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Rocky C
11-20-15, 07:11 PM
The title says it all. Great idea Mitch !

Gary W ???

Rocky C
11-20-15, 07:41 PM
Click to enlarge !


MARINES !!!




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29247

Kegler300
11-20-15, 07:48 PM
http://itmakessenseblog.com/files/2013/10/Marines-550x375.jpg

irpat54
11-20-15, 08:06 PM
I love NASCAR,, so exciting... "he's making a left turn!!"..... "he's making another left turn!!".... lol just kidding..

Kegler300
11-20-15, 08:12 PM
And yet, leftists hate NASCAR ...

FistFu68
11-20-15, 09:17 PM
Man those Cars are TiT's I'm kinda partial 2 that Scarlet & Black 1...SWEET

Gary W
11-21-15, 10:03 AM
Well guys, after spending 20 years in NASCAR and seeing what it has evolved into today, you are right I do have some thoughts. My first 10 years in the sport working with Richard, Kyle and Adam Petty for our client International Truck and Engine were amazing. It was from 1991-2000 and the sport was growing in fan attendance, television viewership, and there was no looking back. Working with the Petty's was a time period I will never forget. During that time period, Richard had a lot of drivers in the 43, however who drove the car did not matter, all the fans cared about was "The King" and everywhere we went there were people waiting for his autograph. And the amazing thing about Richard Petty is that he understood that without the fans, there would be no NASCAR, no Petty wins, no celebrity. He knew who he was and how he got there, unfortunately not everyone that followed him shared that understanding.
In 2001 Petty Enterprises switched to Dodge and their sister company was Freightliner so our business relationship ended. He still remains a good friend that I do not see very often however when we do get together, its like I had seen him just a week or two earlier. Expected to be done with NASCAR at that time and shortly after, Ronnie Russell who I worked with at Petty and had left, called me to come to Charlotte and meet Sam Rensi. Sam and his brother Ed owned Team Rensi Motorsports, a small Busch series team. Ed was the president and CEO of McDonalds, Sam the VP of manufacturing at Remington firearms and both retired and started the team. I went there ( I thought ) to talk about helping them find sponsorship, and left Charlotte that day owning a part of Team Rensi Motorsports. It was quite a day. I guess I'll stop here for now, this is Chapter I of a two Chapter racing career, each chapter 10 years in length. More on Chapter 2 in another post. Regarding NASCAR today, to say it is broken would be an understatement in my opinion. The sanctioning body has ruined the sport. Teams are going out of business daily, the racing product is over regulated, its to expensive to attend a race, drivers do not reflect the population of the country, and from a marketing perspective as a marketing guy, sponsors no longer can obtain the value for the money spent to promote their product or service. OK< enough for this Saturday morning. I'll do Chapter 2 shortly. Would love to hear what you all think about the sport. G

Rocky C
11-21-15, 10:09 AM
Hahahahahahaha. Morning Brothers, Wow, did this thread take off in one day.

Thank you Gary, this is going to be great !!!

Gary W
11-21-15, 10:15 AM
BTW, I am going to start adding tons of pictures to the "Gallery" ( over time, not all at once ) from my time with Team Marines and with Richard Petty. Keep an eye out for them.
:)

Rocky C
11-22-15, 10:02 AM
Race today !!! :)

Gary W
11-22-15, 08:39 PM
According to "people in the know" at the time, Kyle had the ability to drive a race car. No one thought he had the talent of his father or grandfather, but the ability to compete. I do not think anyone in or around the Petty family thought he was going to win a championship.
Being the third generation behind Lee and Richard was pretty hard to live up to. He never had a chance with that last name.
Adam on the other hand was his grandfather in a younger form. Watching him engage Richard about driving, the responsibilities of being a driver, being a Petty was amazing to watch. He had the natural talent and he knew what kind of emotional and physical effort it was going to take and never let up. I knew him well and was devastated by his death. Personally, I do not think the family ever truly recovered from his accident. The Camp helped, but Adam had grown up into a special young man and could not be replaced.
G

Gary W
11-22-15, 08:43 PM
Agree completely. Rocky C and all of you Marines are the "main attraction" and what the website content, Facebook page, and the forum's are there for. It has always been and will always be about Marines who have served, those who are serving and those who will serve.
G

Rocky C
11-23-15, 10:13 AM
HOMESTEAD, Fla. — After Kyle Busch’s leg snapped in half in a February crash, there were a few moments of fear that he might never race again.

His right leg and left foot badly broken on the day before the Daytona 500, Busch’s immediate concern was learning how to walk again rather than getting back into a car.

Making NASCAR’s Chase for the Sprint Cup? Unthinkable, as Busch figured to be out until at least July. Winning his first career title? The kind of comeback only Disney could imagine.

But that’s exactly what happened Sunday at Homestead-Miami Speedway, with Busch pulling off another unlikely victory in the Ford EcoBoost 400 — his fifth of the season — to clinch his first career championship.

“I don’t know if I quite understand life yet,” an emotional Busch said on the team radio, “but there’s something to be said about this year.”

You’ll have to forgive Busch if he has trouble making sense of everything that happened in 2015. It seems too far-fetched to believe.

It’s a shame ESPN left the sport after last season, because Busch’s unbelievable comeback would make a great 30 for 30 documentary.

“I don't know that anybody could have ever dreamt of this year,” Busch said. “… As bad as it was, I wouldn't recommend it if you're looking to achieve a championship this way. It's certainly not easy, but it'll make you mentally stronger and physically stronger.”

Busch’s story is how an aggressive, brash driver toned down his act and matured into a husband, father and — now — Cup champion. It’s about countless hours of agonizing work behind the scenes to get him back on his feet again after the Daytona crash, after which he spent weeks in a hospital bed that was wheeled onto the first floor of his North Carolina home.

Busch would stare out the window at the birds and watch races on TV, thinking about all he was missing. It took him two and a half hours the first time he tried to take a shower after his injury (and that was with help). At one point, he turned to his wife while watching a race and asked for help bending his toe — he couldn’t move it himself.

Still, a long road lay ahead of him. Not only would he have to win a race – no easy task even for a healthy driver – but he’d have to get back into the top 30 of the Cup standings in order to earn a playoff spot.

It didn’t look good at first, but much like in the aftermath of his crash, Busch rallied. A summer hot streak saw him win three straight races and four out of five – including the biggest win of his career at the Brickyard 400.

The desire to get back drove him to give maximum effort on his physical therapy, and he stunned the NASCAR world by announcing a return to the Sprint Cup Series in mid-May — sooner than anyone expected.

“This wasn’t a vacation for us,” wife Samantha told USA TODAY Sports. “He wasn’t sitting there just like, ‘Oh, I’m going to stay at home and have a margarita on the beach.’ He was learning to walk again. He worked his butt off. His physical therapist would leave and he’d be like, ‘Ok, get my (stretching) bands, we’re going to do more. I gotta get back early.”

Still, a long road was ahead. Not only would he have to win a race — no easy task for a healthy driver — but he’d also have to get back into the top 30 of the Cup standings to earn a playoff spot.

Samantha was so nervous watching her husband she nearly got sick to her stomach.

“With 30 (laps) to go, I was like, ‘I’m going to throw up,’” she said. “Last year at this race, I was throwing up because I was pregnant. Now I’m going to throw up because I’m nervous.”

And when a debris caution suddenly showed up with 10 laps to go? “I wasn’t even breathing,” she said.

His victory negated a fairy-tale finish for Jeff Gordon, who was seeking his fifth NASCAR championship in his final race as a full-timer. Gordon finished sixth. Kevin Harvick made a run at Busch but settled for second. Martin Truex Jr., the fourth driver in the Chase finale, was 12th.

And in the end, Busch was in victory lane. He held the Sprint Cup trophy aloft, then looked down and shook his head, smiling to himself. His childhood hero, Gordon, arrived to congratulate him.

“His talent is so strong,” Gordon said. “What he went through this year, I see a changed Kyle. When he came back, not only was he driven and inspired, but you could tell he was racing smarter, with more patience. ... There was a pretty good chance he was destined to win this championship.”

Destiny? Perhaps. Busch was lucky to be alive in February, and no one expected anything out of him after that. This year wouldn’t have figured to be the year.

But NASCAR’s Charlie Brown finally got to kick the football, outrunning the bad luck that plagued him in the past.

“Nothing bigger in sports has ever happened to me,” said team owner Joe Gibbs, whose three Super Bowl wins are nothing to sniff at.

And so it came to be that despite missing 11 races, Busch is the champion of NASCAR — and at age 30, he might only just be getting started.

“He’s got that internal strength,” his brother, Kurt Busch, told USA TODAY Sports, his voice cracking. “That’s something my dad instilled in both of us. Nobody is ever going to do it unless you go out and do it. He just went out there and did it.

“I’m so very proud of him. Kyle’s always been a champion in my mind. To experience this with him and to welcome him to the champion’s club is something I’ve always wanted to do”

Rocky C
12-01-15, 11:00 AM
Tragic indeed.....

Rocky C
12-10-15, 10:57 AM
Good Morning Marines.

Getting ready to move our offices and while packing I found a box of 1/64th die cast cars from the Team Marines Racing Team. In the spirit of the holidays and of course "Fun", I am going to send one of these to the first 50 of you that can answer the following Team Marines Racing question.

Name the cities/race tracks Team Marines Racing won races at ?.

The first 50 PM's to me with the proper answer will get the car!

Good luck!

Gary W

http://www.leatherneck.com/forums/member.php?656-Gary-W

Gary W
12-10-15, 09:55 PM
Hi there, sorry for the delay in responding.

I am not sure about the sidewall issue however I have access to all my old team members on FB and one of them can get me that answer so I will ask.

Regarding the cost, in the Busch ( Nationwide ) series, a set of tires was $2,400.00 and we went thru about 5 sets on average per race. It was a lot of money when we were just running the 25, it was double that when we started running the 35 as well.
In Cup, the tires pre the "next generation" race car were about $700.00 a set more than ours. Not sure how much Cup tires are now, I will ask that question as well.
I just texted my old team manager about the tire question. Ill get back to you.
S/F
Gary

Rocky C
12-11-15, 02:25 PM
** Update **

You now only have to answer where one of the races were won.

**Hint **

One of the races was won near where Gary W lives.


This is from Leatherneck COO Gray W.


Good Morning Marines.

Getting ready to move our offices and while packing I found a box of 1/64th die cast cars from the Team Marines Racing Team. In the spirit of the holidays and of course "Fun", I am going to send one of these to the first 50 of you that can answer the following Team Marines Racing question.

Name the cities/race tracks Team Marines Racing won races at ?.

The first 50 PM's to me with the proper answer will get the car!

Good luck!

Gary W

http://www.leatherneck.com/forums/member.php?656-Gary-W

Gary W
12-13-15, 05:28 PM
Happy to report that we have the first five winners of the Team Marines Racing 1/64th die cast. As I indicated in the responses, once we complete our office move between Xmas and new years, I'll start sending them out.
Happy Holidays to everyone!
S/F

Gary

Rocky C
12-13-15, 08:06 PM
Let's get those PM's in everyone !!!

Gary W
01-10-16, 08:38 PM
To all those that won 1/64th die cast in out little contest in December, I am happy to report that my move is complete, the box with the race cars has been found and I will start sending them out this week.
Also, for you NASCAR fans, the 2016 Sprint Cup season opening race at Daytona is February 21st. Based on the performance of last years teams at Daytona and Talladega, who do you think will win the Daytona 500 this year? Curious who you think will win and why.
All the best!

GaryW

Gary W
01-10-16, 09:12 PM
29425

During one of our base visits, we had the chance to pull the car out on to the flight line and get this shot.
Pretty cool!

Rocky C
01-11-16, 08:20 AM
Awesome Picture !!!

Gary W
01-25-16, 09:16 AM
294942949529496
Promised I would share some photo's from the Team Marines Racing archives with NASCAR fans on Leatherneck.com. Attached are a few of the team photos where Marines were on hand to "hang" with the team.
GaryW

Gary W
01-25-16, 09:21 AM
294972949829499
Here are a couple more from our "dream" season where we won 4 races. Would have won the championship if Greg Biffle did not wreck us at Kansas. Pictured here a photo's from our win at Memphis, Kentucky and Chicago. The Chicago win was pretty special, Ed Rensi and I live here ( two of the three team owners ) and we led 99% of the laps. It was quite a day.
GaryW

Rocky C
01-25-16, 10:56 AM
Wow, awesome pictures Gary !!! :thumbup:

Gary W
02-11-16, 08:00 AM
Good morning!

I have been watching the most recent coverage of the two "big" NASCAR issues of the day, the first bring the start of the 2016 season this weekend in Daytona ( the 500 is a week from Sunday ) and the second and most significant issue is the new Charter System for owners.
As a previous NASCAR owner, the issue was the only way to make money in NASCAR was to have more sponsorship/winnings than expense. And while this pure business profit/loss model worked for those with the best team/drivers/sponsors, it failed teams that performed anywhere from the middle of the pack down in Cup, anywhere beyond 10th place in Nationwide, and any team but the first place team in the Truck Series. The sponsorship income and weekly race winnings just did not cover the rising cost of running a full season in any of the three top NASCAR series.
That changes with the Charter System. Now, owners have something that will grow in value just by having it. There will be a finite number of charters so if you want to "play" and be guaranteed a starting position each week for your sponsor, these charters will have significant value for owners, something that is long overdue.

Rocky C
02-11-16, 09:02 AM
Morning Gary. Long overdue is right ! Great Post !

Rocky C
02-21-16, 10:30 AM
Daytona 500 comes to the airways to wave the start flag on the NASCAR season.

Drivers, start your engines as Daytona 500 kicks off the 2016 NASCAR season and the Chase for the Cup. The Sprint Unlimited is over and the CAN-AM Duel helped set the 40-car field participating in the Sprint Cup’s first race of the year.

Two NASCAR legends, Jeff Gordan and Tony Stewart, are out of the field, leaving the race wide open for someone to come away victorious with the win in the Super Bowl of NASCAR. However, Gordan’s first-hand experience and time spent driving in multiple Daytona 500’s and other races will be called upon often as part of the FOX broadcast team.

The coverage begins on FOX at 1:00 p.m. EST as another NASCAR season gets underway. Every driver is in the same place with zero points in the Chase. It’s a fresh slate for every team who are all looking to improve upon their 2015 season’s looking to come away victorious with the Sprint Cup once November is over.

Joey Logano won the 2015 Daytona 500 and looks to repeat in 2016. Find out all the information related to Sunday’s Daytona 500 on FOX below. The big race will also be streamed for those who are not in front of their television on race day for the marathon in terms of NASCAR races.


Date: Sunday, February 21, 2016
Time: 1:00 p.m. ET
Location: Daytona Beach, Florida
Track: Daytona International Speedway
Television: FOX
Live Stream: FOX Sports GO

Rocky C
02-21-16, 07:17 PM
Hamlin edges out Truex Jr. in closest Daytona 500 ever


With a Hail Mary move, Denny Hamlin ended Joe Gibbs' 23-year drought at the Daytona 500.


Hamlin pulled out of line with a lap to go Sunday to make a run at his first Daytona 500 victory. He chased down teammate Matt Kenseth, staved off Kenseth's block, and wedged between Kenseth and Martin Truex Jr.


Hamlin stayed in the gas for a door-to-door dash to the checkered flag that ended in a photo finish with Truex. He beat Truex by 0.010 seconds, the closest finish in the history of the race.

"I don't know where that came from, I don't know what happened, I can't even figure out what I did," Hamlin said. "It all just came together. But this wouldn't be possible if it wasn't for Toyotas sticking together all race long."

It also was Toyota's first Daytona 500 victory. Gibbs, who in November celebrated with Kyle Busch the team's first Sprint Cup title in a decade, won the race for the first time since Dale Jarrett in 1993.

Gibbs had made it clear that he had no use for the victories his drivers collected in the exhibition races leading into Sunday's season-opener -- Hamlin and Busch each won one race in the buildup to the opener. But the three-time Super Bowl winning coach was focused only on the "Great American Race" and his four drivers brainstormed on the best way to get a win for Gibbs.

Hamlin, Kenseth, Busch and Carl Edwards stuck close together for most of the race, and they got assistance from Martin Truex Jr., who became a de facto JGR teammate this year when Furniture Row Racing moved to Toyota.

Kenseth was out front and leading Truex until the final lap when Hamlin finally jumped out of line to make his attempt at the win. Starting a second line on the outside, Hamlin got a push from Kevin Harvick that allowed him to catch Kenseth. Kenseth tried to throw a block but Hamlin wedged into the middle between Kenseth and Truex, and Kenseth had to save his car from wrecking.

"The last thing I wanted to do was wreck off turn four with my Toyota teammates and none of us win," Hamlin said. "We had talked about a plan overnight to just work together, work together and I've never seen it executed so flawlessly.

"I said with two to go that we have to get the team victory no matter what it takes and I essentially was trying to go up there and block (Harvick) to keep him from getting to those guys."

But the push from Harvick was so strong, Hamlin was able to race for the win.

Truex, who spun the loss as a positive in that he proved to JGR that he and Furniture Row Racing will be strong partners, wasn't sure what he could have done differently.

"It hurts a little bit," Truex said. "I think the only thing I should have done different was been a little more aggressive coming to the line, holding Denny up the race track. That last split second when he pulled off my door, that was it. It gave him that couple inches to beat me to the line.

"It's hard to make those decisions. Live and learn. I think if I get in that position again, I'll do it a little bit differently."

Toyotas swept the podium as Truex was second, and Busch third. Carl Edwards was fifth as Toyota took four of the top five spots. It comes three months after Busch gave Toyota its first championship.

"This was our 10th try at the Daytona 500," said David Wilson, president of Toyota Racing Development, who called the win the biggest in Toyota history -- trumping even the 2003 Indianapolis 500 victory.

"When we came into the sport, we struggled. We were not ready. We didn't know. And so it's taken time for us to collectively build an organization of winning races and competing for championships."

Busch felt it was clear in the closing laps that a Toyota was likely going to win, but waited too long to make his move.

"I figured it was five to go that it was every man for himself," Busch said. "Once Denny jumped up, he just got such a huge boost from (Harvick). Once he did it, I swore I thought about doing it. Once I thought about doing it and didn't do it, it was too late. That was it. You can't think that long and not make the move at the same time."

Kenseth faded to 14th.

"They don't get much more crushing than that," Kenseth said. "If I can't win, I want my teammate to win. There's a million things you could do differently, but I did what I thought I should do at the time to try to win. We finished terrible, but that was the move I thought I had to make to try to preserve the win."

Dale Earnhardt Jr., seeking his third Daytona 500 victory, came up empty as he tried to force his way through the field late in the race.

Earnhardt was using the high line to inch closer to the front, and when he tried to get a side draft from another car, he spun through the fourth turn. His Chevrolet hit an interior wall and then ricocheted into the grass, where Earnhardt found himself stuck.

Earnhardt was a heavy favorite to win and brought a car nicknamed "Amelia Earhart" that had appeared to be unbeatable. Amelia won four races -- including a qualifier at Daytona earlier this week -- and never finished lower than third in seven starts over the past year.

"Caught me by surprise there," Earnhardt said. "We were making some ground on the leaders a little bit so that was looking pretty good because the outside line really hadn't been doing anything all day. Just busted my butt there. Driver mistake."

Gary W
02-23-16, 03:23 PM
It's funny, I swore I was not going to watch the race. The last few years races were so boring I fell asleep during them all. This year, that last few laps and the DH win, along with an amazing "team" strategy and execution by Joe Gibb Racing made watching the race pretty exciting. If NASCAR can get close to this level of excitement at other races/tracks this season, they might start pulling fans back in. Will wait and see!
GaryW

Rocky C
02-23-16, 04:28 PM
Quote Originally Posted by Gary W in Morning Formation.

Rocky, I think in honor of the outstanding finish in Sunday's Daytona 500, tomorrow I am going to dig into the GW NASCAR memorabilia locker and find something special to raffle off on the Forums. Maybe this time we will do an autographed Richard Petty item.

I'll see what I can find!
Gary W

-------------------------------------------------

NICE !!! Thank you Gary, sounds great.

Rocky C
04-10-16, 09:14 AM
FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) -- Kyle Busch took the lead after the final restart Saturday night at Texas to complete his second NASCAR weekend sweep in a row.

Busch ended Jimmie Johnson's three-race winning streak at Texas, getting his 36th Sprint Cup victory a week after also winning at Martinsville. Busch also won the Xfinity race at Texas on Friday night, his 80th win in that series that was coming off a two-week break. At Martinsville, he also got his 45th Camping World Truck Series victory. That's four consecutive NASCAR Series wins in a span of eight days.

"It's pretty darn good, I'll tell you that," Busch said when asked what it's like to be him right now. "I've got a great wife, a great son and I'm having a blast, living the dream." On the first lap after the final restart, lap 302 of 334,

Busch went on the outside of Turn 4 to shoot around Martin Truex Jr. for the lead. Busch led the rest of the way in his No. 18 Joe Gibbs Racing Toyota, winning by nearly 4 seconds over Dale Earnhardt Jr. with Joey Logano third. "The restart was going to be key. If I could just get out in front of him, I knew I could protect the rest of the race," Busch said.

"They had a good restart, but we got a better one."

It was Busch's second Sprint Cup victory at Texas, where in 2013 he also swept both spring races at the high-banked, 1 1/2-mile track. NASCAR's first night race of the season actually went into the next morning, ending a few minutes after midnight

Texas time after the start was delayed for 1 hour, 50 minutes while drying the track after a couple of light rain showers during the afternoon. Johnson, who had won five of the previous seven Texas races, finished fourth.

When the Sprint Cup Series returns to Texas in November, he will be trying to win the fall race there for the fifth year in a row. Chase Elliott, the rookie teammate of Earnhardt and Johnson at Hendrick Motorsports, finished fifth.

Elliott has qualified fourth, but had to start at the back of the 40-car field after a transmission change in the No. 24 Chevrolet. The four Hendrick drivers finished in the top eight, with Kasey Kahne eighth.

All four Gibbs drivers finished in the top 12, with polesitter Carl Edwards seventh, Matt Kenseth 11th and Denny Hamlin 12th. Edwards led 124 laps and was running second on a restart with 113 laps to go after pitting during a caution.

Within a few laps after that, he had to go back in the pits because of a loose front right wheel and dropped all the way to 19th. He has won three Cup races at Texas, the last when sweeping the 2008 races.

Truex led six times for 141 laps. The last restart followed an incident that involved 13 cars on the backstretch. Austin Dillon, on older tires, got loose with 40 laps to go when Hamlin came under him going on the backstretch.

Johnson was coming up behind him and tried to avoid contact before tapping into the back of Dillon's No. 3 that then spun. Truex, who was not involved in the incident, and Dillon had stayed on the track running first and second when everyone else pitted during a caution five laps earlier.

Rocky C
04-23-16, 12:35 PM
4-23-2016 <br />
<br />
NASCAR stumbles again, looks more and more clueless <br />
<br />
<br />
By PAUL NEWBERRY <br />
<br />
18 hrs ago

Rocky C
05-29-16, 12:10 PM
May 29th, 2016

The 100th running of the Indianapolis 500 today.

Good Luck and be Safe to all.

Rocky C
05-29-16, 05:42 PM
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) -- An unfamiliar driver, an American no less, ushered in a new era at Indianapolis Motor Speedway by outlasting his faster rivals -- and his fuel tank.

Alexander Rossi was the stunning winner of the historic 100th running of "The Greatest Spectacle In Racing" on Sunday in a victory that allowed the long-suffering Andretti family to celebrate in the biggest race of their famed careers.

Rossi was a 66-to-1 long shot and certainly not the driver anyone would have picked to win. But the 24-year-old Californian used fuel strategy to outsmart a handful of drivers who had the most dominant cars in the race.

Rossi stretched his final tank of gas 90 miles to cycle into the lead as others had to duck into the pits for a splash of fuel in the waning laps. He ran out of gas after taking the checkered flag and his Honda had to be towed to the victory celebration.

"I have no idea how we pulled that off," Rossi said. "It's an amazing result for Andretti Autosport."

Rossi didn't have the speed of Carlos Munoz, who was charging hard over the final 50 miles. But Munoz also had to stop for gas and didn't have a chance to race his teammate for the victory -- even though Rossi was running on fumes and completed the final lap at a snail's pace of 179.784 mph.

The Colombian settled for second in a 1-2 finish for Andretti Autosport. He seemed devastated after, particularly since it is his second runner-up finish in four years.

"For half a lap short of fuel ... ," he said. "I will win the 500 one day."

Munoz has contended at Indy before and he's proven to be fast at the speedway.

Rossi? Well, not many know much about him at all.

He's an IndyCar rookie who has chased a ride in Formula One his entire career. Stuck without a ride, he made the decision to return to the United States to race and became the ninth rookie to win the 500 and the first since Helio Castroneves in 2001.

Rossi understood full well that it was strategy that got him this win.

"I'll cherish the fact that at one point we were 33rd," Rossi said. "We rolled the dice and came through and made it happen. This is unbelievable. I have no doubt it's going to change my life."

Although he's a relief driver for Manor Racing in F1, Rossi has no scheduled F1 races and IndyCar right now is his top commitment. He was lured back to America this year to drive for Bryan Herta in a partnership with Andretti Autosport. Herta was the winning car owner in 2011 with Dan Wheldon, the actual 100th anniversary of the first race in 1911, and now can claim a win in the 100th actual race.

This Herta effort relied heavily on its alliance with Andretti, and the family was hoping Marco Andretti would give them their first Indy 500 title since patriarch Mario Andretti won in 1969.

Instead, Marco Andretti never contended on a day at least three of his teammates were clearly among the best in the field. Ryan Hunter-Reay and Townsend Bell combined to lead 64 of the first 119 laps, but the Americans were knocked from contention when Bell clipped Castroneves as he left pit road. The contact caused Bell to crash into Hunter-Reay.

Even with those two eliminated from contention, Rossi still wasn't a factor in this race.

As the laps wound down, it clearly became a fuel mileage race and American Josef Newgarden and Munoz both swapped the lead repeatedly. But both had to stop for gas, and Rossi moved into the lead. It was all his from there as he easily coasted to the finish line.

The win allowed team owner Michael Andretti to celebrate in the 100th running of a race that has tormented his family. Andretti earlier this month was voted by the 27 living winners as the best driver never to win the race, but he has now won the 500 four times as a car owner.

"To get a 1-2 finish in the 100th running of the Indy 500 is pretty good," Andretti said. "I'm just so happy for everyone on the team. We are just so happy."

Newgarden finished third and was followed by Tony Kanaan, Charlie Kimball and JR Hildebrand as Chevrolet drivers took spots three through six.

Newgarden, along with Hunter-Reay, Bell, Kanaan and James Hinchcliffe, had the strongest cars most of the race. It a tough defeat for Newgarden.

"If I was in Alex's position, I'd be the happiest person in the world right now, I wouldn't care how we won the damn race," Newgarden said. "It just sucks it didn't play out the way we needed it to, fuel became a factor at the end. Everyone was on different strategies, and they played that strategy.

"Those guys, to put it politely, weren't as strong as us. They didn't have as strong a chance to win, so they had to mix it up. It worked out at the end for them."

Hinchcliffe, the polesitter who missed this race last year after a near-fatal accident in a practice session, faded to seventh despite being one of the best cars in the field.

In front of the first sellout in Indy 500 history, Rossi stunned the more than 350,000 fans in attendance. He'd been in Monaco this time last year, unsure of what his future held.

"I had no idea I'd be in IndyCar, I had no idea I'd be in the Indy 500," said Rossi, who becomes the 70th winner in race history and will become the 103rd face on the famed Borg-Warner Trophy.