INDIANAPOLIS — Had Dario Franchitti joined the club of four-time winners of the Indianapolis 500 on Sunday, he would have headed to Victory Circle and take a swig of some cold, refreshing milk.
Whole milk, of course.
Helio Castroneves? He prefers 2 percent, just like Indy 500 winner Tony Kanaan.
The American Dairy Association released a milk preference poll for all 33 drivers in this year's race. Sixteen of them are opting for 2 percent, eight are going for whole, four of them chose skim milk, and five couldn't care less – so long as they get to drink it.
The tradition of drinking milk after winning at the Brickyard dates to 1933, when Louis Meyer requested a glass of buttermilk after winning his second career Indianapolis 500. He did the same thing when he won his third race in 1936, but that time got an entire bottle of it.
The following year, a dairy presented a bottle of regular milk to race winner Wilbur Shaw, and the tradition was off and running. There were a couple breaks along the way, but milk has been presented to the race winner every year since 1956 – whole, skim or 2 percent.
Of course, there's been some controversy along the way.
Emerson Fittipaldi went for orange juice after winning his second Indy 500 in 1993, but atoned for his gaffe – mostly to quiet the stir among fans – by drinking milk during the post-race victory celebration.
So, who wanted what in this year's race?
_ WHOLE: Franchitti, Scott Dixon, Katherine Legge, Simon Pagenaud, Will Power, Oriol Servia, Tristan Vautier and E.J. Viso.
_ 2 PERCENT: Castroneves, A.J. Allmendinger, Marco Andretti, Ryan Briscoe, Ed Carpenter, Simona de Silvestro, J.R. Hildebrand, Ryan Hunter-Reay, James Jakes, Kanaan, Carlos Munoz, Josef Newgarden, Graham Rahal, Takuma Sato, Alex Tagliani, Justin Wilson.
_ SKIM: Ana Beatriz, James Hinchcliffe, Charlie Kimball, Pippa Mann.
_ NO PREFERENCE: Townsend Bell, Sebastien Bourdais, Conor Daly, Sebastian Saavedra, Buddy Lazier.