Cheers to a pioneer on the track

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In 1977, Janet Guthrie forced a change to the "Gentlemen, start your engines" Indy tradition.

On this date in 1977, Janet Guthrie became the first woman to compete in Indy 500. Unfortunately, she had to drop out with engine problems and finished 29th. Earlier in 1977, Guthrie became the first woman to compete in the Daytona 500, where she finished 12th. Guthrie returned to the Indy 500 in 1978 and finished ninth. Guthrie, who is now 75, helped pave the way for other women on the track, including Danica Patrick, who topped Guthrie’s mark at Indy in 2005, when she finished fourth. Then in 2009, Patrick posted a record third-place finish at Indy.

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