Ryan Hunter-Reay recalls rooting for the Andrettis and Unsers when he was growing up, saying he has always been patriotic.
Now, Hunter-Reay hopes he can give kids in the United States someone to cheer for in open-wheel auto racing.
He became the first American since 2006 to win the Indianapolis 500 and the sixth in two decades.
Soon, he will get two chances to sustain success. The Detroit Grand Prix will feature full-length IndyCar races Saturday and Sunday.
Belle Isle's 13-turn street circuit, which did not hold up well two years ago, will be put to a test by a lot of racing and some patching that was needed because a water main broke this week.