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AUTO: MAY 20 INDYCAR Series The 107th Indianapolis 500

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INDIANAPOLIS – British driver Katherine Legge is the only woman competing in the 107th running of the Indy 500.  For Sunday’s race, she will be driving for Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing, in car #44.

However, Katherine Legge is just the most recent female racer in the Indy 500.  The first-ever woman to enter was Janet Guthrie in 1977.

Guthrie was a pioneer for women in the sport, and she was highly accomplished outside of her racing career as well.  She raced for Vollstedt in 1977, finishing 29th.

1980 Daytona 500 NASCAR race

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Just one year later, she finished in 9th place, a record held until 2005.  And, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum says this finish was made even more impressive by the fact that she drove all 500 miles with a broken wrist.

The now-85-year-old was also the first female to compete in the Daytona 500.  She was inducted into the IMS Hall of Fame in 2020, alongside racers like Dale Earnhardt.

After Guthrie’s impressive run came competitors like Lyn St. James.  Then, another name entered the scene that many race fans will recognize: Sarah Fisher.


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Ohio-born Fisher made nine appearances in the Indy 500, though she never won the race.  She was also a team owner for a time and is still a popular public figure.

Following Fisher was one of the most famous names in the sport, period.

Danica Patrick currently holds the record for the best finish by a female at the Indy 500, having ended in 3rd place in 2009.

The Danica Double - Behind the Scenes with Danica Patrick

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The superstar is also the only woman to have ever won an IndyCar race, as she finished first at the Japan 300 in 2008.

This year, it will be up to Katherine Legge to represent.  Her appearance at the Indy 500 comes after Simona de Silvestro, Pippa Mann, Ana Beatriz Figuereido, and Milka Duno competed in recent years.

Learn more about female drivers in the Indy 500 here.

AUTO: MAY 20 INDYCAR Series The 107th Indianapolis 500

Source: Icon Sportswire / Getty