Will Power won the Verizon IndyCar Series Rainguard Water Sealers 600 at Texas Motor Speedway

Will Power streaks across the start-finish line during the Rainguard Water Sealers 600 at Texas Motor Speedway — Photo by: Chris Owens

Starting from 9th place Car 12 Will Power, Chevrolet, won the Verizon IndyCar Series Rainguard Water Sealers 600 at Texas Motor Speedway. 2nd Place Car 10 Tony Kanaan, Honda, started from 4th place followed by 3rd place Car 1 Simon Pagenaud, Chevrolet, started from 12th place.

Will Power and Team Penske win the 2017 Rainguard Water Sealers 600 at Texas Motor Speedway — Photo by: Chris Owens

4th Place Car 15 Graham Rahal, Honda, started from 1tth place followed by 5th place Car 88 Gabby Chaves, Chevrolet, started from 20th place. 6th Place Car 27 Marco Andretti, Honda, started from 15th place followed by 7th place Car 4 Conor Daly, Chevrolet, started from 21st place. 8th Place Car 8 Max Chilton, Honda, started from 6th place followed by 9th place Car 9 Scott Dixon, Honda,
started from 2nd place. Lastly in the Top 10 was Car 26 Takuma Sato, Honda, in 10th place, started from 8th place.

Will Power and Scott Dixon go wheel-to-wheel across the start-finish line during the Rainguard Water Sealers 600 at Texas Motor Speedway — Photo by: Chris Owens

The race had 9 Cautions for 66 laps: 1st Caution on lap 37 for Contact: Car 98 Alexander Rossi, Honda in Turn 3. 2nd Caution on lap 91 for Contact: Car 3 Helio Castroneves, Chevrolet in Turn 2. 3rd Caution on lap 103 for Spin: Car 20 Ed Carpenter, Chevrolet in Turn 1. 4th Caution on lap 138 for Debris. 5th Caution on lap 152 for Contact: Multiple Cars in Turn 3. 6th Caution on lap 190 for Competition Yellow. 7th Caution on lap 201 for Contact: Car 2 Josef Newgarden, Chevrolet in Turn 4. 8th Caution on lap 225 for Competition Yellow. 9th Caution on lap 244 for Contact: Car 9 Scott Dixon, Honda, Car 26 Takuma Sato, Honda, Car 8 Max Chilton, Honda and Car 4 Conor Daly, Chevrolet in Turn 1.

Josef Newgarden makes contact with the Turn 4 wall during the Rainguard Water Sealers 600 at Texas Motor Speedway — Photo by: Chris Owens

The race had 23 Lead changes among 7 drivers. Lap Leaders: Kimball 1-15, Vautier 16, Kimball 17-22, Vautier 23, Kimball 24-28, Vautier 29-40, Newgarden 41-46, Power 47-57, Vautier 58, Power 59-111, Kanaan 112, Power 113-140, Chilton 141-148, Power 149-192, Dixon 193-197, Power 198-231, Dixon 232-234, Power 235-236, Dixon 237, Power 238, Dixon 239-240, Power 241, Dixon 242, Power 243-248.

Will Power comes in for tires and fuel on pit lane during the Rainguard Water Sealers 600 at Texas Motor Speedway — Photo by: Chris Owens

Verizon IndyCar Series point standings: Dixon 326, Pagenaud 313, Sato 312, Castroneves 305, Power 286, Rahal 283, Newgarden 277, Kanaan 264, Rossi 254, Hinchcliffe 232.

Charlie Kimball and Tristan Vautier go wheel-to-wheel down the backstretch during the Rainguard Water Sealers 600 at Texas Motor Speedway — Photo by: Chris Owens

Power wins wild one at Texas for 31st career victory

FORT WORTH, Texas (Saturday, June 10, 2017) – Will Power survived a Wild West night of racing at Texas Motor Speedway to win the Rainguard Water Sealers 600 and join a pair of greats on the all-time Indy car victory list.

The Team Penske driver won the incident-filled race on the 1.5-mile oval, taking the checkered flag in the No. 12 Verizon Chevrolet under caution ahead of second-place Tony Kanaan in the No. 10 NTT Data Honda from Chip Ganassi Racing.

The victory is the 31st in Indy cars for the 36-year-old Australian, tying him with Dario Franchitti and Paul Tracy for ninth all time. It is also his second win this season and second at Texas Motor Speedway.

“Over the moon to win here,” Power said. “My second home and my wife is from here, so we spend a lot of time down here, so just an amazing feeling.”

The frenetic Verizon IndyCar Series race featured 23 lead changes among seven drivers, though Power led a race-high 180 of the 248 laps. He won under the last of nine caution periods after four cars – including Takuma Sato and Scott Dixon battling for second place right behind Power – were involved in a crash in Turn 1 on Lap 244.

Power’s win is the ninth at Texas Motor Speedway for Team Penske and the legendary team’s record 191st victory in Indy car history.

“It was a matter of getting to the front,” said Power, who started ninth in the 22-car field. “We talked about that in our pre-race strategy meeting, that track position is going to be everything because I know whoever would have the lead and (stay on) the bottom of the track would be very difficult to pass.”

Kanaan finished second despite being levied a 20-second stop-and-hold penalty after being involved in the largest incident of the race. On Lap 152, Kanaan, Hinchcliffe and Mikhail Aleshin went three wide into Turn 3. The cars of Kanaan and Hinchcliffe touched, ricocheting Hinchcliffe into Aleshin and triggering a mishap involving nine cars. No one was injured.

The race was red-flagged for 30 minutes while the Holmatro Safety Team and track workers cleaned up debris. When the race was restarted, Kanaan went down two laps after serving the penalty, but lawed his way back onto the lead lap to secure a season-best second-place finish and his fourth podium showing in the past five Texas races.

“There was a bump going into Turn 3 there and I guess I moved up, and I really have to apologize to Hinch,” Kanaan said. “I don’t do those kind of things. I race people clean and I want people to race me clean. It was definitely an honest mistake.

“Got a penalty, paid a penalty and we finished second, so I guess it is what it is.”

For the final 90 laps of the race, INDYCAR mandated competition cautions after every 30 green-flag laps so teams could change tires to account for abnormal tire wear on some entries, due in part to the newly repaved track surface.

A statement from INDYCAR, read, in part: “This action has been taken out of an abundance of caution as race conditions presented different conditions than seen in earlier tests.”

Dixon retained the Verizon IndyCar Series championship lead despite finishing ninth after being collected by the spinning Sato on Lap 244. The Chip Ganassi Racing driver sits atop the standings after nine of 17 races with 326 points. Simon Pagenaud, who finished third in the race, is second with 313 points, Sato is third at 312, Helio Castroneves fourth with 305 and Power fifth at 286.

The next Verizon IndyCar Series race is the KOHLER Grand Prix at Road America on June 25. The race airs live at 12:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN and the Advance Auto Parts INDYCAR Radio Network.

Charlie Kimball leads the field into Turn 1 to start the Rainguard Water Sealers 600 at Texas Motor Speedway — Photo by: Chris Owens

James Hinchcliffe leads a group into Turn 1 during the Rainguard Water Sealers 600 at Texas Motor Speedway — Photo by: Chris Owens

“What They’re Saying” from the Rainguard Water Sealers 600 race

SIMON PAGENAUD (No. 1 DXC Technology Team Penske Chevrolet, 2016 Verizon IndyCar Series champion): “It was very much pack racing, so we were trying to get away from the pack, which we did for quite a while. It was a way also to save some fuel and stay behind (Will Power). I was trying to protect him so that we could just go as fast as we could, and it worked out really well. At the end there, I was hoping we were going to go a little longer because I had a really good car. It was a lot of fun. It got a little crazy at the end. I tell you, it is just incredible how close we can race against each other. Good fun, good night, awesome working with Will. That is Team Penske, we all work together, you guys don’t believe us, but we do and we showed it tonight.”

JOSEF NEWGARDEN (No. 2 hum by Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet): “It was definitely a bad decision. It seemed OK…we just got loose. It’s hard to tell if that’s what it was or not, probably going third lane was not a right idea. I was just trying to get some space with (Scott) Dixon, I didn’t know exactly where he was going to go. I probably could have backed out of it sooner and realized it’s not going to be good up there. It’s just my fault. I feel bad for the guys on the No. 2 car. With everything we have been doing, hum by Verizon on the vehicle with us, we’ve had fast cars and it’s always a shame when you make a mistake for your guys. I put that on me, just trying to race hard, and the third lane wasn’t there, so we didn’t have it tonight.”

CONOR DALY (No. 4 ABC Supply AJ Foyt Racing Chevrolet): “That was crazy. I think the biggest thing tonight is that I learned a lot. That was the first time ever on an oval that I raced side-by-side or that close to anyone. (Indianapolis Motor Speedway) we’re never like that and last year I didn’t make it through much of the race. It was a huge level of experience gain. We made progress on the
car all the way through and on the last stint, I thought we were really in contention for a top five. We were right in the fight which was really fun. I’ve never experienced any racing like that in my life. Really enjoyed it. It was crazy to spin at the end, but we kept going, so overall just a nice day for us to make it through and survive. I think my guys did a great job – tonight was a lot of work in the pits – we were adjusting the car every stop so I have to thank them for all their work.”

JAMES HINCHCLIFFE (No. 5 Arrow Schmidt Peterson Motorsports Honda): “We had a run on (Tony Kanaan) and he had plenty of room on the left, but he just came to the right. If you look at the replay, he comes all the way from the white line to the middle of the racetrack, just pinched me into Mikhail (Aleshin). Either his spotter didn’t tell him we were three wide or what, but I couldn’t go anywhere, I was sandwiched in the middle. I was not expecting him to do that; Tony has more experience in this kind of pack racing than anybody. I went wheel-to-wheel with him last year for the win and nine times out of 10 would do that all day long, but for whatever reason, he wasn’t playing very nice today and wrecked a lot of good equipment. It turned into way more of a pack race than we’ve had here in a long time, which unfortunately, leads to situations like this. A lot of good cars taken out, but I’m glad everybody’s OK. We had such a good car. We had that penalty after I looped it in pit lane, but then we raced our way back to the lead lap; we were side-by-side with Will (Power) and we had the car in the top five. The Arrow Electronics car was just incredible and that last pit stop from the Schmidt Peterson Motorsports guys was just great, it’s just a super frustrating way to end a day that was going as well as that in this fashion. I just feel bad for the Arrow Electronics boys because we had two good cars that got taken out today.”

MIKHAIL ALESHIN (No. 7 SMP Racing Schmidt Peterson Honda): “Well, the thing is I was much faster than the guys on the lower line. I thought we were all going to stay together up there, but I think James (Hinchcliffe) touched (Tony) Kanaan – I don’t know the reason for that – then we basically all crashed. I thought we could make it three lanes up there. I didn’t understand what was going on, ecause I gave space to them, but something was going on with James and Kanaan. In the end, you know, what we have is two great cars that ended up in the wall and that’s just dumb. It’s stupid and I’m very disappointed in regards to the shape of the team this weekend. We could have been in the top spot today.”

MAX CHILTON (No. 8 Gallagher Honda): “That was a wild ride in Texas. I was hanging on for 200 laps, then the car started to come to me. Luckily half the field was taken out and it was easy to get into the mix because of attrition. With 20 (laps) to go we were competitive. Unfortunately with the incident, I collected (Scott) Dixon in the aftermath of that accident and that ended it for the
Gallagher car.”

TONY KANAAN (No. 10 NTT Data Honda): “It was a tough night, just very intense from the first to the last lap. I’m going to apologize to (James Hinchcliffe) for what happened – I just got up a little too high. We paid the price for my mistake. We got a penalty, paid the penalty, and we were able to finish second. I’m proud of the team for sticking with me and fighting our way back up front. It was just an intense race. A lot of things happened and you had to avoid a lot of things to finish. I’m not going to lie, I’m glad it’s over.”

WILL POWER (No. 12 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet, 2017 Rainguard Water Sealers 600 winner): “It was very intense. I could see (Scott) Dixon was able to pass me at the start/finish line. So, I was starting to think about what I was going to do there at the end. Phenomenal job by the guys in the pits. I am so stoked, so happy for Verizon. Shows you how good that Chevy engine is, man, it was
super fast tonight. I’m so stoked to win in my second home, where my wife (Liz) is from, Texas. All the family is here, it just feels awesome.”

CARLOS MUNOZ (No. 14 ABC Supply AJ Foyt Racing Chevrolet): “I’m proud of my team. From yesterday’s mistake, we wanted to go to the front and we were coming. We were in the top 10 most of the time and looking pretty good. On ovals, you have everyone in a pack and when there’s a crash in front of you, there’s nothing you can do. I couldn’t avoid crashing. It’s racing, it’s ovals. This is my
first crash on an oval, so I guess there’s always a first time. I was proud of my team, we were running pretty good and staying with the leaders. It’s a shame.”

GRAHAM RAHAL (No. 15 Mi-Jack / Bobby Rahal Automotive Honda, 2016 Rainguard Water Sealers 600 winner): “It was a crazy night with a lot of guys taking a lot of chances. After Indy and after this race, drivers need to have to take a deep breath and realize that this is dangerous stuff. I’m glad that our car doesn’t have a ding on it. We weren’t the prettiest thing out here tonight, but the Mi-Jack boys worked very hard and I’m pleased with the end result. We raised a lot of money for Turns for Troops and our United Rentals initiative. I would have liked to have won it, and I actually felt like I had the car to do it, but I struggled with track position all night and I got lucky to not get involved in all those crashes. I’m obviously disappointed in myself to stall on that last stop, but I’m probably lucky because I cleared the incident right after that. We got lucky to miss and avoid those crashes because all of them were right in front of me. I’m looking forward to Road America, which should be a good one for us. Coming off three top fives in a row, hopefully we can go have another good points race with a good result.”

TRISTAN VAUTIER (No. 18 Dale Coyne Racing Honda): “I think I showed everything I could tonight. I gave it my all and I raced really hard. I’m happy we maximized everything, it’s just a shame to be taken out by something out of our control, and the team really did not need another crash because of all of the crash damage they already had. I tried my best to avoid that and race well. Sometimes
you can’t do anything about it.”

ED JONES (No. 19 Boy Scouts of America Honda): “The guys were trying to run three wide, I think Tony (Kanaan) didn’t leave them enough room. So they crashed, I backed off and hit the brakes, and then I got collected from behind and there’s nothing I could do about that. It put me in the wall and game over. Super frustrating to the team, two extremely fast cars, came from 19th and I think
we had a chance to win that one. That’s what hurts most.” (About how frustrating is it that their cars were so fast and yet got collected in the incident) “I feel bad for Dale (Coyne, team owner). Dale’s put so much work into this team. We’ve been so quick this year, but we’ve had a lot of incidents – this is my first incident. It’s painful, but he keeps coming back and coming back stronger every time.”

ED CARPENTER (No. 20 Fuzzy’s Vodka Chevrolet): “It was a wild night. We overcame a lot of adversity. First the spin – I was hoping for a spin and win! – and then got caught up in that big one. But there’s no quit in Ed Carpenter Racing. As many cars as were crashed out, we figured we’d patch it back up and salvage some points. You collect points all year long and you never know what a night
like tonight might do at the end of the year for the entrant championship standings for both the No. 20 and the No. 21. I’m proud of the Fuzzy’s Vodka guys putting in the extra work. The easiest thing to do would have been packing up and heading home. I’m thankful for the drive of this team, getting back out there and finishing with both cars. There was a lot of tore up stuff tonight, but all things considered we got out of it alright for crashing twice. But it was really unfortunate, I think we could have raced with those guys at the end. We just had too many things happen, but that’s the way it goes.”

JR HILDEBRAND (No. 21 Fuzzy’s Vodka Chevrolet): “Huge credit to the team for recognizing that there was an opportunity to fix the car, get back out, and pick up some positions. The Fuzzy’s Vodka crew killed it. With no setup pad, the car that I rolled back out there with could have competed for a top-five finish today with no problem. I’m really proud of the guys. It is a big confidence boost for everyone, the day goes totally sideways and we’re able to end on a positive note which always feels good. Ed (Carpenter) and I were both able to take advantage of the team doing awesome work. Hopefully this kind of gets us on a bit of momentum heading into the rest of the year, we have a lot of racing left to do. It is a bummer not to get a much better finish that we easily could have gotten today, regardless of the carnage, but it makes us all feel good about what we can do from here on out.”

TAKUMA SATO (No. 26 Andretti Autosport Honda): “It’s disappointing. We had a very good car the second half of the race. It was an unfortunate situation – I had a car in front of me and a car to my right, I got two tires in the grass, bottomed out and there was nowhere for me to go from that. We just ran out of track. All the cars were battling for position and constantly moving. It was an exciting race for sure, and I am disappointed it ended the way it did.”

MARCO ANDRETTI (No. 27 Andretti Autosport Honda): “It was absolute mayhem – a crapshoot whether you got through it. The good Lord was looking after us probably about 50 times tonight. It was pretty crazy. It was a survival type day, we had a one-lane car so I couldn’t really pass cars. We were fast, but every time I go the run and popped out for the pass, we just lost grip. It was like one-
and-a-half lanes out there, the second lane just never came in.”

RYAN HUNTER-REAY (No. 28 DHL Honda): “I don’t know what I need to do here to get things right, but we had a good car early on then came in and made a downforce adjustment and then I completely missed the compensation on the front wing and then I went straight to the back. We spent the rest of the night trying to claw back, just missing the whole downforce front grip equation. We started getting going there, then this deal happened. There were guys making too many moves out there late into the corner. I will save my opinion for after I look at it. I came down, there were cars spinning and sparks everywhere. I went for the apron, I kind of high-sided a bit, and I was just a passenger from there. There was no where to go. You can’t jump all over the brakes from these cars
once you are doing 220mph into the corner, there’s not a whole lot of places to go.”

CHARLIE KIMBALL (No. 83 Tresiba Honda): “I’m obviously gutted for the Novo Nordisk Chip Ganassi Racing guys. We had such a good day yesterday winning the pole and we had a lot of momentum heading into today’s race. The No. 83 Tresiba Honda was really fast and I believe we had a good chance to win tonight, which makes it even more frustrating that a mechanical failure ended our day. The guys did everything they could to get the 83 back out on track, but it just wasn’t in the cards for us. This one really hurts. I’m glad we have a weekend to regroup and get our heads back in the game
for Road America.”

GABBY CHAVES (No. 88 Harding Group Chevrolet): “We did what we had to do. We kept our nose clean. We had a solid car. I think before the accidents, we were inside the top 12. We had great Chevy power until the end, and just made the passes when we had to. Just really proud of the team effort.”

ALEXANDER ROSSI (No. 98 Andretti Autosport/Curb Honda): “Our car started off struggling a little bit but then as the high-line started coming in we were getting better. It’s unfortunate because our car was getting good and the track was coming in and I think it was going to turn out to be a decent night. I went to pass Tony (Kanaan) on the inside of (Turn) 3 and we were three wide… and
there are two lanes here but there aren’t three.”

Rainguard Water Sealers 600 race results

FORT WORTH, Texas – Results Saturday of the Rainguard Water Sealers 600 Verizon IndyCar Series event on the 1.5-mile Texas Motor Speedway, with order of finish, starting position in parentheses, car #, driver, aero kit-engine, laps completed and reason out (if any):

1. (9) Car 12 Will Power, Chevrolet, 248, Running
2. (4) Car 10 Tony Kanaan, Honda, 248, Running
3. (12) Car 1 Simon Pagenaud, Chevrolet, 248, Running
4. (11) Car 15 Graham Rahal, Honda, 248, Running
5. (20) Car 88 Gabby Chaves, Chevrolet, 248, Running
6. (15) Car 27 Marco Andretti, Honda, 248, Running
7. (21) Car 4 Conor Daly, Chevrolet, 247, Running
8. (6) Car 8 Max Chilton, Honda, 245, Running
9. (2) Car 9 Scott Dixon, Honda, 243, Contact
10. (8) Car 26 Takuma Sato, Honda, 243, Contact
11. (14) Car 20 Ed Carpenter, Chevrolet, 224, Contact
12. (18) Car 21 JR Hildebrand, Chevrolet, 215, Running
13. (17) Car 2 Josef Newgarden, Chevrolet, 201, Contact
14. (16) Car 5 James Hinchcliffe, Honda, 151, Contact
15. (7) Car 7 Mikhail Aleshin, Honda, 151, Contact
16. (5) Car 18 Tristan Vautier, Honda, 151, Contact
17. (19) Car 19 Ed Jones, Honda, 151, Contact
18. (22) Car 14 Carlos Munoz, Chevrolet, 151, Contact
19. (13) Car 28 Ryan Hunter-Reay, Honda, 151, Contact
20. (10) Car 3 Helio Castroneves, Chevrolet, 90, Contact
21. (1) Car 83 Charlie Kimball, Honda, 41, Mechanical
22. (3) Car 98 Alexander Rossi, Honda, 36, Contact

 

Race Statistics
Winner’s average speed: 140.491 mph
Time of Race: 2:32:31.0118
Margin of victory: Under caution
Time of Race: 02:32:31.0118 Avg Speed: 140.491 mph Margin of Victory: Under caution Lead Changes: 23 Caution Laps: 66
Cautions: 9 for 66 laps
Lead changes: 23 among 7 drivers
Fastest Lap: 224.594 mph (23.0816 seconds) on Lap 232 by 10 – Tony Kanaan
Fastest Leader Lap: 218.474 mph (23.7282 seconds) on Lap 187 by 12 – Will Power
Verizon P1 Award: Charlie Kimball (46.5861 seconds, 222.556 mph)
Legend: R = Sunoco Rookie of the Year candidate; All cars use fourth-generation Verizon IndyCar Series chassis (IR-12) with Chevrolet or Honda aerodynamic bodywork and Firestone tires

Next Race: June 25 KOHLER Grand Prix at Road America

IndyCar
http://www.indycar.com/
Graphics & Photos Courtesy of Indycar

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