyt in his first Indy 500 win in 1961.

29. STP Turbine driven by Parnelli Jones in 1967

28. Richard Petty Colors and the number 43 driven by John Andretti in the 2010s

Row 9

27. Watson Roadster driven by Rodger Ward in 1962

26. McAfee silver and black driven in 2012 by Sebastian Bourdais

25. Miller / Budweiser similar liveries won in back to back years (’85 for Danny Sullivan, ’86 for Bobby Rahal)

Row 8

24. Indiana Jones livery driven by Marco Andretti (who also wore an Indiana Jones style racing suit) in 2008.

23. driven by Danica Patrick and James Hinchcliffe since 2010.

22. Motorola driven by Danica Patrick in 2008 

Row 7

21. Delphi driven by Scott Sharp from 1998 to around 2003.

20. STP Oil Treatment driven by Mario Andretti in his only Indy 500 victory in 1969. 

19. Valvoline driven by Al Unser, Jr., in the closest finish in Indy 500 history.

Row 6

18. STP Oil Treatment driven by Gordon Johncock in 1982 to Victory Lane.

17. Delta Faucet purple livery driven to Victory Lane by Buddy Lazier in 1996.

16. Glidden Special driven by Arie Luyendyk  in 1995.

Row 5

15. 7/11 driven by Tony Kanaan in the early 2000s.

14. Quaker State driven by pole sitter Roberto Guerrero in 1992. Five different cars had Quaker State liveries in the 1996 Indy 500, including pole sitter Scott Brayton (and also eventual pole sitter Tony Stewart after Brayton’s tragic death in practice).

13. Olsonite Eagle driven by Dan Gurney in 1968.

Row 4

12. Penske Truck Rental driven by various drivers, similar to Al Unser’s 1987 winning car.

11. Star Utah driven by Lloyd Ruby in 1970 and 1971. The design is similar to the Watson Roadster from 1962. Can't find much of a better Memorial Day weekend car design can you?

10. Dominoes driven by Arie Luyendyk in 1990.

Row 3

9. Johnny Lightning driven by Al Unser in 1970.

8. Marmon Wasp driven to Victory Lane in the inaugural Indy 500 by Ray Harroun. Classics never die.

7. Target driven to Victory Lane by Chip Ganassi drivers Scott Dixon and Dario Franchitti. 

Row 2

6. McLaren driven by Johnny Rutherford in 1974.

5. Gilmore Racing Team driven by A.J. Foyt in 1977.

4. Lotus driven by Jim Clark in 1963.

Row 1

3. National Guard Camo driven by Dan Wheldon and J.R. Hildebrand from 2008-present.

2. Marlboro driven by Al Unser, Jr., Emerson Fittipaldi, and Helio Castroneves in the 1990s and 2000s.

1. Pennzoil driven by …well just about everybody! Johnny Rutherford, Rick Mears, Gil de Ferran, Sam Hornish, and Dan Wheldon. The Pennzoil colors have been at Indy since the early 1980s and into the new millennium.

The Field of 33 – Car Liveries

Row 1
1. Pennzoil
2. Marlboro
3. National Guard Camo
Row 2
4. Lotus
5. Gilmore Racing Team
6. McLaren
Row 3
7. Target
8. Marmon Wasp
9. Johnny Lightning
Row 4
10. Domino’s
11. Star Utah
12. Penske Truck Rental
Row 5
13. Olsonite Eagle
14. Quaker State
15. 7/11
Row 6
16. Glidden Special
17. Delta Faucet
18. STP Oil Treatment- ‘82
Row 7
19. Valvoline
20. STP Oil Treatment- ‘69
21. Delphi
Row 8
22. Motorola
24. Indiana Jones
Row 9
25. Miller / Budweiser
26. McAfee
27. Watson Roadster
Row 10
28. “The King” Colors
29. STP Turbine
30. Bowes Seal Fast
Row 11
31. Ken Paul
32. Penske Gould
33. Jorgensen Eagle

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