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What is the record for the most yellow flag periods in an Indianapolis 500 race? I can't seem to find any published stats anywhere.

Ideally looking for number of caution lap periods rather than total laps under caution.

1

For the number of cautions (yellow flags), not the number of laps under yellow flag, as you asked, there is a tie between 1997 and 1988, with 14 cautions.

In 1997, these were the cautions:

+---------+------------------------------------------------------------------------------+
|  LAPS   |                                    REASON                                    |
+---------+------------------------------------------------------------------------------+
| 0       | #17 Giaffone, #4 Brack, #77 Gregoire, accident T4                            |
| 10      | #72 Bourbonnais, smoke                                                       |
| 11-14   | Rain                                                                         |
| 15      | Red Flag                                                                     |
| 16-18   | Race restart                                                                 |
| 20-28   | #42 Gordon, stopped T3, #28 Dismore, #7 Salazar, #44 Kinser, acc. T4(Lap 24) |
| 59-62   | #27 Guthrie, stopped                                                         |
| 94-99   | #7 Salazar, stopped T2                                                       |
| 114-123 | #50 Roe, #1 Durant, acc. T3                                                  |
| 137-142 | #40 Miller, acc. T3                                                          |
| 165-169 | #18 Carlson, acc. T2                                                         |
| 189-193 | #44 Kinser, acc. T4                                                          |
| 196-197 | Debris                                                                       |
| 199     | Debris                                                                       |
+---------+------------------------------------------------------------------------------+

And in 1988, these were the cautions:

+---------+------------------------------------------------------------+
|  LAPS   |                           REASON                           |
+---------+------------------------------------------------------------+
| 1-5     | #2 Guerrero, #16 T. Bettenhausen, #91 Brayton, accident T1 |
| 34-39   | #81 Sneva, accident pit entrance                           |
| 58-63   | #14 Foyt, accident T2                                      |
| 64-70   | #71 Heimrath, accident T4                                  |
| 82-88   | #35 Chassey, #29 Vogler, accident T4                       |
| 93-95   | Debris                                                     |
| 102-106 | #9 Sullivan accident T2                                    |
| 109-111 | Rabbit on track                                            |
| 117-120 | #17 Rutherford, accident T1                                |
| 140-145 | #6 Ma. Andretti, tow-in                                    |
| 160-163 | #23 Palmroth, tow-in                                       |
| 167-170 | #48 Moran, pulled off track                                |
| 175-179 | #29 Vogler, accident T3                                    |
| 198-200 | #18 Mi. Andretti, lost sidepod frontstretch                |
+---------+------------------------------------------------------------+

If you don't count the red flag in 1997 (your question title says "yellow flags" but you asked about "cautions", which include red flags) then 1988 is the year with most yellow flags, 14 flags versus 13 in 1997.

Source: https://www.indianapolismotorspeedway.com/events/indy500/history/historical-stats/race-stats/box-scores/2019

  • Excellent answer Gerardo. I'd originally looked at that same page but hadn't scrolled down to see the additional summaries boxes that includes Cautions and rookie of year etc. Did you have to look at each year to get the result or was there a clever was to summarise it? – Greg Sep 6 at 10:35
  • No, the would be too much work! I found another site with the summarised data, but I linked this one as the source because it has the description of laps and reasons for the cautions. – Gerardo Furtado Sep 6 at 22:30
  • Which site did you use Gerardo? – Greg Sep 7 at 20:35
  • 1
    I can't find it again... If I find it I post a comment here. – Gerardo Furtado Sep 8 at 10:03

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