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Indianapolis 500 off to a hot start

Indianapolis, IN (Sports Network) - With air temperatures already reaching 86 degrees, the green flag waved for the start of the Indianapolis 500 at 12:19 p.m. local time.

The weather forecast at Indianapolis Motor Speedway on Sunday called for temperatures soaring up to 96 degrees, with track temperatures reaching over 140 degrees.

Ryan Briscoe from Team Penske led the field of 33-cars for the start of the 96th running of "The Greatest Spectacle in Racing."

During an emotional pre-race ceremony, car owner Bryan Herta drove Dan Wheldon's 2011 Indy 500-winning car one lap around the famed 2.5-mile oval in a tribute to Wheldon, who lost his life during a multi-car crash that occurred in the early going of the October 16 season-finale at Las Vegas.

Wheldon pulled off a stunning upset in the centennial anniversary of the 500- mile race at Indianapolis last year. His second win in the event came at the expense of then-rookie J.R. Hildebrand, who crashed coming out of the final turn of the last lap while leading.

With the playing of "Taps" and a gun salute, United States Armed Forces personnel on this Memorial Day weekend. were also honored during the Wheldon tribute.

05/27 13:10:50 ET

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