The start of the 2022 IndyCar season is a little over a month away, with Alex Palou coming into the new season looking to defend his title. Last year proved to be something of a surprise, where we saw a changing of the guard in IndyCar. Scott Dixon and Josef Newgarden have been the dominant drivers in recent years, and while they were both in the hunt for the overall championship, it was Palou and Pato O’Ward who emerged as the young guns looking to shake things up. Will we continue to see them dominate this season, or will the old guard make a return to the top? Let’s talk about the Indianapolis 500 in our IndyCar Betting update, as well as who might challenge for the championship this year.
Next Season: 106th Running of the Indy 500 | IndyCar Betting
Indianapolis 500 Details
This is without a doubt the most iconic race on the IndyCar schedule. It is the one that even casual fans of the sport always tune into, and for very good reason. One of the things that seems to set this race apart from the rest is that it tends to be highly unpredictable. The reality is that, especially in modern racing, picking the winner is incredibly tough. The driver who wins the Indy 500 is rarely the one that goes on to become world champion. In fact, it is very often a longshot who comes away with the win. We will delve deeper into the race closer to that start time, which comes on Sunday, May 29. There are a few races before we get there, so let’s look at who might be at the top of the standings when it rolls around.
IndyCar Early Season Favorites
Alex Palou needs to be considered the favorite to win it all coming into the new season. That is very often the case when talking about a defending champion, and while getting to the top again is going to be tough, Palou will be the favorite for at least the first few races until we get a better idea of how all the drivers look in the early going.
Josef Newgarden was still in the hunt, albeit barely, heading into the final race of last season. He has won the world championship in the past and knows what it takes to end up on top of a very talented heap. Coming that close to winning in 2021 will have left a bit of a chip on his shoulder, so we really should be paying attention to him this year. He does, though, need to get off to a faster start this time around.
Colton Herta had a great season in 2021, but he is on a packed Andretti Motorsports team that has a lot of talented drivers on board. That may actually work against him this season, but he has proven how good he is and that he is ready to challenge for the title.
We can’t talk about potential champions without talking about the moist successful IndyCar driver in recent years. Scott Dixon had what many considered to be a down year in 2021, but he was still in the hunt late in the season. Never write this man off.