Castroneves runs near-perfect race, ends 2nd again at Indy

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INDIANAPOLIS, IN - MAY 28: Scott Dixon, driver of the #9 Chip Ganassi Racing Honda, Ed Carpenter, driver of the #20 Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet, and Alexander Rossi, driver of the #98 Andretti Herta Autosport Honda, line up to take the green for the start of the 101st running of the Indianapolis 500 on May 28, 2017, at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Khris Hale/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Helio Castroneves knew he needed a perfect race to win the Indianapolis 500 from the No. 19 starting spot.

He almost did it — again.

After barely avoiding two crashes, he failed to make the go-ahead pass on the second-to-last lap of Sunday’s race and the three-time Indianapolis 500 champion wound up settling for his third runner-up finish. The Brazilian also finished second in 2003 and 2014.

Castroneves was 0.2011 seconds behind Japan’s Takuma Sato, and it came on his eighth attempt to get a record-tying fourth 500 win.

Still, it was the brightest moment on the 500 schedule for the usually strong Team Penske. The five-driver pack struggled over the previous two weeks in practice and qualifying.

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