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Lazier, Hemelgarn reunite for Indy 500 entry
Ron Hemelgarn and Buddy Lazier are reuniting to compete in the 92nd Indianapolis 500. Lazier, the 1996 winner of the 500-Mile Race and the 2000 IndyCar Series champion, will drive the No. 91 Hemelgarn Johnson entry as he attempts to qualify for his 16th Indianapolis 500.
Lazier made his Indy 500 debut in 1991 and won “The Greatest Spectacle in Racing” on his fourth attempt, leading 43 laps after starting fifth. Last year, he improved three positions to finish 19th in a Sam Schmidt Motorsports car.
“I love the Indianapolis 500 and everything about the IndyCar Series,” said Lazier, who finished second in the 500 in 1998 and 2000 and fifth in 2005. “I lie awake at night because I want to be part of it. Ron has given me an opportunity to be part of it. We’ve struggled and we’ve had success together in the past. The two of us have experienced what it’s like to finish 33rd and have a horrible day, and we’ve experienced winning. It’s nice to be back together. It’s a last-minute program, but we’re going to make the best of it. I think we’ll have a strong race car and we’ll be a factor on race day.”
For Hemelgarn, this year marks the 30th year he has participated in the Indianapolis 500 as either a sponsor or team owner.
“Buddy and I go back to 1989,” Hemelgarn said. “We’ve had great success together winning races, winning a championship and winning the Indianapolis 500. We’re assembling a team again to run the 500. We’re all very excited about it. We have the same crew chief as our championship year, Lee Kunzman is still there. We’re looking forward to it. It’s an exciting time, and hopefully we’ll do well.”
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