Texas IndyCar: Helio Castroneves takes commanding win

Helio Castroneves moved to the outright IndyCar championship lead following a commanding victory in Saturday night's Texas race

Texas IndyCar: Helio Castroneves takes commanding win

Castroneves, who came into the weekend sitting equal in points with Marco Andretti, dominated most of the evening to eventually cross the line 5.2 seconds ahead of Ryan Hunter-Reay. Indianapolis 500 winner Tony Kanaan completed the podium.

The race was all about tyre management. Most drivers experienced extreme performance drop-off over the course of a 50-60 lap stint, but Penske driver Castroneves was almost alone in the field in being able to keep his tyres' performance reasonably consistent.

"At the start of the race the car was already awesome, and we didn't do a change in the first stop," he said.

"But most of the time it was managing the tyres. We were running like a Swiss watch, and everything was great."

The early stages were controlled by Andretti, who passed polesitter Will Power on the first lap, but a slower pitstop, different pit strategy and higher tyre wear gradually dropped him back through the field.

Unusually, the race was interrupted by just three caution periods, two of which were brought about by mechanical problems.

Pippa Mann's outing in the second Dale Coyne Racing car ended after a handful of laps when she suffered an apparent engine failure, while Scott Dixon triggered the yellows when he slowed with what would eventually become a terminal gearbox problem.

The only incident-induced interruption came when Oriol Servia spun and stopped at Turn 2, although he was able to get going again and finished the race.

Results - 228 laps: Pos Driver Team/Engine Time/Gap 1. Helio Castroneves Penske/Chevy 1h52m17.4594s 2. Ryan Hunter-Reay Andretti/Chevy + 4.6919s 3. Tony Kanaan KV/Chevy + 11.6088s 4. Ed Carpenter Carpenter/Chevy + 17.6930s 5. Marco Andretti Andretti/Chevy + 19.5078s 6. Dario Franchitti Ganassi/Honda + 1 lap 7. Will Power Penske/Chevy + 1 lap 8. Josef Newgarden Fisher/Honda + 1 lap 9. James Hinchcliffe Andretti/Chevy + 1 lap 10. EJ Viso Andretti/Chevy + 1 lap 11. Takuma Sato Foyt/Honda + 1 lap 12. James Jakes Rahal/Honda + 1 lap 13. Simon Pagenaud Schmidt/Honda + 2 laps 14. Sebastian Saavedras Dragon/Chevy + 2 laps 15. Justin Wilson Coyne/Honda + 2 laps 16. Simona de Silvestro KV/Chevy + 2 laps 17. Charlie Kimball Ganassi/Honda + 2 laps 18. Tristan Vautier Schmidt/Honda + 3 laps 19. Oriol Servia Panther/Chevy + 3 laps 20. Sebastien Bourdais Dragon/Chevy + 4 laps 21. Graham Rahal Rahal/Honda + 5 laps 22. Alex Tagliani Herta/Honda + 5 laps Retirements: Scott Dixon Ganassi/Honda 61 laps Pippa Mann Coyne/Honda 2 laps All drivers use Dallara DW12 chassis 
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