After earning the Verizon P1 Award with a track-record qualifying lap for the Angie's List Grand Prix of Indianapolis, Will Power was asked about the prospects of a Month of May sweep at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Power mulled it over for a few seconds and the broad smile that lasted more than a few seconds while he was holding the $10,000 pole winner check returned.
"You have four sessions during this month that you want to be P1 in," he said. "One is qualifying for the GP, winning the GP, qualifying for the '500' and winning the '500.' It's possible, obviously. That's got to be the goal this month. My focus nowadays is so much on the '500' more than it ever was now that I've won a championship. But you can imagine just winning the GP and the '500,' it would be unbelievable."
Power, the reigning Verizon IndyCar Series champion, is halfway there.
Driving the No. 1 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet, Power steamed to victory in the 82-lap Angie's List Grand Prix of Indianapolis by 1.5023 seconds over Graham Rahal on the 2.439-mile, 14-turn Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course. Power's 25th career victory broke a tie with Bobby Rahal and Ralph DePalma for 16th on the all-time Indy car list and tied Gordon Johncock for 15th.
Power is the fifth different winner in as many road/street course races this season.
“I’m halfway there. The Indy 500 is on my mind and I’m very determined to get it done,” said Power, who seeks to become the first driver to win on the road course and 2.5-mile Indianapolis Motor Speedway oval. “In this race, the first lap was as fast as the last lap. Honestly, I think it was staying ahead at the start and the restart and then it was managing that traffic and just the pit sequence.
“My crew did an awesome job and saved enough fuel there at the end with Graham coming hard. I’m really happy to win here at this awesome facility. I just want to get one two weeks from now.”
Rahal, carrying the Honda banner in the No. 15 Steak ‘n Shake entry for Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing, was runner-up for the second consecutive race.
“The pit stops were good, we were able to make some moves when we had to. I gave it everything I had, just as Barber (Motorsports Park on April 26), to catch Power. He was just a little too strong,” said Rahal, who qualified 17th.
Team Penske's Juan Pablo Montoya finished third, his third podium finish of the season, and retained his championship points lead. He takes a five-point advantage (171-166) over Power into the Indianapolis 500 Mile Race on May 24.
Four-time Champ Car champion Sebastien Bourdais finished a season-high fourth (he's been in the top 10 in every race) in the No. 11 Team Mistic E-Cigs-KVSH Racing Chevrolet, and Charlie Kimball advanced nine spots relative to his qualifying position to finish a season-high fifth in the No. 83 Novo Nordisk Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet.
For the second time in three races, there was one caution flag. A full-course caution was called by Race Control on Lap 1 as multiple cars were involved in an incident entering Turn 1. It ruined the chances for victory for front-row starter Scott Dixon and Helio Castroneves, who qualified third in his 300th Indy car start. Following two caution laps, it was a spirited contest among the 25 entries.
Castroneves rallied for sixth and Dixon placed 10th.
Teams will be back at Indianapolis Motor Speedway on May 11 for practice on the 2.5-mile oval in preparation for the 99th Running of the Indianapolis 500 Mile Race. Qualifications are May 16-17.
The May 11 track schedule: Rookie orientation test for Stefano Coletti and refresher tests from noon-1 p.m. Track opens to all cars from 2-7 p.m. (ET). Watch all the practice sessions, supported by real-time Timing & Scoring on RaceControl.indycar.com. The official entry list will be released before track activity.