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Tony Kanaan, KV Racing Technology - Q&A

But, no, we came from a generation, including Jimmy on that, our generation was really tough. At the time I was the youngest. They were the old dogs, the guys that set the example. Now actually here we are. I think Dario proved the old guys can still drive fast. I'm right next to it two years after him.

It's awesome. I think we showed it's so nice to make history like that, have good friends, have friends that really are winners.

I remember one day I was hanging with a team owner, I don't want to elaborate on it, but he said he only hang with winners because if you hang with losers, you become one. I guess it's pretty good.

So you talked about the reception you got out there from other teams. You got the long hug from Dario. You have this crowd of fans out there that mobbed you as you came through. I know it's hard to put that all in perspective and talk about it, but this is a really popular win. What does that mean to be so well-regarded by everybody?

Tony Kanaan:
Well, you know, first I think we can prove that theory that says that nice guys don't win. I guess we proved them wrong.

Second, the 11 number never won here, so we made another history. Somebody told me that this morning. I didn't know if it was a negative or positive.

I mean, this place, I've always said it, it's been special to me, and I meant that when I said that. I didn't have to win here. I said that out there. The fans, they actually spoiled me a little bit on my win. When I finished 11th here, starting dead last, I got out of the car and it was exactly the same.

I already had felt a little bit, I hadn't drinked the milk, kissed the bricks, but it means a lot to me, because so many people I can feel they wanted me to win. It's such a selfish thing to do because what are they getting from it? I'm the one that gets the trophy. If you can bring some joy to them, and I think the best thing was try to put an exciting race for them.

I said it before the race: I believed that this win was more for people out there than for me. I wanted it all my life. But over the years, I was kind of OK with the fact that I may never have a chance to win it. Then I started coming back here.

From day one, it catches me by surprise, I can't walk out there, I couldn't before, I don't know now, maybe it's going to get worse, the parade, everywhere, it's just unbelievable.

It's nice. I think wins are important, trophies are really nice, but what I'm going to take forever, it's definitely this.

Tony, you're a student of the sport. I don't know if you had a chance to meet Lloyd Ruby or not. You had been linked with him as far as best drivers to never win the Indianapolis 500. To finally be rid of that title, talk about how well and relieved you feel.

Tony Kanaan:
It wasn't a pressure. Robin Miller tried to hammer that every year that I was here (laughter).

Related Pictures

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Tony Kanaan, driver of the #11 KV Racing Technology Chevrolet, celebrates in Victory Lane after winning the Indianapolis 500 Sunday, May 26, 2013 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis, Indiana. It is Kanaan`s first Indy 500 victory in 12 starts. (Photo by Scott LePage for Chevrolet)
Tony Kanaan celebrates winning the 2013 Indianapolis 500 - Sunday, May 26 2013. (Photo Credit: Walter Kuhn for IndyCar Media)
The #11 KV Racing crew celebrates winning the 2013 Indianapolis 500 - Sunday, May 26 2013. (Photo Credit: John Cote for IndyCar Media)
KV Racing team owner Jimmy Vasser congratulates Tony Kanaan on winning the 2013 Indianapolis 500 - Sunday, May 26 2013. (Photo Credit: Michael Roth for IndyCar Media)
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