Round and round - theIowa Corn field

Round and round - theIowa Corn field

Postby meteorite » Sun Aug 02, 2015 5:00 pm

All-American Podium Sweep at Iowa Speedway, Hunter-Reay Claims Win

NEWTON, Iowa (July 18, 2015) - American drivers swept the top four positions - and six of the top seven - as Andretti Autosport driver Ryan Hunter-Reay captured his first victory of the Verizon IndyCar Series season Saturday night in the Iowa Corn 300. Hunter-Reay prevailed by .5046 of a second over Josef Newgarden to become the ninth different winner in 13 Verizon IndyCar Series races this season.

Sunoco Rookie of the Year candidate Sage Karam finished a career-high third. Graham Rahal placed fourth for his third consecutive top-five finish, and Carlos Munoz, who won at Detroit in May, was fifth.

The last time Americans swept the podium in a Verizon IndyCar Series event was the 2006 Indianapolis 500 Mile Race, when Michael Andretti followed winner Sam Hornish Jr. and Marco Andretti across the finish line in one of the most historic finishes at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

It was the sixth consecutive victory for Andretti Autosport at Iowa Speedway and the third victory at the track for Hunter-Reay, who was also battling Newgarden for the win one year ago, when he beat the CFH Racing driver to the finish line by .5814 of a second.

"The No. 28 DHL Honda was on rails at the end," said Hunter-Reay, who had only one top-five finish this season entering the race. "This one we really had to work for. After a tough season, this one is really nice."

Following a Lap 278 restart, Hunter-Reay held off multiple challenges by Newgarden in the No. 67 Wichita State University/CFH Racing Chevrolet.

"To finish second was bittersweet," said Newgarden, who qualified seventh. "We had a winning car, but it's a credit to the team to finish second."

Juan Pablo Montoya's championship points lead appeared to take a hit when the No. 2 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet made right-side contact with the Turn 2 SAFER Barrier on Lap 10 of the 300-lap race. It was his first DNF of the season and the first in 18 races since the 2014 race at Iowa Speedway.

"We had a good car. It was a little loose the first couple of laps, so I was just really taking it easy, biding my time," said Montoya, who qualified third. "Something broke."

A mechanical issue in the final third of the race plagued the No. 9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet of Scott Dixon, who entered the race 54 points behind, and an 11th-place finish by pole sitter Helio Castroneves, allowed Montoya to enter the Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio on Aug. 2 relatively unscathed.

Rahal moved to second in the standings -- 42 points behind -- while Dixon, who finished 18th, is 48 points back and Castroneves is 54 points out of the lead.

Iowa Corn 300 Race Results

NEWTON, Iowa - Results Saturday of the Iowa Corn 300 Verizon IndyCar Series event on the 0.894 mile Iowa Speedway, with order of finish, starting position in parentheses, driver, aero kit-engine, laps completed and reason out (if any):
1. (9) Ryan Hunter-Reay, Honda, 300, Running
2. (7) Josef Newgarden, Chevrolet, 300, Running
3. (10) Sage Karam, Chevrolet, 300, Running
4. (17) Graham Rahal, Honda, 300, Running
5. (12) Carlos Munoz, Honda, 300, Running
6. (11) Ed Carpenter, Chevrolet, 300, Running
7. (8) Marco Andretti, Honda, 300, Running
8. (19) Ryan Briscoe, Honda, 300, Running
9. (24) Sebastien Bourdais, Chevrolet, 300, Running
10. (6) Will Power, Chevrolet, 300, Running
11. (1) Helio Castroneves, Chevrolet, 300, Running
12. (20) Tristan Vautier, Honda, 299, Running
13. (21) Jack Hawksworth, Honda, 299, Running
14. (5) Simon Pagenaud, Chevrolet, 299, Running
15. (14) James Jakes, Honda, 299, Running
16. (23) Gabby Chaves, Honda, 299, Running
17. (18) Justin Wilson, Honda, 297, Running
18. (4) Scott Dixon, Chevrolet, 263, Running
19. (15) Takuma Sato, Honda, 260, Contact
20. (13) Stefano Coletti, Chevrolet, 191, Contact
21. (2) Tony Kanaan, Chevrolet, 189, Mechanical
22. (16) Charlie Kimball, Chevrolet, 170, Contact
23. (22) Pippa Mann, Honda, 136, Handling
24. (3) Juan Pablo Montoya, Chevrolet, 9, Contact

Race Statistics
Winners average speed: 129.943
Time of Race: 02:03:50.3315
Margin of victory: 0.5046 of a second
Cautions: 6 for 73 laps
Lead changes: 14 among 10 drivers

Lap Leaders:
Castroneves 1
Kanaan 2 - 68
Castroneves 69 - 77
Kanaan 78 - 80
Power 81 - 82
Jakes 83 - 85
Bourdais 86 -91
Kimball 92 - 98
Castroneves 99 - 105
Newgarden 106 - 125
Castroneves 126 - 158
Newgarden 159 - 249
Hawksworth 250 - 256
Rahal 257 - 263
Hunter-Reay 264 - 300

Verizon IndyCar Series Point Standings: Montoya 445, Rahal 403, Dixon 397, Castroneves 391, Power 390, Bourdais 366, Andretti 358, Newgarden 352, Kanaan 324, Pagenaud 294.
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