IndyCar: Aleshin OK after Montoya’s car on top of him at Turn 8 in Toronto (VIDEO)

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TORONTO – A serious-looking accident has occurred at the Verizon IndyCar Series’ second race of the Honda Indy Toronto weekend (LIVE on NBCSN/NBC Sports Live Extra) just past the 12-lap mark, and put the 65-lap race under its second full course caution of the race.

But the incident involving Mikhail Aleshin and Juan Pablo Montoya primarily, plus hometown hero James Hinchcliffe and two other cars, fortunately has seen Aleshin emerge unscathed. See the NBCSN clip above, and a separate YouTube clip here.

Steady rain began to fall just after the race started and intensified at the 90-degree right-handed Turn 8. The Turn 8 patch was slick and triggered a series of offs.

Montoya nosed into the tire barriers, Hinchcliffe lost control of his car and collected Montoya’s right rear wheel guard with his left side. Race one winner Sebastien Bourdais and Charlie Kimball ran into the runoff area to avoid the incident.

But Aleshin locked up and went straight into Montoya’s car, and his No. 7 SMP Racing Honda was wedged directly underneath Montoya’s No. 2 Hawk Performance Chevrolet.

It was a wreck reminiscent of one in a CART race in 1998 at Road America, when Alex Barron ran on top of Bryan Herta’s stopped car. Barron’s car needed to be craned away and lifted off Herta’s.

This was the situation here; Montoya’s car was lifted off Aleshin’s while the INDYCAR Holmatro Safety Team tended to Aleshin. Aleshin, the Russian rookie, walked out under his own power, and returned to the pit lane.

“I realized that only when I started to brake. I smacked the other car. I ended up under the car,” Aleshin told NBCSN’s Marty Snider. “It was not such a great feeling at all. I’m sorry for the spectators and everyone who supports me. The most important thing is everything is fine.

“As you can see, there are some marks here in the helmet,” he added. “I was sitting under the car, it was getting so much closer. I could not breathe at all. I was just sitting under the car. Impossible to breathe, and not nice feeling at all.”

Aleshin tweeted his helmet pic after the incident.

Josef Newgarden led the race at the Lap 19 restart, on a wet/dry track.

Al Unser Jr. to race Pikes Peak Hill Climb for first time in 29 years

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Two-time Indianapolis 500 winner Al Unser Jr. is coming out of retirement to race again.

Unser Jr., who turns 56 on April 19, will compete in the 96th Broadmoor Pikes Peak International Hill Climb on June 24. It will be the first time Unser has raced at Pikes Peak in 29 years, since the 1989 event.

Unser won the Hill Climb and was named “King of the Mountain” in the 1983 event.

Unser said in 2007 that he was retiring from racing and had no plans to race in the future. However, he has taken part since then in some selected vintage racing events.

Speaking of vintage cars, Unser is slated to drive a 1936 Chevrolet Sedan in this year’s Hill Climb, according to race organizers.

He’ll compete with a number of luminaries including eight-time Hill Climb winner Paul Dallenbach; Layne Schranz, who will be competing in his 25th “Race to the Clouds”; 23-time champion Clint Vahsholtz; 25-time Hill Climb competitor David Schmidt II and three-time Climb winner Spencer Steele.

Unser recently returned to IndyCar racing as a consultant with Harding Racing, which is beginning its first full season in the series with Gabby Chaves behind the wheel.