In one of the greatest finishes race fans will ever see, Andretti Autosport’s James Hinchcliffe passed A.J. Foyt Racing’s Takuma Sato in the final turn of the Itaipava Sao Paulo Indy 300 to gain his second victory of the 2013 season.
The final margin of victory was just .3463 of a second.
Hinchcliffe told the media (via IndyCar.com) about the experience of winning a race on the very last lap and how he was able to pull off the move:
There’s no cooler way to win a race -- in the last corner of the last lap. Takuma was making that race car really wide and he was defending the inside pretty well, almost too well a couple times. He just outbroke himself just a little bit and I was able to do a high-low (pass) and got the win.
As great as this victory was for Hinchcliffe, he has been feast or famine thus far this year. Just four races into the season, the No. 27 car has already won twice and not finished the race twice.
For Hinchcliffe and the GoDaddy team to contend for an overall points championship, the driver and the entire crew must find the happy medium that leads to solid finishes even when he isn’t winning.
Sato captured the second spot on the podium, but not before using several questionable blocking techniques during the waning laps of the race. He was joined on the podium by third-place finisher Marco Andretti. Oriol Servia and Josef Newgarden finished fourth and fifth respectively.
The battle between Sato and Andretti is taking place off the track on the IndyCar Championship standings as well, with Sato mounting a 12-point lead over Andretti after this race. Helio Castroneves falls to third overall after a mediocre run Sunday, and Hinchcliffe climbs to fourth after his big win.
All of the focus now shifts to next week’s Indianapolis 500. After a wild finish this week, the excitement over next week’s marquee race is through the roof.
All stats courtesy Indycar.com.
Results via NBCSports.com.
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The official Twitter page of the IZOD IndyCar Series shared a great photograph to start the day of teammates and friends Ryan Hunter-Reay and E.J. Viso:
IndyCar Series @IndyCar
Teammates @RyanHunterReay & @EJVISO start on the front row in the #IndySaoPaulo at 11a ET on @NBCSN! #IndyCar http://t.co/NkEJ9zre1m2013-5-5 13:00:33
After winning the Sao Paulo Indy 300 three times in a row, IndyCar reporter Glenn Locke shared the news that he had some kind of issue on the track and was done for the day:
Not only did racing legend Mario Andretti take to Twitter to congratulate race winner James Hinchcliffe, but he also made sure it was noted that his grandson Marco Andretti made the podium:
Mario Andretti @MarioAndretti
Fantastic win MrMayor@Hinchtown great podium @MarcoAndretti #IndySaoPaulo This was an incredibly entertaining street race @NBCSN @GoDaddy2013-5-5 18:08:53
After one of the wildest finishes in street-course history, IndyCar’s public relations Twitter shared a great comment from Hinchcliffe after the win:
INDYCAR PR @INDYCARPR
"There's no cooler way than to win a race than on the last corner of the last lap." - #IndySaoPaulo winner @Hinchtown2013-5-5 17:59:51