A hurried fourth and final visit to pit lane enabled Will Power to use his Chevrolet engine fully at the conclusion of Saturday’s 248-lap contest at Gateway Motorsports Park and secure his third win of 2018 and second on an oval.
- Results: 2018 Bommarito Automotive Group 500
Power, who stopped for fuel on Lap 231, ran at full speed for the final 17 laps of the 248-lap race, beating out both Scott Dixon and Alexander Rossi who rank above him in the points standings.
Operating on a four-stop strategy, Power took his No. 12 Team Penske Chevrolet the checkered flag 1.3 seconds ahead of Rossi. The win marked the 35th of his career, tying him for seventh on the all-time Indy car win list with Bobby Unser.
Rossi’s three-stop strategy nearly worked with the Andretti Autosport driver extending his final stint to 71 laps. While the effort didn’t net Rossi the victory, it did keep him ahead of Dixon. Having entered the weekend with a 29-point deficit, Rossi leaves Gateway three points closer, trailing Dixon by 26.
Dixon, who led the most laps and claimed two bonus points, crossed the finish line 1.5 seconds behind Rossi and 2.8 seconds behind Power. Because the starting lineup was set by entrant points after qualifying was canceled due to rain, Dixon started from the pole and maintained the lead until Power took over past the halfway point.
Simon Pagenaud ended the night in fourth, adding a second Team Penske car to the top five. Zach Veach completed the group in his Andretti Honda having advanced 11 positions from his 16th-place start. Veach, like the rest of the top five excepting Rossi, executed a four-stop strategy. During a pit stop exchange, he led his first lap in a Verizon IndyCar Series race.
Spencer Pigot, Josef Newgarden, Ed Jones, Takuma Sato and Graham Rahal rounded out the top 10 with Jones finishing as the final driver on the lead lap.
Sebastien Bourdais, scored in the last position, did not complete a lap after spinning in Turn 2 on Lap 1 to bring out the race’s first of two cautions.
The second yellow flag appeared on Lap 173 for Ryan Hunter-Reay whose No. 28 DHL Honda slowed on the backstretch. After coasting to pit lane, the car received some help to get to its pit box before being officially retired with a mechanical issue.
Next up for the series is the first Indy car race at Portland International Raceway since 2007. The Portland Grand Prix weekend is scheduled for Aug. 31 to Sept. 2.