Simon Pagenaud claims third straight IndyCar win at Indianapolis

Simon Pagenaud extended his IndyCar championship lead with his third consecutive win for Team Penske in the Grand Prix of Indianapolis

Simon Pagenaud claims third straight IndyCar win at Indianapolis

The Long Beach and Barber Motorsports Park winner held a comfortable lead during the first half of the Indy road course race over fellow Dallara-Chevrolet driver Charlie Kimball and the Honda-powered James Hinchcliffe.

Pagenaud looked able to manage his advantage until a slow moving Sebastien Bourdais ­- who had already been in the wars when squeezed into the wall at the race start in Turn 1 by Tony Kanaan and Scott Dixon - brought the yellow flags out just before half-distance.

Helio Castroneves, who had pitted under green flag conditions two laps previously, and Dale Coyne Racing's Conor Daly then found themselves at the front after the rest of the field cycled into the pits under the caution.

On the restart Daly stormed past Castroneves into Turn 1 and threatened to claim a first IndyCar win when he created a 2.8s gap on the Penske man.

But it wasn't to be for the Indianapolis home-hero, who was forced to take his final stop on lap 60 of 82, and found himself back into fourth after the rest of the field had pitted.

Pagenaud stayed out an extra lap over team-mate Castroneves, which was enough for the championship leader to reclaim the lead by more than 3s leaving the pits.

From there Pagenaud eased to the chequered flag with Castroneves and Schmidt Peterson's Hinchcliffe rounding out the podium.

Fourth went to Graham Rahal, who managed to steal a strong points finish despite starting from the back after his car was deemed underweight in post-qualifying scrutineering, while Kimball came home fifth.

Daly held on to finish sixth to take his best finish of the season, ahead of Dixon and Juan Pablo Montoya.

Montoya had struggled in qualifying and a pit exit infringement early on in the race left him in damage-limitation mode.

Ryan Hunter-Reay, whose off-strategy decision paid off when he vaulted eight positions at the start and remained in the top 10 mix despite a poor qualifying, took ninth.

Will Power was unable to fulfil his Friday practice speed when he spun under pressure from Alexander Rossi into the Turn 7 left-hander at the end of the infield straight early on. The Penske driver was left disappointed with 19th.

RESULTS - 82 LAPS:

Pos Driver Team Car Gap
1 Simon Pagenaud Team Penske Dallara/Chevrolet 1h50m18.5823s
2 Helio Castroneves Team Penske Dallara/Chevrolet 4.4748s
3 James Hinchcliffe Schmidt Peterson Motorsports Dallara/Honda 5.0807s
4 Graham Rahal Rahal Letterman Lanigan Dallara/Honda 7.0715s
5 Charlie Kimball Chip Ganassi Racing Dallara/Chevrolet 7.4234s
6 Conor Daly Dale Coyne Racing Dallara/Honda 12.1838s
7 Scott Dixon Chip Ganassi Racing Dallara/Chevrolet 12.9226s
8 Juan Pablo Montoya Team Penske Dallara/Chevrolet 13.6912s
9 Ryan Hunter-Reay Andretti Autosport Dallara/Honda 15.1933s
10 Alexander Rossi Andretti Herta Dallara/Honda 16.3134s
11 Spencer Pigot Rahal Letterman Lanigan Dallara/Honda 20.5172s
12 Carlos Munoz Andretti Autosport Dallara/Honda 29.6369s
13 Mikhail Aleshin Schmidt Peterson Motorsports Dallara/Honda 43.3094s
14 Max Chilton Chip Ganassi Racing Dallara/Chevrolet 43.3785s
15 Marco Andretti Andretti Autosport Dallara/Honda 44.6339s
16 Matthew Brabham Team Murray Dallara/Chevrolet 45.5107s
17 Gabby Chaves Dale Coyne Racing Dallara/Honda 47.0326s
18 Takuma Sato AJ Foyt Enterprises Dallara/Honda 56.3389s
19 Will Power Team Penske Dallara/Chevrolet 57.4410s
20 Jack Hawksworth AJ Foyt Enterprises Dallara/Honda 1m03.7229s
21 Josef Newgarden Ed Carpenter Racing Dallara/Chevrolet 1m08.6234s
22 J.R. Hildebrand Ed Carpenter Racing Dallara/Chevrolet 1 Lap
23 Alex Tagliani AJ Foyt Enterprises Dallara/Honda 1 Lap
24 Sebastien Bourdais KVSH Racing Dallara/Chevrolet Mechanical
25 Tony Kanaan Chip Ganassi Racing Dallara/Chevrolet Contact

CHAMPIONSHIP STANDINGS

Pos Driver Points
1 Simon Pagenaud 242
2 Scott Dixon 166
3 Juan Pablo Montoya 160
4 Helio Castroneves 159
5 Graham Rahal 133
6 Tony Kanaan 111
7 Charlie Kimball 111
8 James Hinchcliffe 110
9 Ryan Hunter-Reay 109
10 Will Power 105
11 Takuma Sato 102
12 Josef Newgarden 100
13 Conor Daly 88
14 Mikhail Aleshin 87
15 Carlos Munoz 84
16 Max Chilton 80
17 Alexander Rossi 79
18 Marco Andretti 76
19 Sebastien Bourdais 75
20 Jack Hawksworth 60
21 Luca Filippi 45
22 Spencer Pigot 35
23 Matthew Brabham 14
24 Gabby Chaves 13
25 Oriol Servia 12
26 Ed Carpenter 9
27 J.R. Hildebrand 8
28 Alex Tagliani 7


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