Tony Kanaan

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Tony Kanaan
Tony Kanaan 2008 Indy Japan 300.jpg
Tony Kanaan at the Indy Japan 300, Twin Ring Motegi race track, in April 2007
Nationality Brazilian
Born (1974-12-31) December 31, 1974 (age 39)
Salvador, Brazil
2014 IZOD IndyCar Series
Debut season 2002
Current team Target Chip Ganassi Racing
Car no. 10
Former teams Andretti Autosport
Mo Nunn Racing
Tasman Motorsports
KV Racing Technology
Starts 170
Wins 15
Poles 11
Fastest laps 14
Best finish 1st in 2004

Antoine Rizkallah Kanaan Filho, commonly known as Tony Kanaan (born December 31, 1974) is a Brazilian race car driver. Kanaan won the 2013 Indianapolis 500 and the 2004 Indy Racing League IndyCar Series championship. His Indycar Series championship came while driving Andretti Green Racing's 7-Eleven sponsored car, winning three times in his Honda-powered Dallara. That season he completed 3,305 laps, making him the first IndyCar Series driver to complete every possible lap in a season. He also led 889 laps in 13 separate races to establish an IndyCar Series record. Kanaan is also the only driver to lead the Indianapolis 500 in each of his first seven starts, and won his first Indy 500 in 2013 on his 12th attempt. He has a total of 15 IRL race victories. Kanaan was released from Andretti Autosport in October 2010 after 7-Eleven announced it would not return as his primary sponsor in 2011. After initially signing on with de Ferran Dragon Racing, the team shut down when sponsorship did not materialize. Kanaan currently drives the #10 for Target Chip Ganassi Racing.

Racing career[edit]

Kanaan started his driving career in Italy and won the 1994 Formula Europa Boxer title for Cram Competition using a Tatuus. After a season in Italian F3 he migrated to the US and was the 1997 Indy Lights champion, driving for Tasman. In 1999 he scored his first major victory in the Champ Car World Series by winning the U.S. 500 at Michigan International Speedway for Forsythe Championship Racing. After the Forsythe team lost their McDonald's sponsorship package, Kanaan moved on to Mo Nunn's start-up team for the next three years before moving on to the IRL in 2003 as a driver for Andretti Green Racing.

Following his IRL championship season, in 2005 he placed second in the championship to his teammate Dan Wheldon, and he won his first pole position for the Indianapolis 500 to add to his finishes of second, third, fifth and eighth in the event. Until his 2013 win at the Indy 500, it was one of the few holes in his resume. In September 2005 he tested a Formula One car with the BAR-Honda Team at Jerez as a reward for his 2004 IRL championship in a Honda powered car.

Kanaan is good friend of Brazilian Formula One driver Rubens Barrichello, and they exchanged helmets for the events on May 28, 2006. Barrichello wore Kanaan's helmet livery during the Monaco GP and Kanaan wore Rubens's one during the Indy 500. The two of them created a charity offering financial and technical aid to institutions within the voluntary sector, the Barrichello Kanaan Institute.[1]

Another of Kanaan's long-time good friends and a former teammate from his Tasman days is Helio Castroneves. Kanaan and Castroneves have developed an intense rivalry that has resulted in some hard feelings. Castroneves accused Kanaan of costing him the 2006 IndyCar Series championship by racing him too hard for position in the final race. Kanaan countered that he was not paid to let other people pass him for position. The two started to patch up their differences at Indianapolis in 2007.

Kanaan practicing for the 2007 Indianapolis 500.
Kanaan in 2010.

Kanaan had a fine 2007 season, winning a series-high five events by taking first place in Japan at Honda's Twin Ring Motegi track, the Milwaukee Mile, Michigan International Speedway, Kentucky Speedway, and the Detroit Grand Prix in Belle Isle. He also took the pole position at Kansas, although a pit-incident with team-mate Danica Patrick dropped him from a possible win. Later he took a second pole position at Kentucky. At the 2007 Indianapolis 500 he dominated the field and led at a rain delay just past the halfway point. A questionable call to pit right before the rain-shortened race ended gave the race to his teammate, Dario Franchitti, who did not appear to have Kanaan's speed. It was the latest in a string of disappointments at Indianapolis, and Kanaan was then often referred to—along with his team owner Michael Andretti – as one of the best drivers never to win the Indianapolis 500.[2] Kanaan recorded his first win of 2008 in the SunTrust Indy Challenge at Richmond International Raceway. In the 2009 race he hit the wall and failed to finish.

In October 2010, Kanaan was released from his contract with Andretti Autosport, a few weeks after convenience store giant 7-Eleven announced it would not return as Kanaan's primary sponsor in 2011. Kanaan won 14 races and 1 championship in 8 years with Andretti Autosport.

In March 2011, Kanaan announced a deal with KV Racing Technology. He will drive the No. 82 car sponsored by GEICO. In August 2011, it was announced that Kanaan signed on for another year with KV Racing Technology according to team owner Jimmy Vasser.[3]

On May 26, 2013 Kanaan won the 97th Indianapolis 500, his 1st Indy victory, he claimed, "I was known for not winning and now I am known for winning. The last lap was the longest lap of my life. I get to put my ugly face on that trophy." It was his first IndyCar victory since leaving Andretti Autosport and the first IndyCar Series victory for KV. Kanaan tied Sam Hanks in being the most experienced driver Indy 500 driver to win his first Indy 500, both doing so in their twelfth start.[4] At Sonoma, Kanaan tied with Jimmy Vasser for the all-time IndyCar record for most consecutive starts with 211, dating back to Portland in 2001.[5]

Kanaan will not return to KV Racing Technology in 2014, and on September 27, 2013, the Associated Press reported that Kanaan will join Chip Ganassi Racing.[6]

Indianapolis 500 history[edit]

Kanaan arrived at Indianapolis as a rookie in 2002, and despite being one of the top drivers on the IndyCar circuit, experienced a notable streak of bad luck for eleven seasons until finally winning the race in 2013.[7][8][9] Kanaan won the pole position in 2005, finished second in 2004, and also broke a historical race record by leading at least one lap in his first seven starts. Despite being competitive in most years, numerous near-misses, unfortunate crashes, and his status as a fan-favorite driver, made his 2013 long-awaited triumph a popular victory.

  • 2002: In his rookie year, Kanaan led 23 laps and was leading the race on lap 90, when Jimmy Vasser and Bruno Junqueira both slowed with mechanical problems. An oil leak on the racing line went unnoticed, and Kanaan spun in the oil, crashing out of the lead in turn 3.[10] One year earlier in 2001, Kanaan's friend and former Indy Lights teammate at Tasman Motorsports, Helio Castroneves, won Indy as a rookie. In 2002, Castroneves repeated, winning the race back-to-back.
  • 2003: Kanaan started second, and finished third. He led two laps, but was no match for the Penske cars, who finished 1st–2nd.
  • 2004: Kanaan ran among the leaders all day, and led 28 laps. Rain halted the race, however, 20 laps short of the finish, and Kanaan managed only second place.
  • 2005: Kanaan won his first Indy 500 pole position, and led 54 laps. He was not a factor in the final 50 laps, and dropped to 8th place at the finish. Kanaan's Andretti Green Racing teammate Dan Wheldon won the race.
  • 2006: Pit stop shuffling in the final 20 laps saw Kanaan inherit the lead on lap 183. Kanaan needed one final splash-and-go pit stop, but a caution came out on lap 191. Kanaan made his stop under yellow, and the sequence saw him lose the lead. Running 4th, Kanaan was blocked inadvertently by Michael Andretti, and lost momentum. On the final lap, Dan Wheldon slipped by to take 4th, and Kanaan finished 5th.
  • 2007: Kanaan was leading the race just beyond the halfway point when rain brought out the red flag on lap 113. If the rain continued, Kanaan could have been declared the winner, since the race had passed the point in which it had become official. The rain stopped, and the race was resumed. Kanaan continued to lead, and the leaders pit under a caution on lap 151. During the restart on lap 156, Kanaan came up on the back of Jaques Lazier, lost control, and spun into the entrance of the pits, blowing a tire. An angry Kanaan was credited with 12th place, while his Andretti Green Racing teammate Dario Franchitti won the race.
  • 2008: On lap 94, Kanaan set an all-time Indy 500 record by leading at least one lap in his first seven consecutive starts. The lead was short-lived however. On lap 105, Marco Andretti was trying to pass Kanaan in turn three, which sent Kanaan into the marbles. Kanaan lost control, crashed into the outside wall, then collected the car of Sarah Fisher.
  • 2009: On lap 98, while running third Tony Kanaan suffered a drive shaft failure at speed down the backstrech. The car suddenly pitched into the wall at the entrance to turn 3.[11] The car lost steering, bounced off the wall, then went straight into the wall in turn 3. In television interviews, Kanaan appeared visibly shaken. The next day, Tony stated the hit was recorded at 175 Gs.
  • 2010: On the morning of pole day, Kanaan spun out of turn 1, and wrecked hard in the south short chute. The crash prevented Kanaan from making a qualifying attempt on Saturday. The following day (Bump Day), Kanaan was practicing in his backup car, when he suffered another, nearly identical crash, in the same part of the track. The second crash put in question Kanaan's chances of qualifying, and set the team and driver back a considerable amount of time and effort. Kanaan finally managed to qualify, and started the race from the final row in 33rd place. On race day, Kanaan charged to the front, and ran as high as second in the last ten laps of the race. Kanaan nearly matched Tom Sneva's 1980 record of being the only driver to start last (33rd) and lead a lap. A fuel strategy gamble failed, and Kanaan was forced to make one final splash-and-go pit stop with 4 laps to go. The pit stop dropped him to 11th in the final standings, but garned much praise from the fans and media for the accomplishment.
  • 2011: Kanaan left Andretti Autosport, and wound up driving for KV Racing Technology. He qualified 22nd and worked his way up to 4th by lap 60. In the pits on lap 61, however, he was involved in a mishap with Pippa Mann. She was pulling out of her pit box as he was trying to pull in his, and he was forced to overshoot his pit stall. After being pushed back and receiving service, he dropped down to 24th place. He charged dramatically back up to 2nd place by lap 178. He pitted for fuel with 21 laps to go, which dropped him to an eventual 4th place finish. Kanaan later stated he felt he did not have a car fast enough to win.[12]
  • 2012: On a restart on lap 186, Kanaan made a bold move going from 5th to 1st into turn one, and led for seven laps. With less than six laps to go, he was passed for the lead on lap 194, and finished third.
  • 2013: In the fastest and most competitive 500 in history (a record 68 lead changes), Kanaan slipped in front of Ryan Hunter-Reay in turn one on a lap 198 restart. Dario Franchitti crashed a few seconds afterwards, and the race went under caution again, securing Kanaan his first Indy 500 victory.

Personal life[edit]

Kanaan is of Lebanese ancestry.[13]

Racing record[edit]

American Open-Wheel racing results[edit]

(key)

Indy Lights[edit]

Year Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 Rank Points
1996 Tasman Motorsports MIA
10
LBH
2
NAZ
12
MIS
17
MIL
7
DET
1
POR
5
CLE
19
TOR
24
TRO
2
VAN
2
LS
1
2nd 113
1997 Tasman Motorsports MIA
6
LBH
5
NAZ
5
SAV
23
STL
10
MIL
3
DET
1
POR
3
TOR
2
TRO
1
VAN
2
LS
2
FON
9
1st 156

CART[edit]

Year Team Chassis Engine 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 Rank Points
1998 Tasman Motorsports Reynard 98i Honda HRK MIA
Ret
MOT
6
LBH
5
NZR
9
RIO
Ret
STL
Ret
MIL
17
DET
8
POR
4
CLE
14
TOR
Ret
MIS
11
MDO
8
ROA
4
VAN
Ret
LS
3
HOU
3
SRF
7
FON
Ret
9th 92
1999 Forsythe Racing Reynard 99i Honda HRS MIA
Ret
MOT
6
LBH
Ret*
NZR
Ret
RIO
5
STL
7
MIL
18
POR
15
CLE
Ret
ROA
6
TOR
Ret
MIS
1
DET
6
MDO
Ret
CHI
11
VAN
9
LS
Ret
HOU
9
SRF
6
FON
9
11th 85
2000 Mo Nunn Racing Reynard 2Ki Mercedes-Benz IC108F MIA
10
LBH
Ret
RIO
Ret
MOT
Ret
NZR
8
MIL
10
DET
DNS
POR
Inj
CLE
Inj
TOR
Inj
MIS
Ret
CHI
Ret
MDO
13
ROA
8
VAN
14
LS
Ret
STL
13
HOU
10
SRF
8
FON
Ret
19th 24
2001 Mo Nunn Racing Reynard 01i Honda HR-1 MTY
7
LBH
7
TXS
NH
NZR
16
MOT
3
MIL
6
DET
DNS
POR
Ret
CLE
16
TOR
Ret
MIS
Ret
CHI
8
MDO
5
ROA
12
VAN
4
LAU
7
ROC
8
HOU
12
LS
8
SRF
17
FON
5
9th 93
2002 Mo Nunn Racing Reynard 02i Honda HR-2 MTY
16
LBH
20
MOT
15*
12th 99
Lola B02/00 MIL
16
LS
12
POR
8
CHI
8
TOR
17
CLE
8
VAN
3
MDO
14
ROA
4
MTL
3
DEN
6
ROC
15
MIA
9
SRF
5
FON
4
MXC
8*

IndyCar Series[edit]

Year Team Chassis Engine 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 Rank Points
2002 Mo Nunn Racing G-Force Chevrolet HMS PHX FON NZR INDY
28
TXS PPIR RIR KAN NSH MIS KTY STL CHI TX2 50th 2
2003 Andretti Green Racing Dallara Honda HMS
4
PHX
1
MOT
14
INDY
3
TXS
2
PPIR
2
RIR
5
KAN
4
NSH
9
MIS
16
STL
2
KTY
6
NZR
18
CHI
6
FON
3
TX2
14
4th 476
2004 Andretti Green Racing Dallara Honda HMS
8
PHX
1
MOT
2
INDY
2
TXS
1
RIR
5
KAN
3
NSH
1
MIL
4
MIS
2
KTY
5
PPIR
5
NZR
2
CHI
3
FON
2
TX2
2
1st 618
2005 Andretti Green Racing Dallara Honda HMS
3
PHX
3
STP
2
MOT
6
INDY
8
TXS
3
RIR
19
KAN
1
NSH
19
MIL
4
MIS
4
KTY
20
PPIR
3
SNM
1
CHI
5
WGL
2
FON
2
2nd 548
2006 Andretti Green Racing Dallara Honda HMS
11
STP
3
MOT
3
INDY
5
WGL
11
TXS
7
RIR
18
KAN
5
NSH
12
MIL
1
MIS
4
KTY
5
SNM
11
CHI
7
6th 384
2007 Andretti Green Racing Dallara Honda HMS
5
STP
3
MOT
1
KAN
15
INDY
12
MIL
1
TXS
2
IOW
16
RIR
4
WGL
4
NSH
18
MDO
4
MIS
1
KTY
1
SNM
4
DET
1
CHI
6
3rd 576
2008 Andretti Green Racing Dallara Honda HMS
8
STP
3
MOT1
5
LBH1
DNP
KAN
2
INDY
29
MIL
3
TXS
5
IOW
18
RIR
1
WGL
3
NSH
4
MDO
7
EDM
9
KTY
8
SNM
3
DET
3
CHI
4
SRF2
21
3rd 513
2009 Andretti Green Racing Dallara Honda STP
5
LBH
3
KAN
3
INDY
27
MIL
19
TXS
8
IOW
14
RIR
6
WGL
8
TOR
17
EDM
21
KTY
3
MDO
10
SNM
8
CHI
13
MOT
11
HMS
4
6th 386
2010 Andretti Autosport Dallara Honda SAO
10
STP
10
ALA
8
LBH
5
KAN
3
INDY
11
TXS
6
IOW
1
WGL
21
TOR
4
EDM
12
MDO
17
SNM
7
CHI
5
KTY
4
MOT
7
HMS
3
6th 453
2011 KV Racing Technology Dallara Honda STP
3
ALA
6
LBH
8
SAO
22
INDY
4
TXS1
11
TXS2
5
MIL
19
IOW
2
TOR
26
EDM
4
MDO
5
NHM
22
SNM
28
BAL
3
MOT
17
KTY
17
LVS
C
5th 366
2012 KV Racing Technology Dallara DW12 Chevrolet STP
25
ALA
21
LBH
4
SAO
13
INDY
3
DET
6
TXS
11
MIL
2
IOW
3
TOR
4
EDM
18
MDO
6
SNM
10
BAL
20
FON
18
9th 351
2013 KV Racing Technology Dallara DW12 Chevrolet STP
4
ALA
13
LBH
20
SAO
21
INDY
1
DET1
13
DET2
12
TXS
3
MIL
10
IOW
3
POC
13
TOR1
5
TOR2
24
MDO
24
SNM
13
BAL
15
HOU1
21
HOU2
24
FON
3
11th 397
2014 Chip Ganassi Racing Dallara DW12 Chevrolet STP
6
LBH
18
ALA
IMS
INDY
DET1
DET2
TXS
HOU1
HOU2
POC
IOW
TOR1
TOR2
MDO
MIL
SNM
FON
11th* 40*
* Season still in progress
1 Run on same day.
2 Non-points race.
Years Teams Races Poles Wins Podiums
(Non-win)**
Top 10s
(Non-podium)***
Indianapolis 500
Wins
Championships
11 3 178 11 15 43 67 1 (2013) 1 (2004)
** Podium (Non-win) indicates 2nd or 3rd place finishes.
*** Top 10s (Non-podium) indicates 4th through 10th place finishes.

Indianapolis 500[edit]

Year Chassis Engine Start Finish Team
2002 G-Force Chevrolet 5 28 Nunn
2003 Dallara Honda 2 3 Andretti Green
2004 Dallara Honda 5 2 Andretti Green
2005 Dallara Honda 1 8 Andretti Green
2006 Dallara Honda 5 5 Andretti Green
2007 Dallara Honda 2 12 Andretti Green
2008 Dallara Honda 6 29 Andretti Green
2009 Dallara Honda 6 27 Andretti Green
2010 Dallara Honda 33* 11 Andretti Autosport
2011 Dallara Honda 22 4 KV Racing Technology
2012 Dallara Chevrolet 8 3 KV Racing Technology
2013 Dallara Chevrolet 12 1 KV Racing Technology
*Tony Kanaan qualified 32nd in a back up car, but decided to switch back to his primary car for the race. This forced him to start from the 33rd position on the grid.

Complete American Le Mans Series results[edit]

Year Entrant Class Chassis Engine Tyres 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 Rank Points
2007 Andretti Green Racing LMP2 Acura ARX-01a Acura 3.4L V8 M SEB
ovr:2
cls:1
STP LNB TEX UTA LIM MID AME MOS DET PET
ovr:Ret
cls:Ret
MON
ovr:6
cls:4
17th 39
2008 Andretti Green Racing LMP2 Acura ARX-01b Acura 3.4L V8 M SEB STP LNB UTA LIM MID AME MOS DET PET
ovr:16
cls:7
MON
ovr:3
cls:1
22nd 39

Complete Stock Car Brasil results[edit]

Year Team Car 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 Rank Points
2012 Bassani Racing Peugeot 408 INT CTB VEL RBP LON RIO SAL CAS TAR CTB
BSB
19
INT
Ret
NC† 0

† Driver ineligible for championship points.

References[edit]

  1. ^ A2C - Internet to Business - www.a2c.com.br (2006-05-11). "Barrichello Kanaan Institute | Who we are". Ibk.org.br. Retrieved 2012-11-07. 
  2. ^ "Emotional Castroneves finishes fast to capture third Indianapolis 500". CNN. 2009-05-24. 
  3. ^ http://www.indystar.com/article/20110828/SPORTS0107/110828008
  4. ^ Indianapolis 500 win worth $2.35 million to Tony Kanaan, Autoweek, May 27, 2013, retrieved 2013-05-27
  5. ^ Matsuda, Darryl (2013-08-24). "Dario Franchitti wins Sonoma IndyCar pole". San Jose Mercury News. Retrieved 2013-08-27. 
  6. ^ Fox Sports (2013-09-27). "Report: Tony Kanaan to join Ganassi". Fox Sports. Retrieved 2013-10-02. 
  7. ^ Marot, Michael (2009-05-24). "Tony Kanaan dodges trouble at Indy". The Commercial Appeal. Retrieved 2010-06-22. 
  8. ^ Vermette, Brian (2010-05-28). "Can Helio Castroneves win the Indianapolis 500 from the pole and become a four-time winner?". RaceDriven.com. Retrieved 2010-06-22. 
  9. ^ Martin, Bruce (2009-07-26). "A difficult year for Brazilian Kanaan takes a downright frightening turn". Sports Illustrated. Retrieved 2010-06-22. 
  10. ^ "Indy 500 Capsule". cnnsi.com. 2002-05-26. Retrieved 2008-06-18. 
  11. ^ Ganguli, Tanya. Orlando Sentinel blog – http://blogs.orlandosentinel.com/sports_nascar/2009/05/indy-500-irl-points-leader-tony-kanaan-is-done-scott-dixon-leads.html
  12. ^ Rabjohns, Jeff (2011-05-29). "Indy 500: Tony Kanaan has another dramatic day". RaceDriven.com. Retrieved 2011-05-31. 
  13. ^ Lebanese Brazilian Tony Kanaan Wins The Indy 500. Updated News. 2013-05-28.

External links[edit]

Sporting positions
Preceded by
David Empringham
Indy Lights Champion
1997
Succeeded by
Cristiano da Matta
Preceded by
Patrick Carpentier
CART Rookie of the Year
1998
Succeeded by
Juan Pablo Montoya
Preceded by
Scott Dixon
IRL IndyCar Series Champion
2004
Succeeded by
Dan Wheldon
Awards
Preceded by
Sam Hornish, Jr.
Scott Brayton Award
2007
Succeeded by
Vitor Meira