Penske power continues to overwhelm field at IndyCar GP

Posted May 15, 2017

"You look at the race and you see that there was potential when you see Ryan Hunter-Reay finish third".

Verizon Indycar Series driver Will Power (12) reacts to winning the Indycar Grand Prix at Indianapolis Motor Speedway Road Course.

He led every session from practice to the race at the IndyCar Grand Prix.

You can point at nearly any vehicle in the IndyCar Grand Prix field and come up with a reason why they need to win this race.

Will Power, of Australia, waits in his vehicle during practice for the Grand Prix of Indianapolis IndyCar auto race at Indianapolis Motor Speedway in Indianapolis, May 12, 2017. "But then its started to go the other way and then I thought "we're in good shape here".

Until this weekend, nothing had come easily for Power this season.

Bourdais opened the season with a win at St. Petersburg.

He seemed destined to win at Alabama until a flat tyre forced him to pit and dropped him to 14th.

The result is still Pigot's second top-10 this year - he was eighth at Long Beach.

Helio Castroneves appeared to have the faster auto through the 25 laps compared to his teammate Will Power. Power re-established himself as the record-holder in the second round, with the first official lap of less than 1:08 around the circuit, then bettered it in the Firestone Fast Six to earn the 47th pole of his 13-year Indy vehicle career _ the fifth most all-time.

Four of the five Penske entrants qualified top five or better with Power taking the pole in track-record time of 1:07.7044, almost a full second faster than the old mark he set just a year ago.

But that doesn't mean you should count him out of a race win according to Power. That first stint especially was a lot of fun.

Simon Pagenaud passed Castroneves with a few laps remaining to finish fourth. It is the third straight Grand Prix of Indianapolis race during which Rahal has finished 14 or more positions higher than the one where he started. Pagenaud has finished in the top 5 of all four races this year, including a win in the last race at Phoenix. And James Hinchcliffe finished third in this race previous year.

In 2015, he started the Grand Prix 17th and worked his way up to second. "Then he kept closing", Power said.

Dixon finished as a runner-up for the 35th time, which is No. 4 on IndyCar's all-time list.

"He has six months off and he comes back like nothing happens", said Montoya's teammate Helio Castroneves.

Dixon is fourth in series history with 35 runner-up finishes, and Hunter-Reay wound up in the top three for the 100th time. However, that number probably doesn't do justice to the difficulty of pulling this off in modern times, as you would have expected more new winners when the race itself was still new, and indeed the first five drivers featured below got their win in the first 15 races.

Sebastien Bourdais and Charlie Kimball were the only retirements of the race, with both drivers suffering mechanical failures.

Teammate Ed Jones was barely better, running 19th after needing to avoid spinning Tony Kanaan on the first lap and losing more spots after a botched pit stop.

The Australian took the lead for the final time on Lap 67 with Castroneves sitting on pit lane waiting for four tires.

"I think we unloaded fast and had a good start to the day in practice overall with the NTT Data vehicle", Dixon said. Helio Castroneves led the other 24 laps of the race.