Graham Rahal completes dominant Detroit IndyCar double win

Graham Rahal continued his impressive form to dominate in Detroit, becoming the first man to win both races of IndyCar's Belle Isle double-header

Graham Rahal completes dominant Detroit IndyCar double win

Starting third, Rahal showed no signs of having lost any pace from Saturday and made short work of Ryan Hunter-Reay, passing him on lap nine of 70 with an audacious move around the outside of Turn 7 for second.

Making his first of two stops on lap 24, Rahal proceeded to jump polesitter Takuma Sato in the pits after running an extra lap longer than the Japanese driver, emerging behind only the three-stopping Josef Newgarden.

After Newgarden pitted again, Rahal claimed the lead and started to build a large gap over the rest of the field, holding a 16-second advantage at the end of the final pitstop phase.

Coming up to lap Hunter-Reay - who dropped through the field after contact with Helio Castroneves in the early stages - Rahal was unable to close up to the Andretti driver, allowing Newgarden to whittle away at his advantage.

Newgarden - who had made his three-stop strategy work with some blistering pace - closed the gap to just under six seconds, before Hunter-Reay eventually allowed Rahal past.

The first caution was then called on lap 66 after James Hinchcliffe's Honda cried enough on the run to Turn 3, before a red flag was subsequently waved after Spencer Pigot's turbo expired on the same stretch of track.

Hunter-Reay was given the wave-around to unlap himself after the red flag, setting up a final showdown between Rahal and Newgarden on the restart.

As the green flag dropped with two laps to go, Rahal was able to use his remaining push-to-pass time to streak clear of Newgarden and claim an impressive victory, becoming the first driver to win two IndyCar races in 2017.

Newgarden was under threat from Penske team-mate Will Power directly after the restart, but managed to hold onto second place across the line, over a second ahead of the Australian.

Sato was unable to convert his pole into anything greater than fourth place, narrowly beating Simon Pagenaud and Scott Dixon to the line.

Alexander Rossi made steady progress through the field to finish seventh as Charlie Kimball just managed to secure eighth, finishing only a tenth ahead of Castroneves.

Tony Kanaan rounded out the top 10, after AJ Foyt's Conor Daly dropped down the order following contact at the restart.

RESULTS - 70 LAPS:

Pos Driver Team Car Gap
1 Graham Rahal Rahal Letterman Lanigan Dallara/Honda 1h33m36.3769s
2 Josef Newgarden Team Penske Dallara/Chevrolet 1.1772s
3 Will Power Team Penske Dallara/Chevrolet 2.6228s
4 Takuma Sato Andretti Autosport Dallara/Honda 3.8535s
5 Simon Pagenaud Team Penske Dallara/Chevrolet 4.0810s
6 Scott Dixon Chip Ganassi Racing Dallara/Honda 4.6005s
7 Alexander Rossi Andretti Herta Dallara/Honda 6.1978s
8 Charlie Kimball Chip Ganassi Racing Dallara/Honda 6.6823s
9 Helio Castroneves Team Penske Dallara/Chevrolet 6.8439s
10 Tony Kanaan Chip Ganassi Racing Dallara/Honda 7.7201s
11 Carlos Munoz AJ Foyt Enterprises Dallara/Chevrolet 8.1160s
12 Conor Daly AJ Foyt Enterprises Dallara/Chevrolet 8.7847s
13 Marco Andretti Andretti Autosport Dallara/Honda 9.6103s
14 Esteban Gutierrez Dale Coyne Racing Dallara/Honda 13.1325s
15 Max Chilton Chip Ganassi Racing Dallara/Honda 1 Lap
16 Mikhail Aleshin Schmidt Peterson Motorsports Dallara/Honda 1 Lap
17 Ryan Hunter-Reay Andretti Autosport Dallara/Honda 1 Lap
18 J.R. Hildebrand Ed Carpenter Racing Dallara/Chevrolet 1 Lap
19 Oriol Servia Rahal Letterman Lanigan Dallara/Honda 1 Lap
20 James Hinchcliffe Schmidt Peterson Motorsports Dallara/Honda Mechanical
21 Spencer Pigot Ed Carpenter Racing Dallara/Chevrolet Mechanical
22 Ed Jones Dale Coyne Racing Dallara/Honda Mechanical

CHAMPIONSHIP STANDINGS:

Pos Driver Points
1 Scott Dixon 303
2 Helio Castroneves 295
3 Takuma Sato 292
4 Simon Pagenaud 278
5 Josef Newgarden 259
6 Graham Rahal 251
7 Alexander Rossi 246
8 Will Power 233
9 Tony Kanaan 223
10 James Hinchcliffe 216
11 Ed Jones 215
12 Max Chilton 204
13 Ryan Hunter-Reay 183
14 Marco Andretti 182
15 Mikhail Aleshin 177
16 J.R. Hildebrand 173
17 Carlos Munoz 168
18 Sebastien Bourdais 136
19 Charlie Kimball 132
20 Spencer Pigot 124
21 Conor Daly 114
22 Ed Carpenter 105
23 Juan Pablo Montoya 93
24 Oriol Servia 61
25 Gabby Chaves 53
26 Fernando Alonso 47
27 Sebastian Saavedra 33
28 Pippa Mann 32
29 Esteban Gutierrez 27
30 Jay Howard 24
31 Zach Veach 23
32 Sage Karam 23
33 James Davison 21
34 Jack Harvey 17
35 Buddy Lazier 14

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