Using INDYCAR’s advanced statistics and data, we’ve developed a weighted formula to rate the NTT IndyCar Series drivers after each race this season. Welcome to the Power Rankings – and it doesn’t mean that Will Power will always be included.
How does it work? We look at more than just results of the event, also factoring in qualifying results, on-track passes, on-track position passes and average running position throughout the race to come up with each driver’s rating.
The rankings are based on the four most recent races (St. Petersburg, Circuit of The Americas, Barber Motorsports Park, Long Beach). The most recent race is weighted the most in the ranking and the oldest race the least.
So, following Sunday’s Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach, here’s a look at the top NTT IndyCar Series drivers:
THERE’S A NEW NO. 1
Alexander Rossi – Josef Newgarden leads the point standings, but Alexander Rossi has moved to the top spot in the Power Rankings. How is this possible when Newgarden hasn’t finished outside the top four this season? Rossi’s dominant performance at Long Beach scored higher than any other winner this season, including Newgarden’s win in the season opener at St. Petersburg. Rossi has also outperformed Newgarden at Barber. With Long Beach and Barber weighted more than the first two races, when Newgarden scored higher than Rossi, the math just adds up.
ON THE RISE
Ryan Hunter-Reay – The Andretti Autosport driver started the season by digging a hole with a DNF at St. Petersburg, but he’s returned to form in the last three races. A fifth-place finish at Long Beach helped solidify his position at No. 5 in the rankings. When the St. Pete DNF is dropped from the rating following the next race, the INDYCAR Grand Prix on May 11, expect RHR to climb further up the charts.
STILL LOOKING TO BOUNCE BACK
Colton Herta – Back-to-back finishes outside of the top 20 have seen the rookie tumble from the Power Rankings for the first time this season. The good news for Herta and Harding Steinbrenner Racing is the next two races are at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, where Herta swept the Indy Lights presented by Cooper Tires events in 2018.
THE TOP 10
1. Alexander Rossi (Last Rank: 4) – See above
2. Josef Newgarden (Last Rank: 1) – Another race, another podium finish for the NTT IndyCar Series points leader. Only a dominating weekend from Rossi keeps the Team Penske driver from staying No. 1 for the fourth race in a row.
3. Scott Dixon (Last Rank: 3) – Dixon has three podiums in four races, a strong start for the Chip Ganassi Racing team known for being stout as the season heads down the final stretch.
4. Takuma Sato (Last Rank: 2) – The Japanese driver falls two spots in the ranking and the point standings, but maintained his strong start to 2019 with his third top-10 finish in four races for Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing.
5. Hunter-Reay (Last Rank: 7) – See above
6. Will Power (Last Rank: 5) – Power saw a podium finish slip out of his hands when he ran into a runoff area at Long Beach. He turned around his 2018 season with a sweep at Indy last May. Could he do it again in 2019?
7. James Hinchcliffe (Last Rank: 6) – The Mayor of Hinchtown had another good day at Long Beach, pushing his car to ninth after starting 15th.
8. Graham Rahal (Last Rank: Not ranked) – A return to the rankings for Rahal, who shook off a DNF at Barber to post a fourth-place finish at Long Beach. Block or no block at the end of the race, it was a strong showing.
9. Simon Pagenaud (Last Rank: Not ranked) – The third Team Penske driver cracks the top 10 with another solid finish at Long Beach. He’s won twice at the INDYCAR Grand Prix, so look out.
10. Sebastien Bourdais (Last Rank: 8) – Like Hunter-Reay, Bourdais dug out of an early hole with top-five finishes at COTA and Barber. Expect him to rise in the rankings with a solid finish at IMS.
Dropped out: Felix Rosenqvist (9) and Herta (10)