Alex Palou The Favorite to Win the 2023 Indianapolis 500

Quinn Allen
By , Updated on: May 25, 2023 08:00 PM
Alex Palou The Favorite to Win the 2023 Indianapolis 500
  • What: Indianapolis 500
  • When: Sunday, May 28th
  • Where: Indianapolis Motor Speedway

One of the most significant motorsport events in the world will be on Sunday as the 107th edition of the Indianapolis 500 is set to take center stage at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. This is the IndyCar Series's premier race and has the nickname "The Greatest Spectacle in Racing" for just how popular and entertaining it is every year. Swede Marcus Ericsson is the reigning champion and will again be a contender. As for the favorite, that is Alex Palou (+600), followed by Pato O'Ward (+750), Scott Dixon (+800), Alexander Rossi (+1000), Rinus Veekay (+1000), and Ericcson at +1100. Continue reading for the Indianapolis 500 picks.

Before we get into the preview, odds, and predictions, check out the best Formula 1 online betting sites if you're also into the sport.

Indianapolis 500 Odds

Alex Palou+600+550+550
Pato O'Ward+750+600+750
Scott Dixon+800+850+750
Alexander Rossi+1000+1200+1200
Rinus Veekay+1000+1200+1400
Marcus Ericcson+1100+1200+1200
Felix Rosenqvist+1200+1400+1000
Santino Ferrucci+1200+1200+1500
Takuma Sato+1200+1000+1000
Scott McLaughlin+1600+1800+1200
Will Power+1600+1600+1600

Format & History

Indianapolis 500 is a total of 500 miles, hence the name. Drivers go around the 2.5-mile-long asphalt track a total of 200 times. There are four turns in this race.

The most successful team at Indy 500 is Penske with 18 titles. As for the most successful drivers, AJ Foyt, Helio Castroneves, Rick Mears, and Al Unser have all won it four times apiece.

Here are the last 10 winners:

  • 2022 - Marcus Ericsson (Sweden)
  • 2021 - Helio Castroneves (Brazil)
  • 2020 - Takuma Sato (Japan)
  • 2019 - Simon Pagenaud (France)
  • 2018 - Will Power (Australia)
  • 2017 - Takuma Sato (Japan)
  • 2016 - Alexander Rossi (USA)
  • 2015 - Juan Pablo Montoya (Colombia)
  • 2014 - Ryan Hunter-Reay (USA)
  • 2013 - Tony Kanaan (Brazil)
  • 2012 - Dario Franchitti (UK)

The USA has the most Indy 500 wins with 74. The UK and Brazil both have eight apiece. Sato has two victories at Indianapolis and cannot be counted out Sunday.


Alex Palou (+600)

It's not exactly surprising that Palou is the frontrunner to win. He's in first place in the IndyCar Series standings with 174 points, notching one victory, four top-fives, and five top-10 finishes. To boot, Palou put together a historic qualifying race and will start in pole position on Sunday. He was ninth in this race last year but was in contention for a lot of it, even leading for 47 laps. The Spaniard won the GMR Grand Prix on this track on May 13th. Palou is a Swiss Army knife, also serving as a reserve for McLaren in F1. There's no shortage of familiarity for him here.

Pato O'Ward (+750)

Although O'Ward hasn't won yet in the 2023 campaign, he's put together some impressive performances. He's notched four top-five and four top-10 finishes. He was second in the GMR Grand Prix behind Palou earlier in the month and just narrowly missed out on top spot. He's locked down second place three times already and almost always finds the podium in some shape or form. O'Ward has finished sixth, fourth, and second in three career appearances at Indianapolis 500.

Takuma Sato (+1200)

Sato might be at +1200, but his Indy 500 resume speaks for itself. Sato just oozes success in Speedway, collecting wins in 2017 and 2020, both with different teams. Now he's with a third, so why can't he do it again? Sato also appears to win every third year, so 2023 would fit perfectly. However, Sato is off to a very tough start this season with just five points. Maybe he's running out of gas.

Marcus Ericsson (+1100)

You have to mention the reigning champion. Ericsson is also having a good season right now, sitting in third place and just 19 points off Palou. He won at St. Petersburg, came third at Long Beach, and finished eighth at both Texas and the Indy Grand Prix two weeks ago. Just given his past success, you have to consider Ericsson in your Indianapolis 500 picks.

Rinus Veekay (+1000)

Veekay finished on the front row in Indy 500 qualifying for the third straight year last weekend and he's previously earned a top-five finish and podium finish at this race. Although Veekay isn't having the best season, he is evidently comfortable on this track. Plus, he also won here on the road course before. Perhaps that's why his odds aren't too steep.

Josef Newgarden (+1600)

Newgarden is an intriguing driver. He has a lot of experience and currently sits sixth in the IndyCar Series standings with 131 points. Newgarden won the Grand Prix at Texas in thrilling fashion, the second race of the year. He's not always the most consistent, but Newgarden has finished within the top-five at Indy 500 before. If not a victory, maybe a podium spot is in the cards.

Indianapolis 500 Picks

There are a couple of bets worth it here. First, I'd take O'Ward for a top-three finish because he's already been a runner-up three times in 2023 and was second last year in this race. Next, we'll go with the favorite in Palou to win his very first Indianapolis 500 after winning the road course and then also dominating qualifying. Lock these picks in for Sunday's action, which should be an absolute treat for fans.

Pato O'Ward to finish top-three At Indianapolis 500
Alex Palou To win Indianapolis 500

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Meet the author

Quinn Allen

Quinn Allen leverages his broadcast journalism degree and passion for sports in his betting previews and analysis. Based in Kelowna, Canada, he has emerged as an expert voice with picks featured on OSB, MTS, SBD, and as a ClutchPoints editor. With a lifelong fandom of...

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