INDIANAPOLIS – A.J. Foyt, the first driver to win the Indianapolis 500 four times, will serve as the grand marshal for the Red Bull Air Race World Championship event Oct. 6-7 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Foyt will deliver a competition command from Race Control and meet pilots from the world’s most prestigious aerial racing series, including fellow Texan Kirby Chambliss.
“I’m honored that IMS asked me to be the grand marshal for the air races,” Foyt said. “Any time I can do something at the Speedway, I’m happy to do it because I always enjoy it. I owe a lot to the Speedway – that is what made me.
“It will be my first time to see a Red Bull Air Race, which is something that I’m really looking forward to. I had planned to go last year, but something came up and I couldn’t make it. I would like to see one before I pass on. I don’t have a bucket list, but if I did, this would be on it.”
Foyt, a Houston native, is one of the greatest, most recognized drivers in motorsports history. He won the Indianapolis 500 in 1961, ’64, ’67 and ’77 as a driver and again in 1999 as a team owner with driver Kenny Brack behind the wheel.
The incomparable Foyt also holds Indianapolis 500 records for starts and consecutive starts (35), laps completed and miles completed (4,904 laps, 12,272.5 miles) and is the only driver to win the “500” in a front-engined and rear-engined car.
Foyt also set all-time IndyCar career records with 67 victories and seven series championships. He still competes in the IndyCar Series as a team owner of AJ Foyt Racing.
His versatility behind the wheel also was remarkable. Foyt is the only driver in history to win the Indianapolis 500, Daytona 500, 24 Hours of Le Mans, 24 Hours of Daytona and 12 Hours of Sebring.
“A.J. Foyt is synonymous with excellence and speed at Indianapolis, so we’re happy to welcome him to the Speedway for this weekend featuring the best pilots and aerial competition in the world,” IMS President J. Douglas Boles said. “A.J. always graciously says that IMS made him, and not the other way around, but A.J.’s passion for and success in the Indy 500 add significantly to IMS lore, and it’s always special for everyone to have him back home again in Indiana for any event.”