IRL: Finishes of less than one second

Fantastic finishes a staple of IndyCar Series Racing INDIANAPOLIS, Monday, Sept. 8, 2003 - The drivers of the IndyCar Series proved once again that the series can claim some of the most breathtaking finishes in worldwide motorsports. The...

Fantastic finishes a staple of IndyCar Series Racing

INDIANAPOLIS, Monday, Sept. 8, 2003 - The drivers of the IndyCar Series proved once again that the series can claim some of the most breathtaking finishes in worldwide motorsports.

The Delphi Indy 300 Sept. 7 at Chicagoland Speedway featured a photo finish in which Sam Hornish Jr. defeated Scott Dixon by just .0099 of a second in the third closest IndyCar Series race in history.

Bryan Herta finished third, just .0100 of a second behind Hornish and an unbelievable .0001 behind second-place Dixon. The .0100 margin from first to third was the closest 1-2-3 finish in the series history.

In all, 35 of the 85 IndyCar Series races have had a finish of less than a second. This year, eight races have had a margin of victory of less than a second, tying the record set in 2002.

And when it comes to winning those nail-biting races, no driver has had more success than two-time IndyCar Series champion Sam Hornish Jr.

Hornish has won the top three closest finishes in IndyCar Series history. In addition to this year's Chicago race, Hornish defeated Al Unser Jr. in 2002 at Chicago by .0024 of a second, the closest finish in history.

The week after Chicago, Hornish defeated Helio Castroneves by .0096 of a second at Texas Motor Speedway in the second-closest finish in history.

Hornish has been involved in 10 of the top-16 closest finishes in history and has a record of 5-5. He won the closest finish in history as well as the, second, third, sixth and seventh closest and has finished second in the fifth, 11th, 14th, 15th and 16th closest.

"I hate to lose, so I try to win as many races as I can," Hornish said. "I can't stand it, especially when I know that I did something wrong, not to be able to win the race."

The last two races of the 2003 season take place at California Speedway (Sept. 21) and Texas Motor Speedway (Oct. 15). In addition to last year's thrilling win at Texas, Hornish also won at Texas in Oct. 2001 when he defeated Scott Sharp by .0188 of a second, the sixth closest finish in IndyCar Series history.

At California in 2002, Hornish defeated Jaques Lazier by .0281 of a second in the seventh-closest finish in IndyCar Series history.

The Toyota Indy 400 at California Speedway is Sept. 21 and will be broadcast live at 3:30 p.m. (EDT) on ABC-TV and the IMS Radio Network. For tickets, log onto www.californiaspeedway.com or call (800) 944-7223.

The season-ending Chevy 500 at Texas Motor Speedway is Oct. 12 and will be broadcast live at 3:30 p.m. (EDT) by ESPN and the IMS Radio Network. For tickets, log onto www.texasmotorspeedway or call (817) 215-8500.

<pre> 35 Finishing Margins Of Less Than One Second in IRL IndyCar Series History

        Margin  Date            Track                   (winner, runner-up)
1.      .0024   Sept. 8, 2002   Chicagoland             (Sam Hornish Jr., Al Unser Jr.)
2.      .0096   Sept. 15, 2002  Texas                   (Sam Hornish Jr., Helio Castroneves)
3.      .0099   Sept. 7, 2003   Chicagoland             (Sam Hornish Jr., Scott Dixon)
4.      .0111   June 8, 2002    Texas                   (Jeff Ward, Al Unser Jr.)
5.      .0121   July 27, 2003   Michigan                (Alex Barron, Sam Hornish Jr.)
6.      .0188   Oct. 6, 2001    Texas                   (Sam Hornish Jr., Scott Sharp)
7.      .0281   March 24, 2002  California              (Sam Hornish Jr., Jaques Lazier)
8.      .059    June 11, 2000   Texas                   (Scott Sharp, Robby McGehee)
9.      .064    Aug. 17, 1997   New Hampshire           (Robbie Buhl, Vincenzo Sospiri)
10.     .0810   June 7, 2003    Texas                   (Al Unser Jr., Tony Kanaan)
11.     .093    Aug. 11, 2002   Kentucky                (Felipe Giaffone, Sam Hornish Jr.)
12.     .120    June 27, 1999   Pikes Peak              (Greg Ray, Sam Schmidt)
13.     .140    Oct. 15, 2000   Texas                   (Scott Goodyear, Eddie Cheever Jr.)
14.     .1697   Aug. 24, 2003   Nazareth                (Helio Castroneves, Sam Hornish Jr.)
15.     .1741   July 7, 2002    Kansas                  (Airton Dare, Sam Hornish Jr.)
16.     .1976   July 8, 2001    Kansas                  (Eddie Cheever Jr., Sam Hornish Jr.)
17.     .222    June 29, 1997   Pikes Peak              (Tony Stewart, Stephan Gregoire)
18.     .2990   May 25, 2003    Indianapolis            (Gil de Ferran, Helio Castroneves)
19.     .4243   July 20, 2002   Nashville               (Alex Barron, Gil de Ferran)
20.     .445    Aug. 29, 1999   Pikes Peak              (Greg Ray, Davey Hamilton)
21.     .4969   April 21, 2002  Nazareth                (Scott Sharp, Felipe Giaffone)
22.     .570    May 29, 1997    Indianapolis            (Arie Luyendyk, Scott Goodyear)
23.     .5752   March 2, 2003   Homestead-Miami         (Scott Dixon, Gil de Ferran)
24.     .617    Sept. 26, 1999  Las Vegas               (Sam Schmidt, Kenny Brack)
25.     .689    July 19, 1998   Dover                   (Scott Sharp, Buddy Lazier)
26.     .695    May 26, 1996    Indianapolis            (Buddy Lazier, Davy Jones)
27.     .731    Aug. 1, 1999    Dover                   (Greg Ray, Buddy Lazier)
28.     .8466   Aug. 10, 2003   Gateway                 (Helio Castroneves, Tony Kanaan)
29.     .854    March 23, 1997  Phoenix                 (Jim Guthrie, Tony Stewart)
30.     .866    Jan. 27, 1996   Walt Disney World       (Buzz Calkins, Tony Stewart)
31.     .888    June 12, 1999   Texas                   (Scott Goodyear, Greg Ray)
32.     .926    Oct. 11, 1998   Las Vegas               (Arie Luyendyk, Sam Schmidt)
33.     .928    June 6, 1998    Texas                   (Billy Boat, Greg Ray)
34.     .9328   March 23, 2003  Phoenix                 (Tony Kanaan, Helio Castroneves)
35.     .944    Aug. 29, 1998   Atlanta                 (Kenny Brack, Davey Hamilton)

IRL IndyCar Series Finishing Statistics

Season: 1996 Races: 3 Caution Finish: 0 Green Finish: 3 Less Than One Second: 2 Season: 1996-97 Races: 10 Caution: Finish 2 Green Finish: 8 Less Than One Second: 4 Season: 1998 Races: 11 Caution Finish: 0 Green Finish: 11 Less Than One Second: 4 Season: 1999 Races: 10 Caution Finish: 1 Green Finish: 9 Less Than One Second: 5 Season: 2000 Races: 9 Caution Finish: 1 Green Finish: 8 Less Than One Second: 2 Season: 2001 Races: 13 Caution Finish: 1 Green Finish: 12 Less Than One Second: 2 Season: 2002 Races: 15 Caution Finish: 2 Green Finish: 13 Less Than One Second: 8 Season: 2003* Races: 14 Caution Finish: 4 Green Finish: 10 Less Than One Second: 8

*After 14 of 16 races

-irl-

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About this article
Series IndyCar
Drivers Tony Stewart , Buzz Calkins , Robby McGehee , Greg Ray , Felipe Giaffone , Eddie Cheever , Al Unser Jr. , Robbie Buhl , Buddy Lazier , Stephan Gregoire , Jeff Ward , Davey Hamilton , Scott Sharp , Arie Luyendyk , Billy Boat , Airton Daré , Jim Guthrie , Scott Goodyear , Helio Castroneves , Gil de Ferran , Jaques Lazier  , Scott Dixon , Tony Kanaan , Bryan Herta , Kenny Brack , Alex Barron , Sam Schmidt , Davy Jones , Vincenzo Sospiri , Sam Hornish Jr.