PORTLAND, Oregon – Will Power may not be in the hunt for the NTT IndyCar Series championship anymore, but he still had a great reason to celebrate Sunday afternoon when he won the Grand Prix of Portland.
Power took the lead of the race on lap 52 of the race at Portland International Raceway when Scott Dixon’s car came to a halt due to a battery issue.
He then went on to lead the remainder of the race through the checkered flag, holding off Felix Rosenqvist in a late-race restart.
“It was a pretty tough race,” Power told NBC Sports following his victory. “I had Rosenqvist’s constant pressure.
“There at the end we could slowly pull away and I felt like ‘oh yeah, this is going to be good,’ and then a yellow flag [came out] and I was like ‘oh, come on man!'”
“But, [I was] determined to get a good restart. Just so stoked to be back again in victory lane. It helps the teams, it helps the other guys [teammates Josef Newgarden and Simon Pagenaud] take some points away.”
With the 37th victory of his career in the books, Power is now tied with Sebastien Bourdais for sixth on the all-time wins list.
Rosenqvist maintained his position in second through the checkered flag, while Alexander Rossi finished third.
“It just ultimately wasn’t an awesome day for us, but it was still generally good, I guess,” Rossi said. “Regardless, it’s great to be on the podium.”
Rossi now moves back up into second place in the overall point standings, 41 points behind leader Newgarden with one race remaining in the 2019 season.
Polesitter Colton Herta finished fourth while Newgarden finished fifth.
“I wish we could have been a little higher up but starting 13th, but I think we can’t be disappointed with how things turned out,” Newgarden said.
Spencer Pigot finished sixth, while Pagenaud finished the race seventh. He now sits third in the point standings, 42 points behind Newgarden and 1 point behind Rossi.
Matheus Leist, Sebastien Bourdais and Charlie Kimball rounded out the top 10.
Several drivers retired from the race, including James Hinchcliffe, Conor Daly, Zach Veach, and Graham Rahal – all of whom would be collected in a multi-car accident on lap 1.
Entering the infamous Turn 1 chicane, Rahal miscalculated his braking and made contact with Veach, sending Veach’s car into Hinchcliffe’s No. 5 machine. Rahal then made contact with Conor Daly.
After retiring from the race, Rahal took responsibility for causing the accident.
I’m disappointed in myself for the first corner incident, and sorry to those who’s races it affected. The last 2 years have been certainly “trying” and that came to a head today. Contrary to every twitter troll on the planets claims, I certainly never intend to do that.
— Graham Rahal (@GrahamRahal) September 1, 2019
“I’m disappointed in myself for the first corner incident, and sorry to those who’s races it affected,” Rahal tweeted.
“The last 2 years have been certainly ‘trying’ and that came to a head today. Contrary to every twitter troll on the planets claims, I certainly never intend to do that.”
The NTT IndyCar Series now heads to WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca for the championship-deciding race, the Firestone Grand Prix of Monterey. Live race coverage begins Sunday, September 22 at 2:30 p.m. ET on NBC.