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2019 Indianapolis 500 Odds & Picks: Newgarden, Power, Rossi & Pagenaud All Listed as Co-Favorites

Daniel Coyle

by Daniel Coyle in Racing

Updated Apr 10, 2020 · 5:33 PM PDT

Indianapolis 500
The Indianapolis 500 will take place this Sunday. Photo by momentcaptured1 (flickr) [CC License].
  • Defending Indianapolis 500 winner Will Power is joined by Josef Newgarden, Alexander Rossi, and Simon Pagenaud as +800 co-favorites in this year’s event
  • Power has failed to earn a win since claiming victory in last year’s Indy 500 but has reach the podium in this race twice in the past five years
  • Pagenaud is coming off a thrilling win in the rain at the IndyCar GrandPrix, and will start on the pole in Sunday’s race

Will Power will face plenty of stiff competition in his bid this weekend to repeat as the winner of the Indianapolis 500. Despite extending his season-long winless drought with a disappointing seventh-place finish at this month’s IndyCar Grand Prix, Power remains deadlocked in a four-way tie atop the Indianapolis 500 futures odds, joining Josef Newgarden, Alexander Rossi, and Simon Pagenaud as a +800 co-favorite.

2019 Indianapolis 500 Odds

Driver Odds to Win 2019 Indianapolis 500
Josef Newgarden +800
Will Power +800
Alexander Rossi +800
Simon Pagenaud +800
Scott Dixon +900
Helio Castroneves +1000
Ed Carpenter +1100
Spencer Pigot +1200
Colton Herta +1200
Marco Andretti +1400
Takuma Sato +1600
Ryan Hunter-Reay +1600
Ed Jones +1800
Sebastien Bourdais +2000
Graham Rahal +2500

*Odds taken 05/23/19

Power Aiming to End Drought, Repeat as Indy 500 Champ

Power claimed his first career Indy 500 victory a year ago, outlasting pole-sitter Ed Carpenter who had held the lead for 65 laps. However, wins have been scarce since for the 38-year-old Australian. Power’s only other victory came last August at the Bommarito Automotive Group 500, and he has failed to reach the podium in four outings since finishing third in the season opener at the Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg.

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It is tough to discount Power’s chances to repeat due to his recent shaky run. The Team Penske driver has reached the podium at the Brickyard twice in the past four years. However, Power has enjoyed little luck at Indy when failing to lock up a spot in the front row of the starting grid, finishing in the top 10 just once when starting from the second row, where he will begin the 103rd running of the Indianapolis 500 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway on Sunday afternoon.

Pagenaud Prays for Rain Following IndyCar Grand Prix Victory

Conversely, Pagenaud will be looking to build on his first victory since 2017 when he starts on the pole at Sunday’s race. The 35-year-old Frenchman earned his first win in 17 appearances at this month’s IndyCar Grand Prix, passing Scott Dixon with just two laps to go in wet conditions to earn the win by 2.0469 seconds.

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Pagenaud continued his impressive performance in Indianapolis 500 qualifying, claiming the pole position, and will start from the front row for the third time in five years.

Pagenaud has enjoyed steady progress over his eight career appearances at the Indy 500, and turned in a personal-best sixth-place finish last year after starting from the two-spot.

Now sitting in fourth place on the NTT Indycar Series standings with 138 points, Pagenaud has enjoyed steady progress over his eight career appearances at the Indy 500, and turned in a personal-best sixth-place finish last year after starting from the two-spot.

A fan of racing in the rain, Pagenaud could once again enjoy the advantage of a wet track in Sunday’s race, with long-term weather forecasts calling for rain in the Indianapolis area on race day.

Past 5 Indianapolis 500 Winners

Year Indianapolis 500 Winner
2018 Will Power
2017 Takuma Sato
2016 Alexander Rossi
2015 Juan Pablo Montoya
2014 Ryan Hunter-Reay

Rossi Looking to Duplicate Historic Rookie Win

The most recent rookie winner at the Indianapolis 500, back to 2016, Rossi has enjoyed regular success ever since at the Greatest Spectacle in Racing, following up his victory in 2016 with a seventh-place finish and mounting an impressive drive towards a fourth-place finish last season after earning the no. 32 spot on the starting grid.

The 27-year-old has produced consistent results early on this season, turning in three top five performances including defending his title at the Grand Prix of Long Beach, but took a step back earlier this month at the IndyCar Grand Prix, recording his worst performance in almost two years with a 22nd-place finish.

Newgarden Continues to Top Standings Despite Shaky Run at IndyCar Grand Prix

Newgarden is also coming off his worst run of the season, finishing a distant 15th at the IndyCar Grand Prix after leading for 20 laps. However, after earning three trips to the podium in five race appearances this season, the Hendersonville, Tennessee native remains perched atop the NTT IndyCar Series standings with 182 points, six up on Scott Dixon.

The fast start to the season may be just what Newgarden needs to turn around a somewhat mediocre track record at the Indianapolis 500. The 28-year-old reached the podium with a third-place run after starting at the front of the grid back in 2016, but has otherwise not been a factor in seven previous appearances at the legendary Memorial Day weekend event.

Newgarden has managed to finish better than 19th at the Indy 500 on just three occasions, including last year’s eighth-place run.

Newgarden has managed to finish better than 19th at the Indy 500 on just three occasions, including last year’s eighth-place run, and will have his work cut out from him to make up for lost ground when he starts from the third row of the starting grid on Sunday afternoon.

Further down the Indianapolis 500 odds, Scott Dixon closely trails the favorites at +900, just ahead of three-time Indy 500 winner Helio Castroneves at +1000, while Spencer Pigot joins Colton Herta at +1200.

Dixon a Model of Consistency Since Last Season

Dixon has been a model of consistency since early last season, reaching the podium in 13 of his past 18 IndyCar Series appearances, including wins at the 2018 Honda Indy Toronto, 2018 DXC Technology 600, and the 2018 Chevrolet Detroit Grand Prix.

Affectionately known as “The Iceman”, Dixon earned his lone Indy 500 victory back in 2008, and came in third in last year’s race. But like Newgarden, Dixon will be hampered by poor positioning on the starting grid, where he sits 18th.

No longer a regular driver in IndyCar Series racing, Castroneves has turned in mixed results in recent appearances at the Indianapolis 500. The 44-year-old Brazilian legend has finished second on two occasions in his past five appearances, but turned in a career-worst 27th-place performance last year after starting from the third row.

Pick: Simon Pagenaud (+800)

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