Career Triple Crown next step for Montoya

Career Triple Crown next step for Montoya

Press Room IndyCar

Career Triple Crown next step for Montoya

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By Dave Lewandowski

Published: Jun 21, 2015

MAVTV 500 tickets, info

On June 27, Juan Pablo Montoya will attempt to complete Indy car racing’s career Triple Crown by winning the MAVTV 500. If successful, he’ll then seek to join Al Unser as the only drivers to win the Triple Crown in the same calendar year.

Montoya won the Indianapolis 500 Mile Race – the first of three 500-milers this season – with the 250-lap race at Auto Club Speedway up next and the 200-lap ABC Supply 500 on Aug. 23 at Pocono Raceway. Montoya earned his second Indianapolis 500 victory on May 24 in the No. 2 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet, which gave him a victory in two of the past three 500-mile races. He won at Pocono last summer.

Could it be the year for Montoya to join Unser? Well, American Pharoah won horse racing’s Triple Crown this year. Affirmed was the last Triple Crown winner in 1978 – the same year that Unser won the Indianapolis 500 and the 500-mile races at Pocono Raceway and Ontario (Calif.).

The Triple Crown series was part of Indy car racing from 1971-80. After Ontario closed in 1980, it was replaced by Michigan International Speedway and the Triple Crown continued until 1989. It resumed in 2013.

Unser’s 1978 streak

5-28 Indianapolis — Started fifth … second place — Tom Sneva

6-25 Pocono — Started 10th … second place — Johnny Rutherford

9-3 Ontario — Started seventh … second place — Pancho Carter

Unser has the most consecutive Triple Crown wins – last race of 1977 and all three in 1978.

Drivers who won all three Triple Crown races but not in the same year

Bobby Unser — Ontario (1974, ’76, ’79 and ’80), Indianapolis (1975 and ’81) and Pocono (1980)

A.J. Foyt — Pocono (1973, ’75, ’79 and ’81), Ontario (1975) and Indianapolis (1977)

Johnny Rutherford — Indianapolis (1974, ’76 and ’80), Pocono (1974) and Michigan (1986)

Danny Sullivan — Pocono (1984 and ’89), Indianapolis (1985) and Michigan (1988)

2014 Triple Crown race results

5-25 Indianapolis — Ryan Hunter-Reay (started 19th) … second place — Helio Castroneves

7-6 Pocono — Juan Pablo Montoya (started first) … second place — Helio Castroneves

8-30 Auto Club Speedway — Tony Kanaan (started seventh) … second place — Scott Dixon

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