Power Wins at Pocono

Photo Credit: IndyCar

Team Penske’s Will Power, who drives a Chevrolet-powered car, has won the postponed Verizon IndyCar Series race, the ABC Supply 500, at Pocono Raceway in Long Pond, Pennsylvania after 200 laps of excitement around the 2.5-mile tri-oval.

The race was originally scheduled to be run yesterday at 3:09 PM ET, but there were heavy rains that poured down over the track that just would not go away, thus making it impossible for the track to dry at any point in time yesterday to potentially allow the race to go on yesterday with just a delay.

Today’s win at Pocono is Power’s 4th of the season and 29th of his career. This race also marks the 6th consecutive race in which he has finished in the top 2, with this race being his 4th win during that span. Power has also closed to within 20 points behind championship lead Simon Pagenaud, who is Power’s teammate.

The race featured a total of 31 lead changes among 9 different drivers. Polesitter Mikhail Aleshin led the most laps of the race after leading 87 of the 200 laps. He ended up finishing the race in 2nd place as the highest finisher of a Honda-powered car. Power’s margin of victory over Aleshin was 1.1459 seconds.

The race also featured a total of 4 caution flag periods, which was very low compared to the 12 caution flag periods that took place at Pocono last season. The first caution flag of the race came out on lap 2 when Takuma Sato spun in turn 3 and made contact with the SAFER barrier.

The second caution flag of the race came out lap 64 when Alexander Rossi made contact with Charlie Kimball on pit road, sending Rossi’s car flying up over the cockpit of Helio Castroneves’ car to create a low-speed but frightening incident in which no one suffered any major injuries.

The third caution flag of the race came out lap 158 when championship points leader Simon Pagenaud lost control of his car in turn 1 and hit hard into the outside wall before coming down across the track and hitting the inside retaining barrier.

The final caution flag came out on lap 176 when a piece of debris from Tony Kanaan’s rear wing assembly came off of his car and dropped onto the track.

The most dominant car of the race was perhaps the backup car of Ryan Hunter-Reay. Hunter-Reay crashed in the first practice session, and his backup car was unable to be prepared in time for the race by the Andretti Autosport team, so Hunter-Reay had to start the race from back in 22nd place.

Hunter-Reay ended up working his way through the field to lead 31 laps of the race before having an issue with his car that made him slow down and drive through the pits without stopping for service as he worked on resolving the issue on his own with only communication from his engineer, who did not know what was going on or why Hunter-Reay had come into the pits. When Hunter-Reay came back out onto the track, he was no longer on the lead lap.

But the caution flag flew on lap 176 because of a piece of debris on the track, and Hunter-Reay got back onto the lead lap by pitting one lap later than all of the cars on the lead lap did and was now back in the mix. He ended up driving through the field once more to finish in 3rd place. Josef Newgarden and Sebastien Bourdais rounded out the top 5. You can see full race results at IndyCar.com

The next Verizon IndyCar Series race will be a continuation of the suspended race from Sunday, June 12th at Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth, Texas. The race was suspended after 71 laps due to rain, so the final 177 laps of the 248-lap event will be held this Saturday night, August 27th. The race will be broadcast on NBC Sports Network starting at 9 PM ET.

James Hinchcliffe currently leads that race (and has technically done so for almost 2 and a half months now) with Ryan Hunter-Reay and Mikhail Aleshin rounding out the top 3 positions. All 3 of those drivers drive Honda-powered cars.

-Asher Fair