Will Power wins rain-shortened race at Pocono

After pitting from the lead on Lap 112, Will Power was able to come out ahead of Scott Dixon on the track after the pit stops. Power held on until Lap 128 when the race was red-flagged due to weather conditions including lightning in the area. With threatening skies and lightning around the track, NTT IndyCar officials declared the race official and Power as the winner of the ABC Supply 500.

“If this cloud cover comes over and it doesn’t rain, it’s just not my year,” Power jokingly told NBC Sports. “I’m over the moon, had a few issues during the race and kept coming back. Full credit to the team, great car, kind of hung there and saved fuel, when it was time to go, I went. I was so determined, I really wanted to win. It’ll be my 13th year in a row winning races, I wasn’t thinking about that. I just simply wanted to win a race for Verizon.”

“These guys worked their asses off all year and then, I just hadn’t had the results.”

The ABC Supply 500 got off to a wild start. There was a big wreck in the tunnel turn as Takuma Sato’s car came down on Ryan Hunter-Reay. Alexander Rossi, James Hinchcliffe and Felix Rosenqvist were all involved. Rosenqvist’s car violently went up toward the catch fence while Sato went upside down.

Miraculously, all drivers would be okay but were handed some additional penalties. Rossi, Hinchcliffe and Hunter-Reay each received a 10-lap penalty after working on their cars during the red flag, which is not allowed in IndyCar.

“Takuma (Sato) just turned down on two cars and I was in it,” Rossi told IndyCar Radio. “I don’t know what the point of that was, what he was trying to accomplish. That’s what happened last year, I don’t know why people are making decisions like that. I didn’t get a good start, so it’s on me, I put us in that position. It’s just one of those instances, shouldn’t have been put in that situation, sucks that I did.”

Sato gave his side of the incident.

“Exit Turn 1, Ryan (Hunter-Reay) and I were racing together and the wheels, so Alex (Rossi) probably got something too. We overtook right and left, and there was one little issue. Once it caught them, it jumped on the car and were very crossed together, I kept on steering the wheel straight, but unfortunately, we tangled together.”

Rosenqvist was later sent to a local trauma center for precautionary measures. Later in the broadcast, NBCSN reported that he was medically cleared after the incident.

After a 45 minute red flag, the race resumed after repairs were completed in the Tunnel Turn. The next caution was not until Lap 40 in Turn 1 as Spencer Pigot was involved in an accident. The next caution occurred on Lap 74 for Colton Herta, as he was wrecked off the Tunnel Turn as well. On Lap 88, Rossi returned to the track to collect points.

With the race off to a slow start, it was off to the long green-flag run that normally happens at Pocono. Dixon and Santino Ferrucci were pulling away from the field and the battle was on for the top spot with Power behind them. On Lap 106, green flag pit stops began to take place with Graham Rahal pitting, as well as Ferrucci.

Dixon pitted one lap later on Lap 107, coming out ahead of Ferrucci. However, Power pitted on Lap 108 and came out second. He eventually passed Dixon for the lead on Lap 115. The IndyCar drivers got to race for 13 more laps before lightning was seen within a seven-mile radius.

The cars were brought down pit road in case there was any potential to go back green. That was not the case, however, due to a band of storms approaching. IndyCar officials declared the race official and Power scored his first win of the 2019 season.

Knowing that he was out of the championship hunt at this point in the season, Power was able to focus on winning instead of points racing.

“Yeah, I kind of just let it go,” Power said to NBCSN regarding the championship. “It’s just not going to happen for me this year, just whatever. Still do my homework, we definitely had the car today, great stops, strategy was right. I worked harder this year than any other year. I was very determined, it just didn’t work for me.”

The rain-shortened win was Power’s first victory of the season. It was also the 13th consecutive year that the Team Penske driver has scored a win each season, dating back to his first start in 2008.

Power led once for 31 laps to earn his 34th career win, his third win at Pocono.

There were four cautions for 23 laps, with 12 lead changes among four leaders.

In the penalty summary, Takuma Sato was awarded a post-race penalty for avoidable contact. James Hinchcliffe, Alexander Rossi and Ryan Hunter-Reay received a 10-lap penalty for working on their cars during the red flag and Colton Herta also received a post-race fine for a pit safety infraction.

Josef Newgarden continues to lead the points standings over Alexander Rossi by 35 points with three races remaining.

Official Results

  1. Will Power, led 31 laps
  2. Scott Dixon, led 32 laps
  3. Simon Pagenaud, led 64 laps
  4. Santino Ferrucci
  5. Josef Newgarden, led one lap
  6. Ed Carpenter
  7. Sebastien Bourdais
  8. Tony Kanaan
  9. Graham Rahal
  10. Charlie Kimball
  11. Conor Daly
  12. Marcus Ericsson
  13. Zach Veach, One lap down
  14. Matheus Leist, One lap down
  15. Marco Andretti, Two laps down
  16. Colton Herta, OUT, Crash
  17. Spencer Pigot, OUT, Crash
  18. Alexander Rossi, 89 laps down
  19. Ryan Hunter-Reay, OUT
  20. James Hinchclifee, OUT
  21. Takuma Sato, OUT
  22. Felix Rosenqvist, OUT

Up Next: The NTT IndyCar Series heads back to the Midwest on Saturday night August 24 at World Wide Technology Raceway.

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of SpeedwayMedia.com


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