POWER GRABS BEST OVAL FINISH WITH FIFTH IN CHICAGO
Will Power has gained his best IndyCar Series finish on an oval with a sensational fifth place in the PEAK Motor Oil Indy 300 at Chicagoland Speedway in Joliet, Illinois today.
The outstanding result means that Power finishes 12th in the 2008 IndyCar Series Driver Standings and third in the Bombardier Rookie of the Year standings.
Power started from 10th in the #8 Aussie Vineyards -- Team Australia entry and ran in the front part of the field throughout the 200-lap race.
The Australian was able to claw his way into the top five with a combination of strong car speed and slick pit stops. The result is a sign of the progress both Power and the Aussie Vineyards crew have made with their oval racing package over the course of the season.
Power's previous best finish on an oval was ninth place at Iowa Speedway on 22 June 2008. This finish gives Power six top 10 finishes this season, including the Champ Car finale in Long Beach, California, as well as seven top 10 qualifying performances from 17 races in his debut IndyCar Series season.
Power and Team Australia will now focus their attention on their home race, the Nikon Indy 300 on the streets of Surfers Paradise in Queensland, Australia. Power is a two-time polesitter for that event, which will be a non-points scoring IndyCar race this season.
Will Power: #8 Aussie Vineyards - Team Australia Honda/Dallara/Firestone
"I have never had so much fun in a race," said Power.
"The Aussie Vineyards - Team Australia car was good, and the crew did a great job in the pits. We picked up positions on every stop. We had good restarts. Everything was good.
"This has been a challenging season. The whole team has worked very hard, and I am just so happy to be able to have a good finish, especially on a mile-and-half oval. It really shows the progress the whole KV Racing Technology team has made this year."
Craig Gore: Aussie Vineyards - Team Australia
"Will and the team did an outstanding job today and a top five on an oval for us is an excellent achievement," said Gore.
"It really shows that the hard work from Will and the Aussie Vineyards crew is paying off. My hat goes off to them all and they deserve to be very pleased.
"Now we look ahead to Surfers Paradise and the Nikon Indy 300. That is a massive event for us and we are aiming for the win."
-credit: kvr/team australia