The Indianapolis 500 is one of several races that will leave you planted in front of the TV this Sunday and it’s known for one strange tradition: the winner gets handed a bottle of milk to drink and/or pour all over themselves. Indy 500 drivers even designate their preferred kind of milk before the race. Here’s what your favorite driver wants to drink if they win IndyCar’s big race.
Of particular note is this year’s pole winner and true native Indy son Ed Carpenter, who wants to chug buttermilk if possible for tradition’s sake.
Buttermilk kicked off the milk-drinking tradition after driver Louis Meyer had a glass after winning the 1936 Indy 500. It was just a drink Meyer enjoyed on warm days, but the dairy industry seized on the photos of a buttermilk-sipping Indy 500 winner as a prime marketing opportunity, and started handing bottles of moo-juice out to Indy 500 winners in the years that followed.
Seventeen drivers said they’d prefer whole milk, including Carpenter, as buttermilk isn’t technically an option anymore. Indy 500 rookie Zachary Claman DeMelo and longtime driver with the best name in motorsports Will Power claimed no preference in the poll. Honestly, you could give me soured milk out of a boot up there and I’d be all into it. It’s winning the Indy 500!!!
You’ll also notice that two familiar faces are missing from the list: James Hinchcliffe and Pippa Mann. Both popular drivers were bumped from the race for running too slow to qualify on—pretty obvious name here—Bump Day. It’s a weird place to see Hinchcliffe in particular, as he claimed pole position in 2016 for the 100th running of the Indy 500.
Either way, we sincerely hope Hinch and Pippa use the opportunity to commune with the fans out in the crowds at the race. Party’s in the Coke Lot, guys.