IndyCar: 5 longshot picks to win the 2024 Indy 500

Five IndyCar drivers who have a solid chance to be key players on race day are listed with relatively long odds to win the Indy 500.
Helio Castroneves, Meyer Shank Racing, Indy 500, IndyCar
Helio Castroneves, Meyer Shank Racing, Indy 500, IndyCar / Mykal McEldowney/IndyStar / USA TODAY
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3. Takuma Sato: +3000

Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing had a disastrous month of May last year, with three of their four cars involved in the four-car battle for the three spots on the 11th and final row of the Indy 500 grid -- and the other only qualifying in 30th place, last among those not involved in the Bump Day qualifying session.

While it is widely expected that the team will indeed be better this time around, we hear every year from pretty much every team that they've "improved". The question is how much will they have improved in relation to other teams.

Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing certainly entered this year with the most room to improve, and one step they took to do that was bringing in two-time Indy 500 winner Takuma Sato.

Bobby Rahal's team didn't exactly light the world on fire in the 2011 Indy 500 either, yet when they signed a relatively unknown Sato for 2012, he nearly won the race, crashing out while battling for the lead with eventual winner Dario Franchitti on the final lap.

Sato returned to the team in 2018 after winning the 2017 Indy 500 for Andretti Autosport and was involved in an early crash. But in 2019, he placed third, and in 2020, he won again.

Sato at +3000 could be a steal come race day. And after having spent the 2023 Indy 500 with Chip Ganassi Racing, he knows what a fast car feels like. This is a partnership that has worked well in the past, and this is a team hungrier than ever to get back on the right track.