Compared with Simon Pagenaud, 2014 IndyCar champion Power made more errors, but he was also much more often in the reckoning for victory and his mistakes came when running at the limit and contending for the lead or pole. This is why he edges his team-mate in our rankings.
Penske’s tactical blunder at St Petersburg cost him a possible win and a rare mechanical failure and ill-timed yellow at Austin lost him a certain trip to Victory Lane. Being sent out of the pitlane at Detroit with only three wheels on his car in one race, and suffering an electrical gearbox management glitch in the following day’s race was painful too.
So when a team preparation issue cost him downforce at Texas the following week, Power really started feeling the pressure to nail his first win of the season. That resulted in his dreadful weekend in Toronto and a blunder at Iowa while entering the pitlane, which incurred a drivethrough penalty, same as his punishment for brushing against his refueller at Indy. Later, Power would throw away a possible podium at Gateway when he skated into the wall.
As usual, he was quite brilliant in qualifying, and his ability to live with a loose car at (very) high speed produced his third win in four years at Pocono. When Scott Dixon fell out of contention in Portland, Power was left with no opponent and he duly delivered another triumph.
Overall, however, it was a year of missed opportunities for Power – driver errors, team errors and things outside their control conspired to consign Power to fifth in the standings.