Indianapolis, IN — The wait is over for Will Power, who after 11 tries, was finally able to pull his car into victory lane on Memorial Day weekend at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway as he captured the title in the 102nd running of the Indy 500.
“It runs through my head the last year more than ever because I’ve won so many races and poles, led more laps than anyone. I just hadn’t done it here. I’ve been thinking, Am I going to finish my career without a 500 win?” said an exhausted Power after the race.
Power led 59 of the 200 laps but made the final pass on with only four laps to go as the leader Stefan Wilson and 2nd place driver Jack Harvey came in to pit, putting Power at P2. This would allow Power to all but seal the race, bearing that he didn’t have any mistake nor a caution would come out.
“Yeah, I was trying very hard to get Harvey. I had a couple big runs, pushed out wide. I was giving it everything, thought I was going to get them.” said Power, “Then Harvey is going to pit, I have a great shot at Wilson because he has no one in front of him to help him in the draft. Then they both pit. It’s like, the gates opened, it was amazing. Just full rich go, go, hold on.”
In those final four laps, he would have to hold off the pole winner Ed Carpenter, who was doing all he could to get to Power but was unable to have success.
“He maybe seemed to get a little better than us. I would probably say we were a little stronger early in the day. My car seemed to pick up a little more understeer as the day went on. We couldn’t seem to make enough adjustments to overcome that.” explained Carpenter post-race.
Looking at Notables in the Field
Power and Carpenter combined to lead 124 of the 200 laps, while there were an Indy 500 record 15 lead changes. Carpenter would have to settle for 2nd, while Scott Dixon came in 3rd, after a strong performance and win in Saturdays “Pit Stop Challenge.” 2016 Indy 500 winner Alexander Rossi finished 3rd after starting all the way back in 32nd.
This was the final Indy 500 race for Danica Patrick, which ended in utter disappointment after finding the wall after getting loose on lap 68. This was just one of seven crashes, of which included the first one seeing last years winner Takuma Sato running into the back o James Davison, who was running extremely slow in the middle lane, leaving Sato nowhere to go, ending both of their days on lap 48.
Hungry for more?!
After the race, Power made it clear that he wants to be doing this for a long time, with no plans to hang up the wheel any time soon.
“Absolutely, it was the last box to tick, to be considered as a very successful driver. I’m not done. I’m not done. Like, I still have plenty of time left to win more 500s and championships and races.” said a very direct Power.
We will have to wait for next years Indy 500 to see if Power can repeat.