LEXINGTON, Ohio. — Will Power led a Team Penske sweep of the top two spots in the first race of two at the Mid-Ohio Sportscar Course on Saturday.
Power led all but a handful of laps starting from the pole position when the green flag dropped. The win is Power’s first at Mid-Ohio and his 38th career win.
“That’s probably the first race in about ten years that we’ve just gone hard,” Power said. “We said ‘screw this, man. Let’s just go hard’ and see what happens. And we won the race.”
The second-place finish for Josef Newgarden was huge as his championship rival Scott Dixon finished in 10th.
“It was a pretty straight forward day,” Newgarden said. “Wish we could have been a little bit better. We were a couple of tenths slower a little bit per lap.”
“We just need to be a little sportier than we were,” he continued. “We picked up some good points. One step higher would have been better. We’ll try to make that happen tomorrow.”
Newgarden picked up 20 points in the championship standings as a result of his second-place finish, cutting Scott Dixon’s championship lead to 76 points.
Alexander Rossi was third getting his second podium of the year after having had an unlucky season. Graham Rahal was fourth after having started eighth and Ryan Hunter-Reay rounded out the top five.
The drivers will now turn right around and prepare for the second race of the doubleheader weekend at Mid-Ohio. Certainly, a challenge, says Power.
“Definitely have an ice bath and massage,” Power said. “We’ll be alright. Everyone is in the same boat and we’ll be ready for tomorrow.”
Race 2 will go off at 1:00 p.m EDT. There will be no practice session tomorrow, just qualifying and then the race.