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Groundbreaking driver Kenny Bräck returns to IMS 25 years after Indy 500 win

Bräck was first Swedish driver to win Indy 500
Posted at 9:30 PM, May 20, 2024

INDIANAPOLIS — Kenny Bräck broke barriers in 1999 as the first Swedish driver to win the Indy 500. 25 years later, he's back on the track.

Bräck is assisting Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing in an advisory role for this year's Indy 500.

He said he's realizing how much his win meant to his home country.

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"I don't think that it fully sunk in for me until years later," Bräck said. "When I look back at my career, I remember the various race wins, championships, and a lot of different things, but outside people remember an Indy 500 victory."

Bräck is no longer the only Swedish name on the Borg-Warner trophy. Marcus Ericsson, who Bräck personally helped mentor, won the Indy 500 in 2022.

Three Swedish drivers are on the starting grid this year: Ericsson, Felix Rosenqvist, and Linus Lundqvist.

Bräck was the only Swedish driver in the field the year he took home the trophy.

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"It means that there's a bigger interest from other kids to go into that sport and that the sport gets visibility," Bräck said. "I hope it will continue. We have three Swedish drivers in this field and maybe that will promote the sport to even more Swedes in the future."

Bräck also won the 1998 Indy Racing League championship. He retired from racing after the 2005 Indy 500.