Buddy Rice: Back where he belongs

Buddy Rice: Back where he belongs

Buddy Rice was once heralded as the saviour of US open-wheel racing, but since his Indianapolis 500 win in 2004, he has faded from the scene. Now he's back for a one-off Indy appearance with Panther and he wants to win, as Jeff Olson explains

To understand where IndyCar racing stands in the US psyche, one must understand the story of Buddy Rice.

Brash, young, different and American, Rice had the moment that should have launched his career into the troposphere. In 2004, set to a shower of sparks and dust and backed by the soundtrack of a tornado warning, Rice won the Indianapolis 500. He was what 'they' wanted. Right demographic, right style, right cool factor. A marketing and driving wunderkind.

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