Simon Pagenaud Wins IndyCar Race on Belle Isle, But Lost Mother Duck Steals The Show

By Devin O'Barr
Simon Pagenaud racing in Belle Isle, Detroit
Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

Animals rarely have an impact on professional sports. Sure, the occasional squirrel or seagull will cause a ruckus at a few MLB games, but for the most part they aren’t too big of a pain. With that being said, a certain duck family was inches away from getting split on the racetrack in Belle Isle, Detroit.

The big IndyCar race too place on Sunday, but it was the Friday practice where a mother duck unknowingly led her five children onto a track full of danger. Apparently, the ducks found a way to get onto the blacktop and crossed the roadway, twice!

Luckily, the ducks were escorted away from danger by the officials after the yellow flag came out, and the family was saved.

It’s one thing when insects take center stage during a game, but a family of ducks, really? Whoever is responsible for letting the five ugly ducklings onto the course should have been fired on the spot.

Simon Pagenaud didn’t have an issue with any animals on Sunday though, as the ex-IndyCar rookie of the year crossed the finish line in first place. The race was maligned with crashes on seemingly every turn, but none of them were caused by animals, let alone ducks. In fact, A.J. Allmendinger hit a wall on the opening lap, which triggered the first of six cautions that slowed nearly the first half of the race.

To put it in perspective, the duck family spent more time on the road than the time that separated the Pagenoud from second place, as the France native finished a mere 5.6 seconds in front of James Jakes on Sunday.

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