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Robert Buddy Lazier

Buddy Lazier at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in 2008.
Nationality United States American
Date of birth October 31, 1967 (1967-10-31) (age 42)
Place of birth Vail, Colorado
Related to Bob Lazier (father)
Jaques Lazier (brother)
2010 IRL IndyCar Series
Debut season 1996
Current team Hemelgarn Racing
Car no. 91
Former teams Dreyer & Reinbold Racing
Panther Racing
Sam Schmidt Motorsports
Starts 100
Wins 8
Poles 2
Best finish 1st in 2000
Previous series
1989-1995 CART
Championship titles
2000 Indy Racing League Champion
Awards
2003 Scott Brayton Trophy

Robert Buddy Lazier (born October 31, 1967 in Vail, Colorado) is an American open-wheel racecar driver. He won the 1996 Indianapolis 500 and has finished in the Top Ten in that race six times. Both his father Bob Lazier and brother Jaques Lazier are veterans of the Indy 500 as well.

Contents

Career

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1989-2005

Lazier first appeared in CART beginning in 1989 driving for Gary Trout Motorsports and also participated in The Indy 500 as a rookie. In preparation for the founding of the Indy Racing League in 1996, he signed with Ron Hemelgarn's Hemelgarn Racing whom he drove in the Indianapolis 500 for in 1991.

Buddy Lazier driving at Laguna Seca in 1991

Buddy was one of the drivers in the first IRL race and won the 1996 Indianapolis 500, the first sanctioned by the IRL despite suffering a major back injury earlier in the season. Following the fame and money of the Indy win, a strong partnership between Buddy, Hemelgarn, and sponsor Delta Faucet formed. This partnership resulted in a model season for the team in 2000 with Buddy winning 2 races on his way to the series championship followed by a second place effort in 2001. Following the influx of former CART Teams and the new engine suppliers in 2002, Lazier and Hemelgarn had extreme difficulty competing at the level that they had before and they lost their sponsor following the 2003 season. Buddy only completed in the Indy 500 in 2004 for Hemelgarn and was signed to drive the 2005 Indy 500 for the Byrd Brothers and Panther Racing, placing fifth in the race, ahead of Panther's 2 regular drivers Tomáš Enge and Tomas Scheckter in a race that many believe may have resurrected his career.

In 2005, Buddy acquired a four-race deal with Panther Racing to drive the #95 Pennzoil/American Sentry Guard Dallara/Chevrolet. However, he received an extra race in Enge's #2 Rockstar Energy Drink Dallara/Chevrolet at Milwaukee on July 24. Enge was injured during a crash at the Nashville Superspeedway during the Firestone Indy 200 a week earlier. He logged four top-tens in the No. 95 and an 18th-place finish in Enge's No. 2 car. With Panther's contraction to a single car in 2006, Lazier was forced to search for another team, which he found in Robbie Buhl's Dreyer & Reinbold Racing.

2006-2009

In 2006, Lazier raced in seven events for Dreyer & Reinbold with a best finish of 12th in the Indy 500. He was replaced by Aussie Ryan Briscoe for the Watkins Glen International race and Briscoe finished third. He was replaced again by Briscoe after the Kansas Speedway race on July 2, finishing a disappointing 15th after starting seventh. Lazier returned for the Michigan International Speedway race in August, but Sarah Fisher finished the season for the team in the two remaining races that Briscoe was not contracted for in the IndyCar Series.

Lazier did not have a contract as a regular driver for the 2007 IndyCar Series season. However, Lazier teamed up with Sam Schmidt Motorsports to race in the 2007 Indianapolis 500. Without a permanent ride, Lazier drove in a NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series race with Billy Ballew Motorsports at Las Vegas Motor Speedway on September 22 of that year and finished 24th.

Lazier practicing for the 2008 Indianapolis 500

2008 began similar to 2007 without a full-time ride in any series. Lazier and Hemelgarn Racing reunited in a late effort to qualify for the 2008 Indianapolis 500. Lazier qualified on the third day of qualifying but was bumped from the field. He struggled to find speed early in Sunday's bump day session, but with less than half an hour remaining in the session the team completed major changes and made a qualifying attempt with no practice laps on the new setup. The attempt was not fast enough, so the team adjusted wing settings to remove drag from the car and went out for another attempt, again with no practice. This attempt was fast enough to bump Roger Yasukawa and put Lazier 32nd on the grid and earn them a $50,000 bonus for being the last driver to make a successful qualifying attempt. Coming off the success of the 2008 race, the team entered the same combination for the 2009 Indianapolis 500. However, against a stiffer field of entrants and with limited practice time, Lazier was unable to find enough speed to qualify and was one of three cars to miss the field. Lazier failing to qualify ended his streak of 14 consecutive Indy 500 starts, the longest among active drivers, dating back to 1995.

Motorsports Career Results

American Open Wheel

(key) (Races in bold indicate pole position)

CART

Year Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 Rank Points
1989 Lazier United States
PHX
 
United States
LBH
 
United States
INDY
INJ
United States
MIL
 
United States
DET
 
United States
POR
 
United States
CLE
 
United States
MEA
 
Canada
TOR
 
United States
MIS
 
United States
POC
 
United States
MDO
 
United States
ROA
 
United States
NZR
 
United States
LS1
 
United States
LS
DNQ
1990 Hemelgarn United States
PHX
DNP
United States
LBH
DNP
United States
INDY
DNQ
United States
MIL
DNP
United States
DET
DNQ
United States
POR
13
United States
CLE
Ret
United States
MEA
DNP
Canada
TOR
DNS
United States
MIS
Ret
United States
DEN
DNQ
Canada
VAN
12
United States
MDO
Ret
United States
ROA
DNS
United States
NZR1
DNP
United States
NZR
Ret
United States
LS
DNP
29th 1
1991 Hemelgarn/Coyne/Walker Australia
SRF
Ret
United States
LBH
Ret
United States
PHX
DNP
United States
INDY
Ret
United States
MIL
DNP
United States
DET
18
United States
POR
DNP
United States
CLE
11
United States
MEA
DNP
Canada
TOR
Ret
United States
MIS
DNP
United States
DEN
9
Canada
VAN
DNP
United States
MDO
Ret
United States
ROA
Ret
United States
NZR
DNP
United States
LS1
DNP
United States
LS
Ret
22nd 6
1992 Coyne Australia
SRF
16
United States
PHX
14
United States
LBH
Ret
United States
INDY
Ret
United States
DET
Ret
United States
POR
Ret
United States
MIL
17
United States
NHM
DNP
Canada
TOR
Ret
United States
MIS
7
United States
CLE
Ret
United States
ROA
13
Canada
VAN
10
United States
MDO
Ret
United States
NZR1
DNP
United States
NZR
15
United States
LS
Ret
19th 10
1993 Leader Card Australia
SRF
Ret
United States
PHX
Ret
United States
LBH
19
United States
INDY
DNQ
United States
MIL
15
United States
DET
Ret
United States
POR
DNP
United States
CLE
Ret
Canada
TOR
DNP
United States
MIS
Ret
United States
NHM
DNQ
United States
ROA
14
Canada
VAN
DNP
United States
MDO
20
United States
NZR
Ret
United States
LS
DNQ
38th 0
1994 Leader Card Australia
SRF
DNQ
United States
PHX
13
United States
LGH
Ret
United States
INDY
DNQ
United States
MIL
18
United States
DET
17
United States
POR
Ret
United States
CLE
DNP
Canada
TOR
DNQ
United States
MIS
Ret
United States
MDO
DNQ
United States
NHM
DNS
Canada
VAN
Ret
United States
ROA
DNP
United States
NZR
DNQ
United States
LS
DNP
36th 0
1995 Project Indy/Menard/Payton/Coyne United States
MIA
DNP
Australia
SRF
Ret
United States
PHX
DNP
United States
LBH
DNP
United States
NZR
Ret
United States
INDY
Ret
United States
MIL
18
United States
DET
DNP
United States
POR
DNP
United States
ROA
DNP
Canada
TOR
15
United States
CLE
DNP
United States
MIS
14
United States
MDO
DNP
United States
NHM
Ret
Canada
VAN
DNP
United States
LS
DNP
35th 0

IndyCar

Year Team 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 Rank Points
1996 Hemelgarn United States
WDW
Ret
United States
PHX
DNS
United States
INDY
1
14th 53
1996-1997 Hemelgarn United States
NHM
Ret
United States
LVS
Ret
United States
WDW
5
United States
PHX
Ret
United States
INDY
4
United States
TXS
Ret
United States
PPIR
8
United States
CLT
1
United States
NH2
12
United States
LV2
Ret
8th 209
1998 Hemelgarn United States
WDW
Ret
United States
PHX
Ret
United States
INDY
2
United States
TXS
Ret
United States
NHM
7
United States
DOV
2
United States
CLT
13
United States
PPI
7
United States
ATL
Ret
United States
TX2
6
United States
LVS
3
5th 262
1999 Hemelgarn United States
WDW
10
United States
PHX
Ret
United States
INDY
7
United States
TXS
14
United States
PPIR
5
United States
ATL
Ret
United States
DOV
2
United States
PPI2
4
United States
LVS
11
United States
TX2
10
6th 224
2000 Hemelgarn United States
WDW
2
United States
PHX
1
United States
LVS
Ret
United States
INDY
2
United States
TXS
7
United States
PPIR
Ret
United States
ATL
2
United States
KTY
1
United States
TX2
4
1st 290
2001 Hemelgarn United States
PHX
3
United States
HMS
Ret
United States
ATL
6
United States
INDY
18
United States
TXS
4
United States
PPIR
1
United States
RIR
1
United States
KAN
5
United States
NSH
1
United States
KTY
1
United States
STL
13
United States
CHI
11
United States
TX2
Ret
2nd 398
2002 Hemelgarn United States
HMS
Ret
United States
PHX
7
United States
FON
7
United States
NZR
Ret
United States
INDY
Ret
United States
TXS
8
United States
PPIR
15
United States
RIR
Ret
United States
KAN
7
United States
NSH
Ret
United States
MIS
13
United States
KTY
3
United States
STL
15
United States
CHI
3
United States
TX2
7
8th 305
2003 Hemelgarn United States
HMS
DNP
United States
PHX
11
Japan
MOT
Ret
United States
INDY
Ret
United States
TXS
13
United States
PPIR
10
United States
RIR
20
United States
KAN
13
United States
NSH
Ret
United States
MIS
12
United States
STL
11
United States
KTY
16
United States
NZR
13
United States
CHI
16
United States
FON
DNP
United States
TX2
DNP
19th 201
2004 Hemelgarn United States
HMS
 
United States
PHX
 
Japan
MOT
 
United States
INDY
Ret
United States
TXS
 
United States
RIR
 
United States
KAN
 
United States
NSH
 
United States
MIL
 
United States
MIS
 
United States
KTY
 
United States
PPIR
 
United States
NZR
 
United States
CHI
 
United States
FON
 
United States
TX2
 
30th 12
2005 Panther United States
HMS
 
United States
PHX
 
United States
STP
 
Japan
MOT
 
United States
INDY
5
United States
TXS
DNP
United States
RIR
DNP
United States
KAN
DNP
United States
NSH
9
United States
MIL
Ret
United States
MIS
6
United States
KTY
6
United States
PPIR
DNP
United States
SNM
DNP
United States
CHI
10
United States
WGL
DNP
United States
FON
DNP
23rd 140
2006 Dreyer & Reinbold United States
HMS
Ret
United States
STP
Ret
Japan
MOT
14
United States
INDY
12
United States
WGL
DNP
United States
TXS
Ret
United States
RIR
16
United States
KAN
15
United States
NSH
DNP
United States
MIL
DNP
United States
MIS
15
United States
KTY
DNP
United States
SNM
DNP
United States
CHI
DNP
18th 122
2007 Sam Schmidt United States
HMS
 
United States
STP
 
Japan
MOT
 
United States
KAN
 
United States
INDY
19
United States
MIL
 
United States
TXS
 
United States
IOW
 
United States
RIR
 
United States
WGL
 
United States
NSH
 
United States
MDO
 
United States
MIS
 
United States
KTY
 
United States
SNM
 
United States
DET
 
United States
CHI
 
28th 12
2008 Hemelgarn United States
HMS
 
United States
STP
 
Japan
MOT1
 
United States
LBH1
 
United States
KAN
 
United States
INDY
17
United States
MIL
 
United States
TXS
 
United States
IOW
 
United States
RIR
 
United States
WGL
 
United States
NSH
 
United States
MDO
 
Canada
EDM
 
United States
KTY
 
United States
SNM
 
United States
DET
 
United States
CHI
 
Australia
SRF2
 
37th 13
Years Teams Races Poles Wins Podiums
(Non-win)
Top 10s
(Non-podium)
Indianapolis 500
Wins
Championships
13 4 100 2 8 10 27 1 (1996) 1 (2000)

Indy 500 results

Year Chassis Engine Start Finish Team
1989 March Cosworth Practice Crash Lazier
1990 Lola Cosworth Did Not Qualify Hemelgarn
1991 Lola Buick 23rd 33rd Hemelgarn
1992 Lola Buick 24th 14th Leader Cards
1993 Lola Buick Did Not Qualify Leader Cards
1994 Lola Ilmor Did Not Qualify Leader Cards
1995 Lola Menard-Buick 23rd 27th Menard
1996 Reynard Ford-Cosworth 5th 1st Hemelgarn
1997 Dallara Oldsmobile 10th 4th Hemelgarn
1998 Dallara Oldsmobile 11th 2nd Hemelgarn
1999 Dallara Oldsmobile 22nd 7th Hemelgarn
2000 Dallara Oldsmobile 16th 2nd Hemelgarn
2001 Dallara Oldsmobile 10th 18th Hemelgarn
2002 Dallara Chevrolet 20th 15th Hemelgarn
2003 Dallara Chevrolet 21st 21st Hemelgarn
2004 Dallara Chevrolet 28th 23rd Hemelgarn
2005 Dallara Chevrolet 9th 5th Panther
2006 Dallara Honda 25th 12th Dreyer & Reinbold
2007 Dallara Honda 22nd 19th Schmidt
2008 Dallara Honda 32nd 17th Hemelgarn
2009 Dallara Honda Did Not Qualify Hemelgarn

External links

Sporting positions
Preceded by
Jacques Villeneuve
Indianapolis 500 Winner
1996
Succeeded by
Arie Luyendyk
Preceded by
Greg Ray
Indy Racing Northern Lights Series Champion
2000
Succeeded by
Sam Hornish, Jr.
Awards
Preceded by
Arie Luyendyk
Scott Brayton Award
2003
Succeeded by
Helio Castroneves

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