Will Power was the dominating force that the rest of the IndyCar Series drivers had to challenge again on a road course. Having already secured the new series award as the road course king, the Aussie did what he does best, take the lead and keep it. He did have a bit of help from his Team Penske crew with great work in the pits.
"I really like leading. I always have. Whenever I lead, I'm always able to pull a gap, be very aware of saving my tires, saving more fuel," Power said. "I'm a driver; of course I love to be out front. It is good for me. I can't stand being behind someone getting held up."
Except for the two laps tha Dario Franchitti held the lead, it was all Power from the start to the checkered flag. Pole winner Franchitti and his teammate Scott Dixon were in the hunt for the 75 laps of action but in the end, Power was .7432 of a second ahead of the Kiwi to take the honors, along with increasing his points lead. Power now has 514 to Franchitti's 455. Dixon sits third with 419.
"All in all, you know, for Team Target it was a good day. To be in the top three, both, was pretty big," Dixon said. "The tough decision for our side was what to do with Dario because obviously he's the closest in points to Will. We felt we were in a good position to maybe challenge Will and get close to him and maybe win the race and take some points away from him that way. We didn't have enough. Obviously, Will won the race. We probably didn't help Dario's chances in that. So that was probably the downside to today."
Franchitti said, "I think we passed Ryan in the pit stop sequence. They came on the radio and said Scotty was on reds. So I let him go because it would definitely suit me for him to go and pass Will. I let him go. He chased after him. The yellow came out. On the restart, I could see he was giving it everything he could to get past him.
"At that point on the blacks, I was just trying to stay ahead of Ryan who was on blacks behind me. I had nothing for the two guys in front. So, yeah, a little frustrated there. But one of those things," added the Scotsman.
The final four events are on ovals -- an arena that Power does not have the experience on while the two Chip Ganassi Racing drivers have proved their skills on while Power has yet to notch an oval win this year.
"We're confident going in (ovals)," said Dixon on the final four events. "We have to work together as a team, obviously finish 1-2 to try to overcome the points deficit at the moment."
Far more important to the Aussie is he won the one race that would not only give him the all-important edge for an excellent chance at taking the IndyCar title this year but he overcame the memories of last year's severe crash at the Infineon Raceway. During the first practice last year, Power was airlifted to Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital with compression fractures of his L2 and L4 vertebrae.
Today, he was standing on top of the world with the victory: "Unbelievable. I watched this race from the hospital bed last year. You know, I said it all year: I'm coming back to win this thing because I thought this track owes me after what happened."
Ryan Bricoe was fourth for the Penske team followed by teammate Helio Castroneves. Dreyer & Reinbold Racing's Justin Wilson was sixth with two of the Andretti Autosport racers behind him. Tony Kanaan edged out teammate Ryan Hunter-Reay for seventh.
Rounding out the top 10 were Graham Rahal in one of the Newman/Haas Racing cars followed by Dale Coyne Racing's rookie Alex Lloyd.