If a monsoon, a delayed race and a wrecked race car can't stop Will Power, the other drivers have bigger problems than originally thought.
Power overcame a damaged race car and a wet track to win the Sao Paulo 300 today, a day after the race was postponed because of heavy rain on the streets of Sao Paulo. He has started every race this season from pole position, and today drove to victory for Penske after Takuma Sato had to pit for fuel with about 10 minutes left in the timed race.
Power finished 4.6 seconds ahead of Graham Rahal and 7.9 seconds in front of Penske teammate Ryan Briscoe. It was his second win in four races this season, giving him the points lead going into the next race—the Indianapolis 500.
Rahal’s second-place finish with Chip Ganassi Racing was his best since a third place in Japan in 2009.
Former points leader and defending Indy 500 champion Dario Franchitti recovered from a crash to finish fourth in the race, while Oriol Servia came home in fifth. Dario now trails Will by 14 points going into Indianapolis.
Power got his second consecutive win in Sao Paulo despite damage to his car. He lost control exiting a turn early in the race and brushed the wall with his left-rear tire. The damage dropped him into ninth place, and he had to pass four cars at the end to get back into the lead.
The race restarted with 14 laps completed after torrential rain on Sunday had made track conditions unsafe, forcing it to be stopped twice and eventually postponed. They were able to complete 55 of the scheduled 75 laps to make the race official.
Mike Conway, Justin Wilson, Takuma Sato and rookies James Hinchcliffe and JR Hildebrand rounded out the top 10. Scott Dixon came home in 12th position, just in front of EJ Viso and Marco Andretti. Viso had a surprisingly good run on the wet track, and was up to second place before receiving a drive-through penalty for repeatedly blocking Marco Andretti.
The Series will now take an immediate turnaround. The next four races will be on oval tracks, beginning with the Indianapolis 500 on May 29. Teams will arrive in Indianapolis before you know it, as Opening Day is scheduled for May 14th.
After this weekend’s mess in Sao Paulo, everyone in the series is really looking forward to Indianapolis. So are the fans. We can only imagine how bad the ratings were for this race in Brazil. The best way for the series to put this race behind them would be to focus on the next event. Luckily for us all, the next event will have all of our attention.
The focus will now be on the Greatest Spectacle in Racing, with numerous storylines leading up to the race. There will be much more to come soon, so stay tuned!