Power Dominates in Sonoma, Takes Win in Indy Grand Prix of Sonoma
Team Penske's Will Power continued his recent domination at Infineon Raceway on Sunday, taking the victory in the Indy® Grand Prix of Sonoma.
It was Power's second consecutive win in the Sonoma Valley and his fifth of the season as he inched closer to points leader Dario Franchitti in the chase for the IZOD IndyCar® Series championship.
Power, who qualified on the pole, led 71 of the 75 laps over the twisting 12-turn, 2.303-mile road course. Team Penske swept the top three spots, with Helio Castroneves second and Ryan Briscoe third.
"This is like home for me," said Power. "To start 1-2-3 and finish 1-2-3, what a dream weekend."
Franchitti (Target Chip Ganassi Racing) and teammate Scott Dixon completed the top five. With the win, Power now trails Franchitti by 26 points with just four races left in the season. Power has posted wins in two of his last four races.
"We have a legitimate shot at the championship," said Power, who became the first repeat winner at Infineon Raceway since INDYCAR first visited Sonoma in 2005. "We're 26 points out and we have two road courses and two ovals left. We can get this….this was also great momentum for the team with a 1-2-3 finish."
For Castroneves, this matched his best finish of the season (Edmonton).
"It's been a roller-coaster season for me but this weekend it's been all about the team," said Castroneves, who won in Sonoma in 2008. "We deserved this. It was a great result. It's rare to start 1-2-3 and finish 1-2-3."
This marks the first 1-2-3 finish for Team Penske since Mid-Ohio in 1994. Moreover, Team Penske also won the Toyota/Save Mart 350 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series race in Sonoma in June (Kurt Busch).
In other racing on Sunday, San Rafael's Patrick O'Neill made it a clean sweep, taking the win in the Formula Car Challenge main event. O'Neill also won the Formula Car Challenge race on Saturday.
"I put the marks together and went for it," O'Neill said. "It's been a great weekend and I'm ready for a beer."