IndyCar - RHR Wins At Iowa
NEWTON, Jun. 24, 2012: Ryan Hunter-Reay's second consecutive short track victory was reason enough to celebrate. Closing to three points of IZOD IndyCar Series championship front-runner Will Power was a bonus.
Hunter-Reay, who prevailed at the Milwaukee Mile a week earlier following a 90-minute rain delay, won the Iowa Corn Indy 250 at Iowa Speedway under caution. The start was delayed 40 minutes because of a thunderstorm.
Hunter-Reay, driving the No. 28 Team DHL/Sun Drop Citrus Soda car, led Andretti Autosport teammate Marco Andretti by 1.2223 seconds on Lap 247 of 250 when the yellow flag flew the next lap for the No. 6 car driven by Katherine Legge making contact with the SAFER Barrier exiting Turn 2.Andretti, the 2011 race winner, earned his first podium finish of the season. Tony Kanaan followed his runner-up finish to Hunter-Reay at Milwaukee with a third place and Scott Dixon was fourth. Simon Pagenaud, who started last in the 25-car field, climbed to fifth in his fourth oval race.
Day 2 NOTEBOOK:
Bobby Santos III won the USAC National Midget Friday night at Iowa Speedway. Bryan Clauson, who will compete in the Firestone Indy Lights Sukup 100 today finished 9th in the midget race. Bobby East won the USAC Silver Crown race.
Sage Karam of Andretti Autosport won the Iowa Speedway Foundation 100 from the pole position, Star Mazda Championship race. Karam also won the 2011 Star Mazda race at Iowa Speedway and the USF2000 race here in 2010.
Connor De Phillippi took the season point lead with a third-place finish. De Phillippi leads Jack Hawksworth139-135 as the series heads to Toronto for its next event.
IOWA CORN INDY 250 RACE SPECIFICS
•The race is 250 laps, 187.5 miles on .875-mile oval.
•The pit road speed limit is 60 mph.
•The fuel allotment is 78.5 gallons of E85.
•The green flag to start the race will be shown the fourth time by the start-finish line.
•Three-time Indianapolis 500 winner Johnny Rutherford, a resident of Fort Worth, Texas, will drive the pace car.
•There will be no tow-ins or returns from the garage within the final 20 laps of the race.
•The following cars were given 10 grid spot penalties for unapproved engine changes: #5 Viso, #11 Kanaan, #38 Rahal and #77 Pagenaud.
IOWA CORN INDY 250 RACE RUNNING:
At 9:15 p.m., the ambient temperature was 70 degrees with a relative humidity of 88 percent. Skies were cloudy. The track temperature was 74 degrees, according to Firestone engineers.
9:38 p.m. - Kevin Ross, President, Iowa Corn Growers Association, and guests gave the command, "Drivers, start your engines." All cars have started and are rolling on the grid.
On the third pace lap, #98 Tagliani stops on track in Turn 3. The initial start is waved off, but the race has begun. In Turn 2, there is heavy smoke trailing from #10 Franchitti, who pulls off in Turn 3. New leader is #3 Castroneves.
Lap 3: #98 Tagliani has rejoined the race, two laps down. He will have to start at the back.
Lap 6: #77 Pagenaud pits for fuel only.
Lap 10: GREEN. #3 Castroneves leads the field into Turn 1.
Lap 15: #3 Castroneves leads #2 Briscoe by .3275 of a second.
Lap 20: #3 Castroneves leads #2 Briscoe by .7843 of a second.
Lap 25: #3 Castroneves leads #2 Briscoe by 1.0814 seconds.
Lap 30: #4 Hildebrand on pit lane with broken front wing after contact on track with #28 Hunter-Reay. Crew replaces front wing. #3 Castroneves leads #2 Briscoe by 2.1202 seconds.
Lap 35: #3 Castroneves leads #27 Hinchcliffe by 2.1774 seconds.
Lap 40: #3 Castroneves leads #27 Hinchcliffe by .8929 of a second.
DARIO FRANCHITTI (No. 10 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Honda): "Yeah, it was making a very strange noise. I'd actually just come on the radio to say "Is this thing making an odd noise?" And then it let go. Really disappointed. I believe this was our Indy winner engine. A real shame that it let go. One of those things. We'll move on, but I'll tell you I think it's going to be a hell of a race. We're going to see the track changing a lot, and I'll be watching with you guys on TV."
Lap 45: #3 Castroneves leads #27 Hinchcliffe by 1.2328 seconds.
Lap 50: Working lap traffic#3 Castroneves leads #27 Hinchcliffe by .4198 of a second
Lap 52: #27 Hinchcliffe passes #3 Castroneves for the lead in Turn 2.
Lap 55: #27 Hinchcliffe leads #3 Castroneves by 1.2608 seconds.
Lap 60: #27 Hinchcliffe leads #3 Castroneves by 2.5526 seconds.
Lap 65: #27 Hinchcliffe leads #3 Castroneves by 1.4582 seconds.
James Hinchcliffe is leading his sixth race of 2012. He's led more laps tonight than he had all season (16).
DAY 2 - SATURDAY, JUNE 23, 2012
Lap 68: YELLOW. #5 Viso and #12 Power make contact in Turn 2. #5 Viso makes contact with the SAFER Barrier #12 Power spins and hits #5 Viso. Leaders under yellow are: #27 Hinchcliffe, #3 Castroneves, #28 Hunter-Reay, #18 Wilson and #11 Kanaan.
Lap 70: Leaders on pit road. #19 Jakes does not pit and assumes the lead of the race. #3 Castroneves wins race off of pit road followed by #27 Hinchcliffe.
IZOD IndyCar Series officials have penalized #14 Conway for being too fast entering pit road.
Lap 81: Restart waved off due to reports of rain over circuit,
Lap 85: GREEN. #3 Castroneves leads the field into Turn 1.
IZOD IndyCar Series officials have penalized #19 for passing the pace car. He will have to do a 40-second stop and hold penalty.
Lap 90: #3 Castroneves leads #27 Hinchcliffe by .3332 of a second.
Lap 91: #22 Servia on pit road for fuel only.
Lap 95: #3 Castroneves leads #27 Hinchcliffe by .3886 of a second.
Medical update from Dr. Michael Olinger, INDYCAR Medical Director: Will Power and E.J. Viso have been checked and released from the infield care center. Both are cleared to drive.
WILL POWER (No. 12 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet): "I just lost it. I feel bad for E.J. because I took him with me, he said to me in the car that I was down low on him or something and I didn't understand, but oh yeah, now I see. I didn't get the call that he was underneath me, so I feel, man I didn't even know he was there, I feel bad for him."
E.J. VISO (No. 5 CITGO|PDVSA KV Racing Technology Chevrolet): "Will was definitely on the pace, he just doesn't use his mirror. I had a run at him, I was into corner one and he just blocked me, blocked me, and I couldn't get lower, I already had my front left tire inside the apron and the yellow line. He just kept going lower and I had nowhere to go. This is not the usual Will that we used to know by being clean, this is the second race that he affects somebody on my team and it's very disappointing. We had a great car and I think that we could have won this race. It's just a shame. The car was a rocket, I'm very thankful for the team. We've had some very strong performances, the results are very close, but things like this are stopping us from getting them.
Lap 99: YELLOW. #4 Hildebrand makes contact with the SAFER Barrier in Turn 4 and comes to rest on the frontstretch. Leaders under caution are: #3 Castroneves, #27 Hinchcliffe, #28 Hunter-Reay, #26 Andretti and #11 Kanaan.
Lap 100: #9 Dixon and #2 Briscoe on pit lane for four tires and fuel.
Medical update from Dr. Michael Olinger, INDYCAR Medical Director: JR Hildebrand has been checked and released from the infield care center. He is cleared to drive.
Lap 110: #2 Briscoe on pit road for fuel only.
Lap 111: GREEN. #3 Castroneves leads the field into Turn 1.
Lap 115: #3 Castroneves leads #27 Hinchcliffe by .3924 of a second.
Lap 120: #3 Castroneves leads #27 Hinchcliffe by .4107 of a second.
JR HILDEBRAND (No. 4 National Guard Panther Racing Chevrolet): "We kind of washed up into his wake and when you're that close the car doesn't really turn as much as you think it is, so I missed that by probably a matter of inches, but that obviously put us a few laps down. But man after that we were just hauling the mail, the car was super super good, I feel terrible for the Panther Racing and the whole National Guard Hiring our Heroes team. We had such a good race. I had every bit of faith that with a couple of yellows we were going to get back on the lead lap and motor up the field, the car was really that good. So it's just, man I'm pissed. That was just a mistake on my part."
Lap 125: #3 Castroneves leads #27 Hinchcliffe by .5404 of a second.
Lap 130: #3 Castroneves leads #27 Hinchcliffe by .8725 of a second.
Lap 135: #3 Castroneves leads #27 Hinchcliffe by .3340 of a second.
Lap 140: #3 Castroneves leads #27 Hinchcliffe by .6091 of a second.
Lap 145: #3 Castroneves leads #28 Hunter-Reay by .9211 of a second.
Lap 150: #3 Castroneves leads #28 Hunter-Reay by .0926 of a second.
Lap 153: #26 Andretti on pit road for four tires and fuel.
Lap 155: Leader #3 Castroneves and #11 Kanaan on pit road for four tires and fuel. New leader is #28 Hunter-Reay.
Lap 156: #27 Hinchcliffe on pit road for four tires and fuel.
Lap 157: Leader #28 Hunter-Reay and #77 Pagenaud on pit road for four tires and fuel. New leader is #9 Dixon.
Lap 160: #9 Dixon leads #2 Briscoe by 5.2537 seconds. They are the only cars on the lead lap after the green flag stops.
Lap 166: #9 Dixon leads #2 Briscoe by 6.8259 seconds.
Lap 176: #9 Dixon on pit road for four tires and fuel. The new leader is #2 Briscoe.
Lap 178: YELLOW. #67 Newgarden makes contact with leader #2 Briscoe in Turn 2. #2 Briscoe make contact with the SAFER Barrier. Leader under caution is #26 Andretti, #28 Hunter-Reay and #9 Dixon.
Lap 182: Leaders on pit road for four tires and fuel. #9 Dixon does not stop and assumes lead of the race. #26 Andretti wins the race on pit road followed by #3 Castroneves and #28 Hunter-Reay.
Medical update from Dr. Michael Olinger, INDYCAR Medical Director: Ryan Hunter-Reay has been checked and released from the infield care center. He is cleared to drive.
RYAN BRISCOE (No. 2 PPG Automotive Refinishes Team Penske Chevrolet): "He was coming out on tires with stickers about two seconds a lap quicker, and we were going down the straight—I went low early in the straight to show him that I was giving him the high line and when we got there he just never lifted and just came barreling in. It's disappointing, my spotter didn't have time to tell me that that's where he was going, I don't think anyone saw that coming. It's tough, then he tried going low, and he's coming from way too far back there, it's too late to make a pass like that. So, it's disappointing, but he's a rookie and he'll learn from it, and it's a shame because I think on fuel we were in position to when the thing. We had made the car a lot better from the start and I was looking forward to the finish.
JOSEF NEWGARDEN (No. 67 Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing Honda): "It's pretty tough from that point because even coming up to it I was looking at what they were doing and Briscoe was working that top lane like he wanted to be up in the middle of the top, and that was fine. I decided that we were going to low and he had such a difference in speed really, you know I went low on the entry and then he kinda slowed down and started coming low as well. I actually tried to get out of it because he started coming low and I mean I couldn't even get out of it in time. I tried to go below the yellow to avoid it and even brake, there was just not enough there really. Really caught me off guard too, I was not trying to do anything silly or rushed, I think the race was really coming to us and was trying to be real methodical about what we were doing. I think it's a shame for it to end that way, I think we had a really strong car coming to us during the race for SFHR and for it to end like that, I know everyone is pretty disappointed, including me.
#3 Castroneves has clinched the two bonus points for leading the most laps in tonight's race.
Lap 195: GREEN. #3 Castroneves leads the field into Turn 1.
Lap 196: YELLOW. #27 Hinchcliffe spins and makes contact in Turn 4. Leaders under caution are: #9 Dixon, #26 Andretti, #3 Castroneves, #11 Kanaan and #28 Hunter-Reay.
Lap 204: GREEN. #9 Dixon leads the field into Turn 4.
Lap 210: #9 Dixon leads #26 Andretti by 1.9263 seconds.
Lap 216: #9 Dixon leads #26 Andretti by 2.1812 seconds
Lap 220: #9 Dixon leads #26 Andretti by .8930 of a second.
Lap 225: #9 Dixon leads #26 Andretti by .3274 of a second.
Lap 230: #9 Dixon leads #26 Andretti by .4892 of a second.
Lap 233: #28 Hunter-Reay passes #26 Andretti for second place.
Lap 236: #9 Dixon leads #28 Hunter-Reay by .2275 of a second.
Lap 238: #28 Hunter-Reay passes #9 Dixon for the lead in Turn 2.
Lap 240: #28 Hunter-Reay leads #26 Andretti by 1.2807 seconds.
Lap 245: #28 Hunter-Reay leads #26 Andretti by 1.1223 seconds.
Lap 248: YELLOW: #6 Legge spins in Turn 2 and makes contact.
Lap 250: CHECKERED: Ryan Hunter-Reay wins the Iowa Corn Indy 250.
IOWA CORN INDY 250 POST-RACE NOTES:
• This is Ryan Hunter-Reay's second straight win and his seventh career Indy car win. It is his first win at Iowa Speedway.
• This is Andretti Autosport's fourth win at Iowa Speedway (Franchitti in 2007, Tony Kanaan 2010 and Marco Andretti 2011).
• Marco Andretti finished second, his best finish of the 2012 season. It is Andretti's fourth podium finish in six starts at Iows
• Tony Kanaan finished third. It is Kanaan's third consecutive podium finish in Iowa.
• Scott Dixon finished fourth, his fifth top-five finish of the season.
• Simon Pagenaud finished fifth, his sixth top-five finish of 2012.
RYAN HUNTER-REAY (No. 28 Team DHL/Sun Drop Citrus Soda Chevrolet, winner Iowa Corn Indy 250): "That was very challenging. We were sliding around a little bit more today. I have to thank Marco (Andretti). They came here and tested. Marco put the set up on the car. When we came here, we tweaked it just a little. From there, we basically raced with what he tested with. We got another win for Chevy, DHL and Sun Drop. Marco and I raced really hard out there, really clean. It's great to have a teammate like that and we're just so happy to be in Victory Lane twice in a row."
MARCO ANDRETTI (No. 26 Team RC Cola Chevrolet): "It was a lot of fun, the car came alive in the second stint. I think we in hindsight could have taken another turn of the front wing and been really hard to beat at the end, but we kept the car how it is and I kind of ran out of tools at the end and had a lot of understeer. Great team effort, definitely a statement from Andretti Autosport and congrats to Ryan."
SCOTT DIXON (No. 9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Honda):"The car was decent and we struggled early on with under steer and I don't think I did a good job of asking to get it dialed out. Toward the end I could only go to the bottom and when I got high it just had too much under steer. We gave it the best we could and got stuck behind two slower Honda cars at the end who we had trouble getting around. I was a bit confused over that but I'm not sure we were going to hang on and win either. Tough night for the Target team."
SIMON PAGENAUD (No. 77 Schmidt Hamilton HP Motorsports Honda): "I've never started last before! When I saw everyone in front of me at the start, I couldn't believe I was back there. I was sitting in the car before the race and thinking about my girlfriend's father who passed away this week. We were very close. He watched every race of mine, and I felt like he was watching me still tonight. My thought process starting the race was 'just to move forward.' It was really difficult at the beginning. We were already a lap down before I got confident with the car. Something just clicked, and everything unlocked and we started moving forward. I'm really starting to enjoy the ovals. It's close racing and it's fun."
HELIO CASTRONEVES (No. 3 Penske Truck Rental Chevrolet): "The Penske Truck Rental car ran out front it seems like the entire night. The positive is that we are moving up in the championship points and getting closer to my teammate. The downside is losing a race that we could have won. A lot of credit goes to my guys, they did a phenomenal job on pit stops all night long. Now it is on to Toronto and hopefully we can keep moving to the top."
TAKUMA SATO (No. 15 Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing Honda): "It was a very hard race, we fought very hard. The boys did a great job to regroup after a difficult weekend. We didn't have the speed this weekend. We tried to find the speed and were improving but it was such a hard race. We were just hanging in there and it was as tough of a race as I have ever had. I am looking forward to getting back on road and street courses and also look forward to going to Canada."
SIMONA DE SILVESTRO (No. 78 Nuclear Clean Air Energy Lotus HVM Racing Lotus): "I'm pretty happy with 14th, that's our second best finish this year, and it was on an oval. I think there was a lot of survival going on out there, but I think we had a really strong race car. It was really comfortable out there so I could stay in the tow of other people. A big thanks to the team, they kept working really hard every time. Even when we know it's going to be a tough weekend we always hope for the best. I think today we had a pretty good result at the end. Hopefully we'll get some improvements for the road courses and start sneaking into the top 10."
GRAHAM RAHAL (No. 38 Service Central Honda): Graham: It was a long day. We were just really struggling to get any grip and were hanging on for 250 laps. I'm happy to come away with a top-10. We're going to keep working on it and that's what you have to do. Hopefully, we'll get a little better.
CHARLIE KIMBALL (No. 83 NovoLog FlexPen Honda): "It was a fun night overall. I learned more in the second-half of tonight's race than all of the short ovals we've done all year. I've got to give a lot of credit to the Novo Nordisk Chip Ganassi Racing guys. I was working my marks. They rocked it in pit lane. There was one stop where we went by four or five guys in pit lane. They kept making the car better and giving me more and more speed in pit lane. I was learning in traffic. In the end there, we just brought it home, knocking on the door of a top-10, which is good to build some momentum heading into this string of road courses.
TONY KANAAN (No. 11 GEICO /Mouser Electronics- KV Racing Technology Chevrolet): "It was a great day for us. I wished we had started further up the field, but the GEICO | MOUSER guys gave me a great car. We don't take the podium finish for granted, but I think we had a car that could have won the race. There were lots of dodgy moves out there. People were driving kind of crazy. I hope the fans liked the race. Now we have to capitalize on what we have done so far, the championship is getting tight. Hopefully we can get a win soon."
ED CARPENTER (No. 20 Fuzzy's Vodka/Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet): "Another top 10 and another race starting in the back and fighting our way forward. We lost a lap twice and got it back pretty late to make a charge. We made a bad call on the first wave around and I lost the lap again on a pit stop. We pitted too quickly before we packed up. But similar to Milwaukee (when he passed E.J. Viso on a restart), I was able to pass (Scott) Dixon on a restart and the yellow came out immediately. I was able to pack up and pick up a few more spots before the end. I think I've always gotten good restarts but never gotten praised for it like TK (Tony Kanaan) or (Tomas) Scheckter. I feels that is a strength of mine. When you get opportunities in a race you have to make the most of them. I thought I had better than Dixon and that was going to be my last chance to get a lap back. And we got a good break on the yellow. Happy to get another top-ten but I had to work much too hard for it. The Fuzzy's car could have been a top-five car today."
JAMES HINCHCLIFFE (No. 27 Team GoDaddy.com Chevrolet): "On the restart there, we've been understeering all night, which is sort of the weird thing about (the crash). We pulled in for the stop and I don't know man, it's just one of those things. The dirty air there behind Ryan making passes towards the front and the cars had been running better on the bottom all night so I was able to take that high line like a lot of guys were and tuck it down there and try to follow Katherine's groove. Snapped once, snapped twice almost got it and then it went around. I feel bad for the Go Daddy guys, obviously the cars are running really well and I thought we had a good shot at winning this thing, and I just feel bad for the guys on the team."
RUBENS BARRICHELLO (No. 8 BMC/Embrase - KV Racing Technology Chevrolet): "I must say I am happy with this 7th place finish. I started the race on a completely different set up and for two stints my car was pretty loose. We managed not to lose a lap and once the car got better after the changes we made in the first two pit stops then I was able to race. It's still such a different experience on this ovals but like I said I am pleased with the result."