Elevated to a front row start after pole sitter Helio Castroneves’ engine penalty, James Hinchcliffe promptly took the lead from Will Power on the opening lap and has been able to stay there throughout the first half of the Iowa Corn Indy 250.
Hinchcliffe maintained his lead through pit stops under yellow after a debris caution at Lap 38, which caused him to lose a six-second advantage on the high-banked short oval. But after the race went back green on Lap 52, Hinchcliffe got back to building up his lead in the early stages of the stint.
Marco Andretti tried to stay within striking distance of Hinchcliffe in the second stint, but soon lost second position to Graham Rahal at Lap 105. A short time later, green flag pit stops began around Lap 115 and Hinchcliffe cycled back into the lead after stopping at Lap 117.
Rahal has stayed in second place, while Andretti has kept third spot. Simon Pagenaud, who vaulted 20 spots to a fifth-place finish last year at Iowa is fourth, and Oriol Servia is giving Panther’s No. 4 car a good run in fifth position.
INDIANAPOLIS – Rather than the traditional December unveil, this year’s reveal newest likeness added to the Borg-Warner Trophy came Tuesday at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum.
Takuma Sato got to see the result of the sculpting done by William Behrends and then turned from wax, clay and ceramic into sterling silver on Tuesday evening, as the winner of the 101st Indianapolis 500 presented by PennGrade Motor Oil saw his face revealed on the trophy.
Sato took the No. 26 Ruoff Home Mortgage Honda for Andretti Autosport to the win in thrilling fashion this year over Helio Castroneves, denying the Brazilian his fourth Indianapolis 500 victory in the process. It atoned for his near-miss in 2012, driving for Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing, the team he’ll return to in 2018.
It’s been a whirlwind last week-plus for Sato, doing the podium interviews at the Japanese Grand Prix, reflecting on his Indianapolis 500 triumph, then sharing the victory spoils with another Japanese pilot in Yoshihide Muroya, who won the Red Bull Air Race World Championship at Indianapolis this weekend.
Photos of Sato’s face on the most unique trophy in sports are below. This post will be updated following tonight’s full unveil. (All photos: Walt Kuhn)