Will Power won the Bommarito Automotive Group 500 at Gateway Motorsports Park. Alexander Rossi came in second and Scott Dixon finished in third place.
The win for Power was his third of the year and his 35th career victory. Earlier this year Power won the Indianapolis Motor 500.
“That’s the most fun way to go racing is when you can just go hard,” said Power. “You don’t have to think about lifting and being in a fuel slot.”
Power did not worry about fuel saving however, Alexander Rossi did worry about fuel saving and gambled with a conserve fuel saving strategy, pitting only three times during the race, he was able to capture a second place. His last pit stop was on lap 177 of the 248 lap race. After the race he jumped out of the car and celebrated like he won the race.
“I am a loss for words, said Rossi describing his team’s fuel saving strategy. “I’m not sure how we made that happen today, that’s unbelievable. I wasn’t full throttle at all for the last 70 laps.”
Scott Dixon was frustrated after the race.
“Bit of the bummer,” said Dixon. “We got stuck deciding to save fuel or go for it. I’m a bit mad at myself tonight for not making a decision quicker on which one to take.
Dixon’s indecision cost him a higher place finish.
Scott Dixon, series points leader, was the pole sitter. Yesterday’s qualifying was rained out so the cars were lined up based on the current points standing. Dixon took advantage of the opportunity and led for 138 of the 150 laps and only fell out of first during green stop pit stops.
On lap 150, Will Power was able to pass Dixon and take control of the race.
Then on lap 173 Ryan Hunter Ray lost power and tried to coast back to the pits but he could not make all the way back and this brought on the yellow flag. On lap 177 pits opened and all the leaders came in for service. Will Power’s team did a fast pit stop that allowed Power to exit the pits just a few feet ahead of Scott Dixon. Power quickly jumped to a big lead on the restart and again began to dominate the lead.
As the race began to march to 248 lap end…several drivers began to slow to save fuel and minimize the pit stops including Rossi, eventual 2nd place finisher.
But not Power. He surrendered the lead at lap 231 for a fuel only three second pit stop and Dixon took the lead but he dove into the pits seven laps later for a two second fuel only pit stop. As the other competitors did the same, Will Power was able to again assume the lead for with 9 laps to go and held on for the victory.
A large crowd again flocked to Gateway Motorsports Park to witness the return of Verizon Indycar Series. The series returned to Gateway last year after a long departure from racing in St. Louis region. Last year the large crowd really impressed race officials and Indycar drivers. And this year the fans did not disappoint and again came out in large numbers and was recognized by many of the drivers who were interviewed by the public announcer during pre-race driver introductions much to the delight of the patrons.
Story By: Kevin Proot / St. Louis Motor Racing News
Photos By: Larry Vancil / St. Louis Motor Racing News
1. (4) Will Power, Chevrolet, 248, Running
2. (2) Alexander Rossi, Honda, 248, Running
3. (1) Scott Dixon, Honda, 248, Running
4. (6) Simon Pagenaud, Chevrolet, 248, Running
5. (16) Zach Veach, Honda, 248, Running
6. (14) Spencer Pigot, Chevrolet, 248, Running
7. (3) Josef Newgarden, Chevrolet, 248, Running
8. (12) Ed Jones, Honda, 248, Running
9. (13) Takuma Sato, Honda, 247, Running
10. (7) Graham Rahal, Honda, 247, Running
11. (21) Pietro Fittipaldi, Honda, 247, Running
12. (11) Ed Carpenter, Chevrolet, 247, Running
13. (15) Tony Kanaan, Chevrolet, 246, Running
14. (10) Marco Andretti, Honda, 246, Running
15. (8) James Hinchcliffe, Honda, 246, Running
16. (18) Matheus Leist, Chevrolet, 246, Running
17. (20) Max Chilton, Chevrolet, 244, Running
18. (19) Gabby Chaves, Chevrolet, 242, Running
19. (17) Charlie Kimball, Chevrolet, 235, Running
20. (5) Ryan Hunter-Reay, Honda, 172, Mechanical
21. (9) Sebastien Bourdais, Honda, 0, Contact