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Dario Franchitti wins Indianapolis 500 for third time

He's only the ninth driver in the 96 years of the race to win three or more.
Franchitti 2012 05 27Enlarge
Dario Franchitti of Scotland, driver of the #50 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Honda, pours the traditional victory milk over his head in celebration of winning the IZOD IndyCar Series 96th running of the Indianapolis 500 mile race at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis, Ind., on May 27, 2012. (Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images)

Dario Franchitti won his third career Indianapolis 500 victory today, Sports Illustrated reported. He is only the ninth driver in the 96 years of the race to win three or more.

Franchitti, 39, who’s from Scotland (and married to actress Ashley Judd, if you care about that sort of thing), also won the race in 2007 and 2010, the New York Times reported.

This year’s Indy 500 was one of the hottest in history, both in terms of the temperature – which at 91 degrees, was one-degree less than the hottest weather in 1937 – and competitiveness, Sports Illustrated reported. Franchitti’s car averaged 167.734 miles an hour in a race where 10 drivers swapped the lead 35 times, according to the New York Times.

At the end of the race, Franchitti outmaneuvered Japan's Takuma Sato, who was in second place on the final lap. According to Sports Illustrated, Sato attempted to dive under Franchitti during the first turn, but he lost control and crashed into the outside wall in Turn 1.

"I was going for the win, of course," Sato, who was attempting to become the first driver from Japan to win the Indy 500, said, according to Sports Illustrated. "I don't think Dario gave me enough room so I'm really disappointed. It was the very last lap and I drove in, but he didn't move up. I had nowhere to go, so I'm a little disappointed."

American Scott Dixon came in second and Brazilian Tony Kanaan finished third, the New York Times reported.

In Victory Lane, Franchitti said his thoughts were with last year’s Indy 500 winner, the late Dan Wheldon, who died in a crash at Las Vegas Motor Speedway on Oct. 16, 2011.

More from GlobalPost: Dan Wheldon dies in fiery Indy Car crash, aged 33 (VIDEO)

"What a race, what a race," Franchitti said in a television interview after the event, the New York Times reported. "I think D-dub [Dan Wheldon] would be proud of that one.”

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