The official Indianapolis 500 entry list was released Sunday morning. It’s got 64 total cars, with 33 car/driver combinations – all bar 1996 Indianapolis 500 winner Buddy Lazier and rookie James Davison have a backup listed.
Lazier is one of six prior winners entered, and one of two from the 1990s with Jacques Villeneuve also on as he prepares for his first ‘500 start since that 1995 win. The other winners? Defending champion Tony Kanaan (2013), his teammate and defending series champion Scott Dixon (2008), and Roger Penske’s pair of Helio Castroneves (2001, 2002, 2009) and Juan Pablo Montoya (2000). With Dario Franchitti retired, Castroneves is the lone multiple ‘500 winner entered in this year’s race.
Davison is one of seven rookies entered. The others are full-season shoes Mikhail Aleshin, Jack Hawksworth and Carlos Huertas, the extra cars at Andretti Autosport (Kurt Busch) and A.J. Foyt Racing (Martin Plowman), and Indy Lights champion Sage Karam in the DRR Kingdom Racing Chevrolet. Andretti’s Carlos Munoz, a series rookie, is obviously not a 500 rookie after his runner-up finish in 2013.
The remaining Indy 500-only, for now, one-offs include the previously announced: Townsend Bell (KVRT), Oriol Servia (RLL, although this is race four for him this season), JR Hildebrand (Ed Carpenter Racing), Pippa Mann (Dale Coyne Racing) and Alex Tagliani (Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing).
As for a 34th car and the bumping potential, one driver exists for that role if he or she can strike a deal to add an extra car with an existing team.
Otherwise the 34th driver this year might just be E.J. Viso, who will fill-in as needed for James Hinchcliffe at Andretti’s team. Hinchcliffe was diagnosed with a concussion in yesterday’s Grand Prix of Indianapolis.