IndyCar points shift after new structure of Month of May


The Verizon IndyCar Series points standings have shifted a bit after the Indianapolis 500, and all the extra points that came with it.

Here’s a table breakdown of points after the Grand Prix of Indianapolis, then after the Indianapolis 500. The GP of Indy breakdown is on the left, the post-Indy 500 breakdown is on the right.

P # Driver Pts P # Driver PRE-INDY INDY TOTAL
1 12 Power 149 1 28 Hunter-Reay 148 126 274
2 28 Hunter-Reay 148 2 12 Power 149 85 234
3 77 Pagenaud 143 3 3 Castroneves 102 118 220
4 3 Castroneves 102 4 77 Pagenaud 143 68 211
5 9 Dixon 102 5 25 Andretti 89 103 192
6 20 Conway 93 6 34 Munoz 61 99 160
7 25 Andretti 89 7 2 Montoya 70 82 152
8 19 J.Wilson 87 8 11 Bourdais 81 62 143
9 10 Kanaan 82 9 9 Dixon 102 30 132
10 11 Bourdais 81 10 19 J.Wilson 87 36 123
11 8 Briscoe 80 11 8 Briscoe 80 41 121
12 14 Sato 75 12 14 Sato 75 38 113
13 67 Newgarden 71 13 98 Hawksworth 71 42 113
14 98 Hawksworth 71 14 67 Newgarden 71 38 109
15 2 Montoya 70 15 27 Hinchcliffe 56 49 105
16 83 Kimball 67 16 10 Kanaan 82 22 104
17 17 Saavedra 63 17 17 Saavedra 63 38 101
18 18 Huertas 63 18 7 Aleshin 59 37 96
19 34 Munoz 61 19 20 Conway 93 93
20 7 Aleshin 59 20 18 Huertas 63 30 93
21 27 Hinchcliffe 56 21 83 Kimball 67 25 92
22 15 Rahal 55 22 16 Servia 55 33 88
23 16 Servia 55 23 26 Busch 80 80
24 41 Plowman 12 24 15 Rahal 55 24 79
25 26 Montagny 8 25 21 Hildebrand 66 66
  26 22 Karam 57 57
  27 20 Carpenter 53 53
  28 33 Davison 34 34
  29 5 Villeneuve 29 29
  30 68 Tagliani 28 28
  31 6 Bell 22 22
  32 63 Mann 21 21
  33 41 Plowman 12 6 18
  34 91 B.Lazier 11 11
  35 26 Montagny 8 8

With that established, here’s how everyone got the points they did at the Indianapolis 500. Indianapolis points were determined in two ways: Saturday qualifying Positions 1-33 were awarded points in decreasing order from 33 for first down to 1 for 33rd, plus a run of 9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 for the Fast Nine on Sunday. Then in Sunday’s race, double points were awarded per finishing position, with 1 bonus point on offer for leading one lap and 2 for leading the most laps. 

1 28 Hunter-Reay 23 103 126
2 3 Castroneves 37 81 118
3 25 Andretti 32 71 103
4 34 Munoz 35 64 99
5 12 Power 36 49 85
6 2 Montoya 21 61 82
7 26 Ku.Busch 24 56 80
8 77 Pagenaud 32 36 68
9 21 Hildebrand 26 40 66
10 11 Bourdais 10 52 62
11 22 Karam 13 44 57
12 20 Carpenter 42 11 53
13 27 Hinchcliffe 38 11 49
14 98 Hawksworth 22 20 42
15 8 Briscoe 17 24 41
16 17 Saavedra 8 30 38
17 14 Sato 16 22 38
18 67 Newgarden 28 10 38
19 7 Aleshin 18 19 37
20 19 J.Wilson 20 16 36
21 33 Davison 6 28 34
22 16 Servia 5 28 33
23 9 Dixon 19 11 30
24 18 Huertas 4 26 30
25 5 Villeneuve 7 22 29
26 68 Tagliani 3 25 28
27 83 Kimball 15 10 25
28 15 Rahal 14 10 24
29 10 Kanaan 11 11 22
30 6 Bell 12 10 22
31 63 Mann 9 12 21
32 91 B.Lazier 1 10 11
33 41 Plowman 2 4 6

Note the biggest movers in the standings from pre-Indy 500 to post-Indy 500:

  • Carlos Munoz, +13, P19 to P6
  • Juan Pablo Montoya, +8, P15 to P7
  • James Hinchcliffe, +6, P21 to P15
  • Scott Dixon, -4, P5 to P9
  • Charlie Kimball, -5, P16 to P21
  • Mike Conway, -13, P6 to P19 (did not race)

Note also four drivers, Oriol Servia, Martin Plowman, Alex Tagliani and Jacques Villeneuve, incurred 10 driver and entrant point penalties for unapproved engine changes. Those 10 points were taken out of their Indianapolis 500 points totals.

There were not giant fluctuations in the positions, evidenced by the fact the top four in the standings entering the Indy 500 are still the top four leaving it. The points gaps themselves though, have increased, between drivers who either did or did not have a good month of May.

As we head to Detroit this weekend, the championship could swing yet again, as we head to our first double-header weekend of 2014.

In 2013, Scott Dixon thoroughly dominated the doubleheaders as he scored 83 more points than any other driver in the six races, on the three doubleheader weekends.

Chances are the points will swing once more through this weekend.

Force India gives Renault tips ahead of Hulkenberg’s arrival for 2017

SAO PAULO, BRAZIL - NOVEMBER 11:  Nico Hulkenberg of Germany driving the (27) Sahara Force India F1 Team VJM09 Mercedes PU106C Hybrid turbo on track during practice for the Formula One Grand Prix of Brazil at Autodromo Jose Carlos Pace on November 11, 2016 in Sao Paulo, Brazil.  (Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images)
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Force India has sent Renault an early Christmas present by giving tips on how to look after Nico Hulkenberg ahead of his arrival at the team for the 2017 Formula 1 season.

Hulkenberg announced back in October that he would be leaving Force India at the end of the 2016 season, joining Renault for its second year back in F1 as a constructor.

In a tongue-in-cheek post on Force India’s Twitter account, the team gave Renault some advice on how to look after Hulkenberg.

“He answers the name of ‘Nico’, but ‘Hulk’ will do in public,” it reads.

“He has been a beloved member of our family for longer than we can remember, but it is time for him to go and find his own feet.

“Nico is friendly and of good nature, but there are just a few, simple rules to follow to take care of him:

  • Do not feed him after midnight.
  • Do not get him wet. Actually, just kidding. He’s pretty good in the wet.
  • Even though the resemblance can be uncanny, do not refer to him as ‘Johnny Bravo’ (if you do, let us know how it goes.

“And most importantly, and we can’t stress this enough…

  • Do NOT make him angry.

“Best of luck for your life together, your friends at Sahara Force India.”

Force India had previously left Hulkenberg’s helmet and race suit under its Christmas tree as a gift for Renault.

Porsche was quick to chip in on the claim that you shouldn’t feed Hulkenberg after midnight, with the German having ran pretty well in the early hours at Le Mans en route to victory in 2015.

The F1 season may be over, but the Twitter fun between the teams will continue through the winter.

Ricciardo: Verstappen’s arrival at Red Bull pushed me on

KUALA LUMPUR, MALAYSIA - OCTOBER 02:  Daniel Ricciardo of Australia and Red Bull Racing celebrates with Max Verstappen of Netherlands and Red Bull Racing after their 1-2 finish during the Malaysia Formula One Grand Prix at Sepang Circuit on October 2, 2016 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.  (Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images)
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Daniel Ricciardo says that Max Verstappen’s arrival at Red Bull four races in to the 2016 Formula 1 season helped him to raise his game as a driver.

Verstappen  swapped seats with Daniil Kvyat after the Russian Grand Prix in May, with Ricciardo’s former teammate moving back down to Red Bull’s feeder team, Toro Rosso.

Ricciardo and Verstappen enjoyed a strong 17-race stint as teammates through 2016, each taking one win and enough points to lift Red Bull up to second place in the constructors’ championship.

Reflecting on his season, Ricciardo admitted that he was unsure about how quickly Verstappen would fit in at Red Bull and get up to speed, but that he soon realized the quality of the Dutchman.

“It was a big thing. Especially that first weekend in Spain which was pretty crazy, and not just because he won,” Ricciardo said.

“I suspect the team didn’t know how good Max was and where he was going to fit. His win really gave us good energy and pushed us on to get stronger.

“In Spain everybody was watching, wondering if we’d made a mistake swapping Dany and Max around. I think his win was a relief more than anything. And it definitely pushed us on. Certainly it pushed me on.

“I think I’d been at the right level from the start of the season, which may have caused some of the commotion in the first place because I had a better start than Dany.

“With Max, I felt we were pushing each other from the off. He was closer to me in qualifying and so naturally that provides a spur because you’re looking at each other’s data and finding an extra bit here and there. It makes you better.”

Ricciardo conceded that the amicable relationship with Verstappen could become tense in 2017 should the pair become embroiled in a title fight, but hopes they can retain their mutual respect.

“Well, I’m not naïve. If we’re fighting for wins I’m sure the pressure and tension will rise,” Ricciardo said.

“But hopefully we’ll be able to look each other in the eye and say ‘good job’ afterwards.”

F1 2016 Driver Review: Lewis Hamilton

NORTHAMPTON, ENGLAND - JULY 10:  Lewis Hamilton of Great Britain and Mercedes GP celebrates his win on the start finish straight after the Formula One Grand Prix of Great Britain at Silverstone on July 10, 2016 in Northampton, England.  (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)
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Lewis Hamilton

Team: Mercedes AMG Petronas
Car No.: 44
Races: 21
Wins: 10
Podiums (excluding wins): 7
Pole Positions: 12
Fastest Laps: 3
Points: 380
Laps Led: 566
Championship Position: 2nd

Luke Smith (@LukeSmithF1)

Lewis Hamilton’s year was an odd one. While he was at his brilliant best on a number of occasions, racking up 10 wins – more than any driver not to win the championship in F1 history – there were a handful of costly errors that ultimately cost him the title.

Yes, the reliability woes with the Mercedes power unit through the year hurt his title bid enormously. But that’s racing; bad luck is part and parcel of it, just as Nico Rosberg found out at points in 2014 and 2015.

Instead, Hamilton needs to look at himself to see where he could have done better in 2015. Poor starts in Australia, Bahrain, Italy and Japan were all damaging to his title challenge, as were weekends he was off the boil in Singapore and Baku.

Hamilton proved once again that he has a good balance between his life outside of F1, which he continues to quite clearly enjoy, judging by his Snapchat escapades, and his efforts on-track. He remains the strongest driver in the field. But this year, his old, successful mind-games were unable to knock Rosberg down. Nico had the answer this time around. Let’s see what 2017 brings for the Briton as he searches for a fourth World Championship.

Tony DiZinno (@tonydizinno)

The year of Lewis revolved as much around him off-track as it did on it. Sometimes, his on-track runs ended through a spate of Mercedes mechanical woes, which were as unexpected as they were frustrating after a flawless winter.

Then there were his spats with the press, his Snapchat antics in Suzuka and his otherwise nonchalant approach to some outside-the-car commitments. From the outside, it seemed Hamilton was less engaged this year until he needed to be, then made peace with the fact he’d done all he could do as the year went on.

The year was defined, performance-wise, by his starts – and how poor some of them were. A number of wins were lost as a result. Even so, he still beat Rosberg 10-9 in wins and 12-8 in poles. The area he beat Rosberg in a category he wouldn’t want is DNFs – that crushing engine failure in Malaysia joined with the pair’s clash in Spain.

Hamilton was his usual peerless self at times though, and his rally to end the season with four straight wins was admirable in the face of a roller coaster year up to that point. His drive at Abu Dhabi was tenacious and smart; he backed Rosberg into the field as his only shot of snatching the title. He remains F1’s most fascinating character and out-and-out fastest driver, if not its current World Champion.

F1 2016 Driver Review: Nico Rosberg

ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - NOVEMBER 27:  Nico Rosberg of Germany and Mercedes GP celebrates with his second place trophy after securing the F1 World Drivers Championship during the Abu Dhabi Formula One Grand Prix at Yas Marina Circuit on November 27, 2016 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.  (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)
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As part of MotorSportsTalk’s review of the 2016 Formula 1 season, Luke Smith and Tony DiZinno look back on each driver’s year, starting today with World Champion Nico Rosberg.

Nico Rosberg

Team: Mercedes AMG Petronas
Car No.: 6
Races: 21
Wins: 9
Podiums (excluding wins): 6
Pole Positions: 8
Fastest Laps: 6
Points: 385
Laps Led: 489
Championship Position: 1st

Luke Smith (@LukeSmithF1)

Assuming that he doesn’t backtrack on his decision to retire from racing at any point in the future, 2016 will be remembered as the strongest year of Nico Rosberg’s motorsport career. Twice burned by championship defeats to Lewis Hamilton, the German bit back in 2016 with a new approach that yielded the ultimate reward.

Sure, his “one race at a time” rhetoric was boring; we like our champions to have some fire in their bellies. However, it worked wonders. Rosberg was no longer taking baggage and stress from race to race as he was through 2014 and 2015. Each race was a clean slate.

There were low moments, such as the clash with Hamilton on-track in Austria, but Rosberg recovered from his mid-season wobble nicely. Four second places is hardly the way to sign off a championship-winning season, but Rosberg cared little – he’d got the job done.

The greatest shame for 2017 is that we won’t get the chance to see if Rosberg can build on this breakthrough year and beat Hamilton again. Instead, he’s ‘one and done’; that’s it.

Tony DiZinno (@tonydizinno)

In the last year of the current regulations, Nico Rosberg always needed to win this year’s World Championship if he was to ensure he ever won one in his career. Rare do you think of him as being 31 years old, in the sport 11 seasons, because he still has a fresh face look – albeit not as young as his initial “baby face” days with Williams, and the birth of a potential mullet to match his World Champion father Keke.

Alas, Rosberg had whatever momentum carried over from winning the last three races of last season, and opened the year with four wins on the trot. The 2016 version of Rosberg did not crack despite the contact with Lewis Hamilton in Spain, nor really, through Hamilton’s midsummer run of six wins in seven races. Only in Austria did it ever look like Rosberg was really on the back foot.

His starts helped propel him all season and that crucial post-summer run of form with wins in Spa, Monza, Singapore and Suzuka was what shifted the momentum back in his corner. He trailed Hamilton by as many as 19 points but by Suzuka was up 33. He brought it home as needed to the finish, and is a deserving World Champ.