Up and down day for Dreyer & Reinbold at Indy 500


It was a very quiet day for Johnson County businessman Dennis Reinbold’s team — until the final 20 laps.

That’s when driver Ryan Hunter-Reay, though out of pit sequence, led eight laps from Lap 180 to 187 before having to pit for fuel.

Hunter-Reay still had a solid day, finishing 11th despite three red flag stops over the final eight laps in the No. 23 Dreyer & Reinbold Racing/ROOT Insurance Chevrolet.

“We started the race with a lot of push and because of that, we got some tire vibrations in the first two stints which really impacted our performance today,” Hunter-Reay said. “We spent half of the race chasing the balance of the car.

If that wasn’t enough, Hunter-Reay’s front wing adjuster broke on the first pit stop, limiting the crew on what it could do with the car.

In the last quarter of the race, however, Hunter-Reay made some moves.

“I could actually race and move forward. I made up some positions then,” Hunter-Reay said. “It was one of those days where the ball didn’t roll our way. Even late in the race when we ran in the lead, we didn’t get in the pits for fuel when the red came out. That hurt us late in the race too.”

Hunter-Reay’s laps led for Dreyer & Reinbold were the first for the team since Sage Karam led two laps in the 2021 race.

All told, Dreyer & Reinbold pilots have led a total of 36 laps in the race, with the late Justin Wilson leading the way with 11. Other drivers to have led for the team include Buddy Rice (8 laps), Tomas Scheckter (5) and Karam (4).

Fate just wasn’t kind to the other Dreyer & Reinbold Racing driver, Graham Rahal.

Last week, Rahal was bumped from the field — unfortunately emulating his father and boss, Rahal Racing team owner Bobby, who didn’t qualify for the race in 1993.

A practice accident between Katherine Legge and Justin Wilson sent Wilson to the hospital for back surgery, and Rahal then got the call from Dreyer & Reinbold to sub and get back in the race as Wilson’s replacement.

But as the cars got started, Rahal’s car wouldn’t fire up. When it did, it stalled, and Rahal was wheeled to the pits by the Dreyer & Reinbold team. They were able to get the car started, but Rahal was already two laps down with little chance of winning the race.

Still, he raced and finished 22nd, exactly two laps down.

“First, I’m very thankful to get the opportunity to race at the 500,” Rahal said. “Obviously, a tough start to the day. We never really got going. We actually had a decent day from there on forward up until the very end. We just didn’t get to see it through after the battery issue.”