Ed Carpenter was leading at the halfway point of Saturday night’s Firestone 600 at Texas Motor Speedway, only to yield a few laps later to early race leader Will Power
Carpenter was at the front of the pack on Lap 124 of the 248-lap event. Scott Dixon was running second, followed by early race leader Will Power in third, Simon Pagenaud in fourth and Tony Kanaan in fifth.
Sixth through 10th were Juan Pablo Montoya, Mikhail Aleshin, Josef Newgarden, Indianapolis 500 winner Ryan Hunter-Reay and Helio Castroneves.
The race was put under its second caution period on Lap 121 after Justin Wilson and Sebastien Bourdais made contact, putting both cars into the wall.
Based upon TV replays, it appeared Wilson was low on the apron, began spinning and slid up the racetrack into Bourdais.
“I got a good run on Sebastien coming down the back straight, he tried to block it and I went down and dove underneath, but he kept coming and forced me below the white line on turning,” Wilson said. “I thought he was going to leave me alone, but he only left half a lane and I had two wheels on the apron and obviously just lost control. It’s just really disappointing.”
Bourdais wasn’t sure whether he or Wilson were at fault in the incident.
“I got a bit checked up by my teammate and then Justin got a run after that,” Bourdais said. “I thought I’d hug the inside to protect the position to Justin. All of a sudden, I heard, looking inside, we were in Turn 3 and Justin ended up on the apron and hit the banking, spun out and got me on the way up.
“Honestly, I don’t know if it’s a racing incident, his fault or my fault. If it’s my fault, I apologize.”
Several teams waited to pit, with Carpenter, Power and others coming in on Lap 126. Power beat Carpenter off pit road to regain the lead on Lap 127.
On Lap 135, Hunter-Reay came into the pit and shut his car down, apparently due to some type of motor or mechanical problem.
Marco Andretti, who brought out the first caution, will be scored last on the 22-car finishing grid, dropping out of the race just three laps in after the motor on his car expired.
Saturday’s race marked the first event under new rules eliminating double-file restarts, which IndyCar officials announced Friday.
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