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Podium

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In many forms of motorsport, the three top-placed drivers in a race stand on a podium (plural podia) for the trophy ceremony. In an international series, the national anthem of the winning driver, and the winning team or constructor may be played and the flags of the drivers' countries are hoisted above them.

Following the presentation of the trophies, the drivers will often spray champagne over each other and their team-members watching below, a tradition started by Dan Gurney following the 1967 24 Hours of Le Mans race.[1] The drivers will generally refrain from spraying champagne if a fatality or major accident occurs during the event.

The term has become common parlance in the media, where a driver may be said to "be heading for a podium finish" or "just missing out on a podium" when he is heading for, or just misses out on a top three finish.

The NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, the highest level of stock car racing in the United States, does not have a three-person podium. Instead the winning driver and team celebrate in victory lane.

The IRL IndyCar Series does not use a podium at the Indianapolis 500 or the Bombardier Learjet 550. The Indy 500 has a long tradition of the winning driver and team celebrating in victory lane, while Texas Motor Speedway president Eddie Gossage has stated that victory lane should be reserved for the winner of the race.[2] However, the series does use a podium at all other races.


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