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Kenny Bräck
Nationality Sweden Swedish
Date of birth March 21, 1966 (1966-03-21) (age 43)
Place of birth Arvika, Värmland
Retired 2005
IRL IndyCar Series
Years active 1997–1999, 2002–2003, 2005
Teams Rahal Letterman Racing
Chip Ganassi Racing
A. J. Foyt Enterprises
Galles Racing
Starts 47
Wins 4
Poles 0
Best finish 1st in 1998
Previous series
2000–2002
1994–1995
1993
CART World Series
Formula 3000
Barber Saab Pro Series
Championship titles
1998
1993
Indy Racing League champion
Barber Saab Pro Series champion
Awards
2005
1999
Scott Brayton award
Indianapolis 500 winner

Kenny Bräck (born March 21, 1966 in Arvika, Värmland) is a race car driver from Sweden. Until his retirement from racing, he competed in the CART, Indy Racing League and the IROC series. He is the winner of the 1999 Indianapolis 500 and the 1998 driving champion of the Indy Racing League. In 2009, he competed in Rally X at X-Games 15 and won Gold.

Contents

Early career

He grew up in the little village Glava, where his father taught him to drive cars on the lake-ice in the winters. A neighbor introduced Kenny to racing when he at 13 years of age worked in his business one summer holiday, buying him a Go-Cart. Apart from the beginning of Kenny's career, he has managed his career himself, from finding sponsors, negotiating contracts to winning races.

Formula racing

He raced in Britain and Sweden in Formula Ford and Formula 3 (he was Swedish junior Formula Ford Champion in 1986), in Europe in Formula Opel Lotus, in Scandinavia and Europe in the Renault Clio Cup (Scandinavian Champion 1992) and in the USA in the Barber Saab Pro Series (Champion in 1993).

1994 he competed in European Formula 3000. 1995 he finished 3rd in the European F3000 championship for Madgwick Racing. In 1996 he was Arrows Formula 1 test driver but decided to leave the team after mid season concentrating on his European F3000 campaign. Despite winning the last race on the road, after a controversial Clerk of the Course decision he eventually was disqualified from the event and had to settle for the runner-up position in the championship, driving for the British team Super Nova. Had he not been disqualified, Brack would have been champion.

First Appearance in the IRL

Brack began his IRL career in 1997. He won the IRL championship in 1998, and the 1999 Indianapolis 500 driving for American racing legend A. J. Foyt. The following year he left Foyt's team to compete in the CART FedEx Championship Series.

CART career

Kenny Bräck
CART World Series
Years active 2000-2002
Teams Team Rahal
Chip Ganassi Racing
Starts 59
Wins 5
Poles 7
Best finish 2nd in 2001
Awards
2000 CART Rookie of the Year

In 2000, he switched to the CART circuit with Team Rahal-Letterman winning the Rookie of the Year title that year. He finished 2nd in the driver's championship in 2001, winning a season-high 4 victories and 6 pole positions.

In 2001 Bräck also had a minor role in the Hollywood motion picture Driven, which starred Sylvester Stallone and Burt Reynolds.

In 2002, Bräck raced for Chip Ganassi Racing, and he ended the season by winning the CART season finale Mexico City G.P.

IROC

In 2001 he competed in the International Race of Champions series in the season called IROC XXV. The series is an invitation-only stock car invitational in the United States. He was finished third in the championship, the highest points position for a non-stock car driver.

Return to IRL

Bräck moved back to the IRL in 2003 with previous CART owner, Bobby Rahal and his Rahal Letterman Racing team. Brack scored 2nd place in the race at the Twin Ring Motegi circuit in Japan. In the final race at Texas Motor Speedway, he suffered a serious crash that almost cost him his life. His car locked wheels with Tomas Scheckter's, flew into the catch fencing, and broke apart. Kenny's crash saw the highest recorded g-forces since the introduction of crash violence recording systems, peaking at 214 g's.[1] He suffered multiple fractures, breaking his sternum, femur, shattering a vertebra in his spine and crushing his ankles. He spent 18 months recovering from his injuries.

He made his comeback to the 2005 Indianapolis 500, replacing an injured Buddy Rice (who, ironically, had replaced Bräck in 2003). He set the fastest qualification time in the field with an average speed of 227.598 mph (366.283 km/h). He retired from the race with a mechanical problem.

Retirement

As of 2006, Bräck lives in Belgium and has retired from open wheel racing, although he manages young open wheel racing drivers such as Marcus Ericsson. Bräck also spends his time currently as the lead member and song writer of his rock band "Bräck", together with lead singer Franc Aledia. At the 2007 Indianapolis 500 the band Bräck cooperated with the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in celebrating American racing legend A. J. Foyt as part of his 50th anniversary at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. In May 2007 the band released its first album "Greatest hits, volume 1" featuring the song "Legend of the Speedway". A rock video, featuring Foyt's Indianapolis winning cars including the car Bräck won the race with in 1999 while driving for Foyt was also recorded. The video was directed by Allen Farst of Niche Productions, Dayton, Ohio.

Kenny is also on the board of directors of Scandinavia's biggest distributor of car spare parts "Mekonomen", listed on the Swedish stock exchange.

X-Games

In 2009, 4 years after retiring from IndyCar racing Kenny made a surprise return to the wheel after receiving a special invitation to compete in the annual ESPN X Games 15 in Los Angeles. Kenny drove an Olsberg Ford Fiesta prepared by Swedish team Andreas Ericsson Motorsport. Kenny was the fastest qualifier and went on to win the competition outright in a head-to-head final against previous Rally Gold Medal winner and nine time overall X-Games Gold Medal winner Travis Pastrana. Kenny became the first specially invited driver to win the Rally Gold Medal. The late WRC star Colin McRae previously held the top spot with a second place finish.

Indy 500 results

Year Chassis Engine Start Finish Team
1997 G-Force Oldsmobile 15th 33rd Galles Racing
1998 Dallara Oldsmobile 3rd 6th A.J. Foyt Enterprises
1999 Dallara Oldsmobile 8th 1st A.J. Foyt Enterprises
2002 G-Force Chevrolet 21st 11th Chip Ganassi Racing
2003 Dallara Honda 6th 16th Rahal Letterman Racing
2005 Panoz Honda 23rd 26th Rahal Letterman Racing

References

External links

Sporting positions
Preceded by
Robert Amren
Barber Saab Pro Series Champion
1993
Succeeded by
Diego Guzmán
Preceded by
Tony Stewart
Pep Boys Indy Racing League Champion
1998
Succeeded by
Greg Ray
Preceded by
Eddie Cheever
Indianapolis 500 Winner
1999
Succeeded by
Juan Pablo Montoya
Preceded by
Juan Pablo Montoya
CART Rookie of the Year
2000
Succeeded by
Scott Dixon
Awards
Preceded by
Helio Castroneves
Scott Brayton Award
2005
Succeeded by
Sam Hornish, Jr.
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