2018 IndyCar champion will have to beat 'standout' Rossi - Power

IndyCar's 2018 champion will have to beat Andretti's Alexander Rossi to win the title because he is now the field's "standout" driver, says Will Power

2018 IndyCar champion will have to beat 'standout' Rossi - Power

Rossi took his first win of the 2018 season by dominating on the streets of Long Beach on Sunday after Power was unable to get close enough to challenge in a nine-lap dash to the flag following a late caution.

The former Marussia Formula 1 driver was also in contention for victories in the two previous races, colliding with Robert Wickens when fighting for the win at St Petersburg and then making a remarkable recovery drive to third at Phoenix.

Power said Rossi, who leads the standings by 22 points over 2017 champion Josef Newgarden, is the current driver to beat.

"When you look at what Rossi did this weekend, [he was] really, really, really strong," he said.

"I think he's going to be tough to beat in the championship. He's definitely what I'd call a standout of the field right now in every respect.

"Even when we saw him at Phoenix on the oval, as well. You'll have to beat him [to win the title], I think."

The Penske driver added Rossi was standing out in the strongest field of drivers to compete in IndyCar.

"I would say right now is the most competitive, talented group of drivers that the series has seen," he said.

"When you look at how Rossi has come on and the rookies that are here this year, guys like Wickens, it just gets harder.

"It gets harder and harder, and the common body kit I think was a really, really good idea.

"To win and be on pole these days, you've just got to get it so right."

When asked for his opinion on Power suggesting he was the driver to beat, Rossi said: "That's cool.

"But we'll see next weekend, right? You're only as good as your last time on track.

"Until we, hopefully, are in the fight for a championship at Sonoma and we can come away with that, then everyone else is the person to beat as well.

"We've had a good three races, and we've been able to get the car in the window pretty consistently. But that's not a guarantee for every weekend.

"There's a lot of very strong teams and drivers in this championship that have the capability to beat us, and I just think that the effort that's put in back in Indianapolis at the workshop and the continual desire to be better is something that makes a difference.

"We're a very motivated team right now.

"It hasn't been the easiest three, four years for Andretti Autosport, and there was a time when they were the champion [its latest crown was 2012 with Ryan Hunter-Reay].

"So definitely, as a group, we all want to get back to that point, and we're trying very hard to make that happen."

shares
comments
IndyCar Long Beach: Rossi dominates race, beats Power in late showdown

Previous article

IndyCar Long Beach: Rossi dominates race, beats Power in late showdown

Next article

IndyCar Long Beach: Officials forced Bourdais to race with 'idiots'

IndyCar Long Beach: Officials forced Bourdais to race with 'idiots'
Load comments

About this article

Series IndyCar
Drivers Alexander Rossi , Will Power
Author Tom Errington
The Indycar season that proves Michael Andretti is better than F1 showed Plus

The Indycar season that proves Michael Andretti is better than F1 showed

Often unfairly characterised as a car-breaker, judged for his lack of an Indianapolis 500 win and a disappointing part-season of Formula 1 in 1993, Michael Andretti was highly respected by his rivals and only thwarted greater success by ill-fortune. When it all came together in 1991, he was a truly formidable force

IndyCar
Mar 6, 2021
How McLaren is striving towards IndyCar's elite Plus

How McLaren is striving towards IndyCar's elite

The second year of McLaren's full-time IndyCar return is looming, with Patricio O'Ward and Felix Rosenqvist leading its line-up. Strong team personnel and work behind the scenes means that 2021 could be the year it joins the established elite

IndyCar
Feb 21, 2021
The enigmatic legacy of a misunderstood Indy stalwart Plus

The enigmatic legacy of a misunderstood Indy stalwart

Flashes of brilliance amid spells of obscurity have been too common for Marco Andretti. While the third-generation racer has opted to bring his full-time IndyCar career to a close, his peaks and troughs have never been for want of trying

IndyCar
Jan 20, 2021
Why American racing's top dog is without equal Plus

Why American racing's top dog is without equal

A byword for success in business and in motorsport for over 50 years, Roger Penske's importance to the US scene cannot be understated. In an exclusive interview, the custodian of the IndyCar Series and Indianapolis Motor Speedway reflects on his journey

IndyCar
Jan 11, 2021
The McLaren that rendered its Indy rivals obsolete Plus

The McLaren that rendered its Indy rivals obsolete

When founder Bruce McLaren died in June 1970, his team could have folded. Instead, his loyal band rallied to produce a string of winners - including an Indycar game-changer that won its third Indianapolis 500 five years after its debut

IndyCar
Dec 22, 2020
Why Newgarden's best IndyCar season yet wasn't enough Plus

Why Newgarden's best IndyCar season yet wasn't enough

Josef Newgarden feels he didn't put a foot wrong in 2020, yet his finest season-long run of performances failed to yield a third series championship. But in a warning shot to Scott Dixon, Team Penske's team leader has vowed to redouble his efforts in 2021

IndyCar
Dec 21, 2020
How Dixon held on in IndyCar's most unpredictable season Plus

How Dixon held on in IndyCar's most unpredictable season

Three wins on the trot gave the Chip Ganassi Racing superstar the cushion he needed to hang on for a sixth title in the face of Josef Newgarden's late challenge. Here's the rundown of a typically frantic IndyCar campaign in an extraordinary year

IndyCar
Nov 28, 2020
The balancing act required for improving racing at Indy Plus

The balancing act required for improving racing at Indy

Calls for an improvement in the racing spectacle at the Indianapolis 500 have been met with small aerodynamic tweaks from IndyCar on superspeedways. But where such high speeds are involved, even minor adjustments require significant planning

IndyCar
Oct 31, 2020