100th INDIANAPOLIS 500 COUNtDOWN
Rick Mears left his mark at Indianapolis in
three different decades, but his signature
victory came in 1991.
It was a month full of history for the
Penske driver as he clouted the IMS walls
for the first time ever and broke his foot
when the suspension failed during
practice, only 24 hours before qualifying
began. Of course, he limped into his
backup car and captured his record sixth
Indy 500 pole position the next day.
Emerson Fittipaldi and Michael
Andretti took turns controlling the pace
during the first 170 laps before Emmo
dropped out. Content to smartly stalk the
leaders up to that point, Mears then
inherited the top spot when Andretti
pitted for fuel under caution on Lap 184.
On the Lap 187 restart, Andretti drafted
Mears down the front stretch, dodged a
couple of lapped cars, then made a
bodacious outside pass going through
Turn 1 to snatch the lead. It was the late-race shootout Mears always planned for.
But, while the crowd was still buzzing,
MEARS GETS HIS SHOOTOUT
Mears returned the favor the next time
around and re-claimed command by blowing
past Michael in almost the same spot in
Turn 1 – in identical high-side fashion.
From there, the 39-year-old IMS virtuoso
held off Andretti to the finish and earned his
fourth win to tie A.J. Foyt and Al Unser.
(ABOVE) Mears poses with the Borg-Warner
Trophy for the fourth time – only the third
driver to achieve such a feat in “500” history. 75th Indianapolis 500
Rick Mears, 224.113mph
Rick Mears, 176.457mph
Second: Michael Andretti
Winning margin: 3.149sec
Lead changes: 18 among 6 drivers