Kanaan, Rahal Lead Honda Effort in Texas

6/10/2017

Kanaan, Rahal Hang On To Lead Honda Effort in Texas

·       Tony Kanaan recovers from contact, penalty to finish second

·       Graham Rahal follows double wins in Detroit with fourth place in Texas

·       Despite crash, Scott Dixon continues to lead drivers’ championship

 

FORT WORTH, Texas (June 10, 2017) – Tony Kanaan and Graham Rahal persevered through a crash-strewn Verizon IndyCar Series race Saturday night at Texas Motor Speedway, with Kanaan finishing second and Rahal fourth for Honda in the Rainguard Water Sealers 600.

 

Honda drivers and teams dominated qualifying Friday night at the 1.5-mile Texas Motor Speedway oval, sweeping the top eight starting positions.  But crashes in tonight’s 248-lap contest eliminated eight of 13 Honda entries – and damaged a ninth.  Fortunately, all drivers escaped injury in the multiple collisions.

 

Alexander Rossi was the first Honda front-runner to drop out, crashing into the Turn 3 wall, on Lap 37, after making light contact with the Chip Ganassi Racing entries of Scott Dixon and Tony Kanaan while all three jockeyed for third place.

 

The major crash of the night took place on Lap 152, eliminating six cars, including five Honda drivers.  Kanaan, on the inside of three cars heading up the backstretch, made contact with the middle-running James Hinchcliffe, who then collected Mikhail Aleshin to set off a chain-reaction through the field.  Hinchcliffe, Aleshin, Tristan Vautier – who earlier had led for 15 laps – Ed Jones, and Ryan Hunter-Reay were all eliminated from the race, which resulted in a 20-second “stop and hold” penalty for Kanaan in pit lane once racing resumed.

 

As the race entered its final 20 laps, both Scott Dixon and Takuma Sato appeared poised to contest the win with the Team Penske entries of Simon Pagenaud and Will Power.  However, Sato dropped his left side tires into the grass at the start of Lap 244 and lost control, spinning into first the car of Dixon and then the wall.  The Honda of Max Chilton also was damaged in the crash, falling from sixth place to finish the race in pit lane, classified eighth. 

 

Power then took the checkers behind the safety car as the race ended under caution.  Kanaan recovered from his penalty and fought his way back onto the lead lap to finish second, while Graham Rahal successfully avoided the multitude of crashes to work his way into the lead pack for the final laps, finishing fourth.

 

Dixon, credited with a ninth-place finish, continues to lead the drivers’ championship after nine of 17 races with 326 points, with Pagenaud second with 313 points, followed by Indy 500 champion Sato, third with 312 points.

 

Video recaps from this weekend’s Honda IndyCar Series racing activities in Texas, as well as Honda Formula 4 and Formula F1600 action from the famed Indianapolis Motor Speedway, are available on the "Honda Racing/HPD" YouTube channel. Produced by the Carolinas Production Group, the video packages can be found at: https://www.youtube.com/HondaRacingHPDTV. 

 

After a run of five consecutive May-June event weekends, the Verizon IndyCar Series now takes a week off, then resumes June 25 at the scenic Road America circuit in Wisconsin for the Kohler Grand Prix.

 

Tony Kanaan (#8 Chip Ganassi Racing Honda) started 4th, finished 2nd: “It was a tough night, just very intense from the first to the last lap. I’m going to apologize to Hinch [James Hinchcliffe] for what happened [the crash in Lap 151].  I just got up a little too high. We paid the price for my mistake. We got a penalty, paid the penalty, and we were able to finish second. I’m proud of the team for sticking with me and fighting our way back up front. It was just an intense race. A lot of things happened and you had to avoid a lot of things to finish. I’m not going to lie, I’m glad it’s over.”

 

Graham Rahal (#15 Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing Honda) started 11th, finished 4th: “"It was a crazy night, with a lot of guys taking a lot of chances. I'm glad that our car doesn't have a ding on it. We weren't the prettiest thing out here tonight, but the Mi-Jack boys worked very hard and I'm pleased with the end result. I would have liked to have won it, and I actually felt like I had the car to do it, but I struggled with track position all night and I was lucky to not get involved in all those crashes. I'm obviously disappointed in myself to stall on that last [pit] stop, but I'm probably lucky because I cleared the [crash] right after that. I'm looking forward to Road America, which should be a good one for us. Coming off three top fives in a row, hopefully we can go have another good race with a good result."

 

Steve Eriksen (Vice President and COO, Honda Performance Development) on tonight’s race: “It was a pretty disappointing result, especially after our strong showing in qualifying.  We had several cars that could have contended for the victory, but lost so many due to crashes, almost two-thirds of the Hondas in the field.  We’re thankful that no one was injured, and will now take advantage of the off-weekend coming up to regroup and prepare for Road America.”

 

 

Verizon IndyCar Series RainGuard Water Sealers 600

Circuit:              Texas Motor Speedway (1.5-mile oval) Fort Worth, Texas

2016 Winner:     Graham Rahal (Rahal Letterman Lanigani Racing Honda) 144.901 mph average

Weather:           Clear, windy, warm, 82 degrees F

 

Top-10 Race Results:

 

Fn.

St.

Driver      

Team

Manufacturer

Laps

Notes

 

  1.

  9.

Will Power

Team Penske

Chevrolet

248

140.491 mph average speed

  2.

  4.

Tony Kanaan

Chip Ganassi Racing

Honda

248

+0.1978 seconds (caution)

 

  3.

12.

Simon Pagenaud

Team Penske

Chevrolet

248

 

 

  4.

11.

Graham Rahal

Rahal Letterman Lanigan

Honda

248

 

 

  5.

20.

Gabby Chaves

Harding Group Racing

Chevrolet

248

 

  6.

15.

Marco Andretti

Andretti Autosport

Honda  

248

 

 

  7.

21.

Conor Daly

A.J. Foyt Racing

Chevrolet

247

Running

  8.

  6.

Max Chilton

Chip Ganassi Racing

Honda

245

Running  

 

  9.

  2.

Scott Dixon

Chip Ganassi Racing

Honda

243

Did not finish – crash

 

10.

  8.

Takuma Sato

Andretti Autosport

Honda  

243

Did not finish – crash

               

Other Honda Results

 

14.

16.

James Hinchcliffe

Schmidt Peterson Mtspts

Honda

151

Did not finish – crash

 

15.

  7.

Mikhail Aleshin

Schmidt Peterson Mtspts

Honda

151

Did not finish – crash

16.

  5.

Tristan Vautier

Dale Coyne Racing

Honda  

151

Did not finish – crash

 

17.

19.

Ed Jones-R

Dale Coyne Racing

Honda

151

Did not finish – crash   

 

19.

13.

Ryan Hunter-Reay

Andretti Autosport

Honda  

151

Did not finish – crash

21.

  1.

Charlie Kimball

Chip Ganassi Racing

Honda

  41

Did not finish – mechanical

 

22.

  3.

Alexander Rossi

Andretti Autosport

Honda  

  36

Did not finish – crash  

               

 

HPD

©2017 American Honda Motor Co., Inc.
Privacy Policy  |  Terms and Conditions