Franchitti Set For Landmark Start

Dario Franchitti has been forced into retirement as a result of injuries sustained in an IndyCar crash in October in Houston, Texas.
Dario Franchitti will make his landmark 250th career IZOD IndyCar Series start this weekend in Long Beach, Calif.

LONG BEACH, Calif. – Dario Franchitti has already overtaken Bobby Rahal and Gordon Johncock on the all-time Indy car victory list. Before the end of the 2013 IZOD IndyCar Series season, he will pass them for most career starts, too.

The April 21 Toyota Grand Prix of Long Beach will mark Franchitti’s 250th Indy car start – a fact that the 39-year-old driver found somewhat humbling and “amazing.”

Franchitti has amassed 31 victories (including three Indianapolis 500 wins), 29 runner-up finishes, 112 top-five finishes and 29 pole starts – all amongst the top 10 on all-time lists – in an Indy car career that began on March 2, 1997, in a CART race at Homestead-Miami Speedway. He started 13th and finished 25th in a Hogan Racing car.

He has finished in the top 10 in more than half the races over the 15-plus seasons of competition. Such stellar statistics have enabled Franchitti to pick up four IZOD IndyCar Series championships along the way.

“It’s been a long time but it’s not just about being here, it’s being here and trying to be competitive,” Franchitti said. “If I continue to be competitive, I’ll be happy. The drive to continue is one thing, but it’s also being realistic about being competitive. Right now, we’re still able to do that.”