IndyCar Series 2017
•Tony Kanaan recovers from contact, penalty to finish second
•Graham Rahal follows double wins in Detroit with fourth place in Texas
•Despite crash, Scott Dixon continues to lead drivers’ championship
FORT WORTH, Texas (June 10, 2017) – Tony Kanaan and Graham Rahal persevered through a crash-strewn Verizon IndyCar Series race Saturday night at Texas Motor Speedway, with Kanaan finishing second and Rahal fourth for Honda in the Rainguard Water Sealers 600.
Honda drivers and teams dominated qualifying Friday night at the 1.5-mile Texas Motor Speedway oval, sweeping the top eight starting positions. But crashes in tonight’s 248-lap contest eliminated eight of 13 Honda entries – and damaged a ninth. Fortunately, all drivers escaped injury in the multiple collisions.
Alexander Rossi was the first Honda front-runner to drop out, crashing into the Turn 3 wall, on Lap 37, after making light contact with the Chip Ganassi Racing entries of Scott Dixon and Tony Kanaan while all three jockeyed for third place.
The major crash of the night took place on Lap 152, eliminating six cars, including five Honda drivers. Kanaan, on the inside of three cars heading up the backstretch, made contact with the middle-running James Hinchcliffe, who then collected Mikhail Aleshin to set off a chain-reaction through the field. Hinchcliffe, Aleshin, Tristan Vautier – who earlier had led for 15 laps – Ed Jones, and Ryan Hunter-Reay were all eliminated from the race, which resulted in a 20-second “stop and hold” penalty for Kanaan in pit lane once racing resumed.
As the race entered its final 20 laps, both Scott Dixon and Takuma Sato appeared poised to contest the win with the Team Penske entries of Simon Pagenaud and Will Power. However, Sato dropped his left side tires into the grass at the start of Lap 244 and lost control, spinning into first the car of Dixon and then the wall. The Honda of Max Chilton also was damaged in the crash, falling from sixth place to finish the race in pit lane, classified eighth.
Power then took the checkers behind the safety car as the race ended under caution. Kanaan recovered from his penalty and fought his way back onto the lead lap to finish second, while Graham Rahal successfully avoided the multitude of crashes to work his way into the lead pack for the final laps, finishing fourth.
Dixon, credited with a ninth-place finish, continues to lead the drivers’ championship after nine of 17 races with 326 points, with Pagenaud second with 313 points, followed by Indy 500 champion Sato, third with 312 points.
Video recaps from this weekend’s Honda IndyCar Series racing activities in Texas, as well as Honda Formula 4 and Formula F1600 action from the famed Indianapolis Motor Speedway, are available on the "Honda Racing/HPD" YouTube channel. Produced by the Carolinas Production Group, the video packages can be found at: https://www.youtube.com/HondaRacingHPDTV.
After a run of five consecutive May-June event weekends, the Verizon IndyCar Series now takes a week off, then resumes June 25 at the scenic Road America circuit in Wisconsin for the Kohler Grand Prix.
|1||Will Power (Team Penske)|
|2||Tony Kanaan (Chip Ganassi Racing)|
|3||Simon Pagenaud (Team Penske)|
|4||Graham Rahal (Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing)|
|5||Gabby Chaves (Harding Racing)|
|6||Marco Andretti (Andretti Autosport)|
|7||Conor Daly (A.J. Foyt Racing)|
|8||Max Chilton (Chip Ganassi Racing)|
|9||Scott Dixon (Chip Ganassi Racing)|
|10||Takuma Sato (Andretti Autosport)|
|14||James Hinchcliffe (Schmidt Peterson Motorsports)|
|15||Mikhail Aleshin (Schmidt Peterson Motorsports)|
|16||Tristan Vautier (Dale Coyne Racing)|
|17||Ed Jones (Dale Coyne Racing)|
|19||Ryan Hunter-Reay (Andretti Autosport)|
|21||Charlie Kimball (Chip Ganassi Racing)|
|22||Alexander Rossi (Andretti Herta Autosport with Curb-Agajanian)|