They asked one of the drivers in pre-race what the secret to winning at Mid-Ohio was, and the answer was “be in the Ganassi car”. That seemed like sound advice, considering the team had won 10 races here and 5 in a row leading up to yesterday’s start. After chaos ensued at turn 4 on the opening lap, however, one Ganassi car was out of the race (having collected Marco Andretti’s Snapple-sponsored Honda along the way) and the other, piloted by Scott Dixon, was dead last.
This looked like the end of Ganassi’s dominance at Ohio to the non-believers. To Scott Dixon, it was simply lap 1, and he set about the business of passing every single car on his way to an impressive, miraculous last-to-first place win.
It was a shocking drive, even if you already knew that the only names ahead of Dixon’s on the all-time win list are Unser, Andretti, and Foyt.
“They were the class of the field today,” said Sebastien Bourdais, who finished 2nd after starting on the pole and who looked, pre-race, like he was the man to beat. “They made impossible fuel mileage. We didn’t have much for these guys today. We will keep digging and keep learning and we will get it right.”
Further back in the field, young Josef Newgarden was putting in impressive times and staying within a second of the leading Sebastien Bourdais before a pit road penalty relegated him to a mid-pack finish. Perhaps the most impressive performance of the day, though, happened in the Penske pits- Montoya and Power came in for fresh tires under caution – which, in itself, is huge – but both picked up 2 spots, leap-frogging guys like Pagenaud and Hinchliffe in the process.
It was a great race, is what I’m saying, with enough action and drama to keep even casual fans riveted. You can see how Mid-Ohio played out for everyone else, below, then try to explain why IndyCar isn’t the most popular sport in the world in the comments section.
|34||Carlos Munoz (R)||Honda||4|
|2||Juan Pablo Montoya||Chevy||11|
|7||Mikhail Aleshin (R)||Honda||14|
|98||Jack Hawksworth (R)||Honda||16|
|18||Carlos Huertas (R)||Honda||17|
|14||Takuma Sato||Honda||-1 Lap|
|3||Helio Castroneves||Chevy||-4 Laps|