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Hinchcliffe boosted by Greg Moore tribute

James Hinchcliffe was able to pay tribute to one of his all-time sporting heroes during Indy 500 qualifying, by taking a pair of Greg Moore's race gloves on his qualifying lap.
James Hinchcliffe wasn't entirely alone in the cockpit of the #27 car as he launched into this qualifying runs at Indianapolis Motor Speedway on Pole Day on Saturday: inside his lime green firesuit, Hinchcliffe had been carrying a pair of Canadian racing hero Greg Moore's trademark red gloves for luck.

"It was a very emotional thing for me, because Greg's my hero," said Hinchcliffe. Moore was one of the stars of the CART World Series in the 1990s, until he was killed in an accident at Auto Club Speedway, Fontana in 1999.

“I was approached earlier in the week by one of Greg's old mechanics who said he had a pair,” revealed Hinchcliffe after his qualifying runs. "Greg never got to run here, so he asked me if I'd take them for a spin.

"To have been approached by somebody who knew him very well and was very good friends with him and his family to do that, it was beyond an honour," he continued. "To have even been considered worthy of being able to take his gloves around for a couple laps at the Speedway was a very, very touching thing. I'm incredibly grateful I got to do that.

"I've had them all week, and I sort of decided I wanted to save them for qualifying,” he added. “Ask anybody, and one of the coolest things we get to do is qualify at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, and I wanted him to be able to do that.”

Moore never took part in the Indy 500 because of the split between the CART series and the Indy Racing League at the time.

Hinchcliffe put his car onto the front row of the grid for Sunday's race, missing out on pole position by the incredibly slender margin of 0.013mph (0.0023s) to Ryan Briscoe. But that achievement was almost secondary in his mind on the day compared with thoughts of Greg Moore riding with him.

"It's just one of the coolest things I've had the chance to do. That will be a hard thing to top. It's certainly something I'll remember for a long time," he said.

But while the gloves inspired him to new heights in qualifying, Hinchcliffe feels that it wouldn't be right to take them into the race itself.

"In terms of where the gloves go for now, I think they did their job in qualifying, he said. "He helped me get a good run and a starting spot.

"We'll leave it at that. We'll leave the record intact. He's had his qualifying runs now. He's in the race as far as I'm concerned. I think that's a good place to leave it."

Related Pictures

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James Hinchcliffe #27 Team Andretti Autosport during practice for the 96th running of the Indianapolis 500. 12-27 May, 2012, Indianapolis, Indiana, USA. (c) 2012 Dan R. Boyd, LAT Photo USA (Photo credit: INDYCAR/LAT USA)
The front row for the 2012 Indy 500:  Ryan Hunter-Reay, James Hinchcliffe and Ryan Briscoe. 12-27 May, 2012, Indianapolis, Indiana, USA. (c) 2012, Michael L. Levitt LAT Photo USA (Photo Credit: INDYCAR/LAT USA)
James Hinchcliffe waits to qualify during qualifying for the 2012 Indianapolis 500. 12-27 May, 2012, Indianapolis, Indiana, USA. (c) 2012, Phillip Abbott LAT Photo USA  (Photo Credit: INDYCAR/LAT USA)
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KGBVD - Unregistered

May 24, 2012 9:16 PM

It's been wayyyy too long since a Canadian has won Indy (and I put that Canadian as 2nd best ever, behind his dad). We are entering a golden age of Canadian drivers, from Tag to Hinchcliffe in Indy, to Wickens and Spengler in DTM, to Lance Stroll (already a winner as a Ferrari young driver and a future F1 Champ!).

p_dizzle - Unregistered

May 24, 2012 6:25 PM

He was Canada's second best driver all time behind Gilles and he's only that because he never got the shot that Gilles did so we'll never really know. Jacques was really special too but he just never seemed to have the true fighting passion that his dad had but Greg had it. I was at Fontana when he was killed and it's still one of the saddest days of my life. Just look at all the success Castro-Neves has had in that Penske ride that was Gregs before he was killed and Helio couldn't hold a candle to Moore. Shame really... What could have been

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