Power reigns at Indy GP for Penske's 200th Indy vehicle win

Power reigns at Indy GP for Penske's 200th Indy vehicle win

Power reigns at Indy GP for Penske's 200th Indy vehicle win

The Indy 500 may be a couple weeks away, but Indianapolis Motor Speedway was abuzz Saturday for the IndyCar Grand Prix road-course race.

It's the fourth straight year the pole victor has won, but it sure wasn't as easy as the other three. It was the 200th win in Indy auto history for Team Penske, which made its debut in the sport 50 years ago.

It might be just what Power needed. The only other top-10 he had this season was in the season opener at St. Petersburg.

Wickens, in the No. 6 Lucas Oil Honda, took primary tires after a Lap 41 stop, and Power alternates, using them with his push-to-pass to execute a pass for the lead on the outside coming out of Turn 1 on Lap 51.

"200 wins in IndyCar just shows Roger's determination and the way his team works and his passion for winning." said Dixon, "It's a real pleasure to drive for him".

"I know how good Dixon is at saving fuel and going fast so it was good to see the checkered flag", Power said.

The rookie battled seasoned veterans like Power, Sebastian Bourdais, and Scott Dixon cleanly throughout the event and earned their respect.

"It was the first time in my career I've had to save fuel like that", the rookie from Canada admitted. "And they were like, 'We need this, ' and I'm like: 'I'm trying".

Dixon, the New Zealander with Chip Ganassi Racing, methodically maneuvered through the field after starting 18th. "They've made good gains on that", said Dixon, whose previous best this season was fourth at ISM Raceway in Phoenix.

Power had to survive a full-course caution that shrank a more than four-second lead to less than one, and then dealt with light rain that began with 13 laps to go.

Despite losing out on Victory Lane, Wickens has plenty to smile about.

The four-time series champ had a disastrous qualifying to start from the ninth row of the grid but he demonstrated his undoubted ability to wring every last drop from the vehicle as he charged through the field for a confidence-building podium. The harder I pushed to try and close the gap each time, I would just burn the rears (tires) off. There were nine lead changes and 214 passes.

Three-time Indy 500 victor Helio Castroneves soldiered home sixth in his first IndyCar start of the season.

There were no cautions in last year's race.

It's the only auto in the first two days of the month to have an engine problem.

Simon Pagenaud put in a solid effort to come back and clinch eighth place after he was hit into the Turn 2 gravel trap on the opening lap by the No.20 Ed Carpenter entry of Jordan King.

"I've never raced in a category where you had to save fuel, " said Wickens, who came to IndyCar this season from Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters. It was a tough weekend for the 31-year-old.

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