Montoya dominating first half of second race in Detroit

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DETROIT – Juan Pablo Montoya has thus far dominated the opening half of the second race in the Chevrolet Dual in Detroit Presented by Quicken Loans, as he looks for his third win of the Verizon IndyCar Series season.

Through the opening 35 laps, the polesitter has led 32, with Will Power leading two and Scott Dixon leading one.

Power got the lead on the start through Turn 1, but Montoya passed him back on the inside into Turn 4 on Lap 3.

James Jakes gambled on a switch from Firestone’s rain tires to dry slicks, but the move backfired as he ran anywhere from eight to 15 seconds per lap slower on the slicks on a still mostly wet track.

Dixon runs second, 8.5 seconds behind, having inherited the position when Power pitted on Lap 27 to change a steering wheel. The defending series champion reported to ABC, via his race strategist Tim Cindric, that moisture came into the steering wheel, which caused shifting issues.

It has dropped Power outside the top 10, back to 13th.

Josef Newgarden, Sebastien Bourdais and Helio Castroneves complete the top five.

Sage Karam was a big mover in the first stint, moving from 20th up to 12th before his first stop.

Gabby Chaves stayed out longest on the first stint, to Lap 24, but dropped from as high as eighth to 20th after his stop. Dixon, Bourdais and Conor Daly also ran long on the first tint.

We won’t have a repeat winner in Detroit, as Carlos Munoz was first out with apparent water issues causing smoke out the back of his car six laps into the race.

In the “truth is stranger than fiction” department, Munoz mirrors Houston race one winner Carlos Huertas last year. Both were first out in the second race of a doubleheader weekend, after they got their first career win.

However, if Montoya wins, it will still be three wins in a row for Colombians.

Through the opening 35 laps, we have also run caution-free – a departure from the seven cautions on Saturday.

Steve Torrence takes NHRA points lead with Gatornationals victory

NHRA Gainesville Steve Torrence
Jeff Robinson/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images
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GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Two-time defending NHRA Top Fuel champion Steve Torrence took the points lead Sunday in the AMALIE Motor Oil Gatornationals, beating his father, Billy, in the final round at Gainesville Raceway.

Torrence had a 3.809-second run at 322.11 mph to win for the third time this year and 39th overall. He is now on track for another championship despite missing the season opener.

“We’ve got some good momentum and to be in the points lead, it’s a testament to how hard these guys work,” Steve Torrence said after the NHRA Gainesville victory. “We’ve just got to stay focused and concentrate on what the task at hand is, and that’s trying to win a championship. These guys give me an unbelievable race car and you just try not to screw it up.”

Ron Capps won in Funny Car, Alex Laughlin in Pro Stock and Matt Smith in Pro Stock Motorcycle.

Capps raced to his second win this year and 66th overall, beating Tim Wilkerson with a 3.937 at 323.12 in a Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat.

Laughlin topped Aaron Stanfield with a 7.068 at 204.76 in a Chevrolet Camaro for his first win this season and fourth in his career. Smith rode to his first victory in 2020 and 25th overall, topping Andrew Hines with a 6.843 at 196.99 on an EBR.