INTERNATIONAL WRAP: INDYCAR BELLE ISLE & AUSSIES OVERSEAS
INDYCAR – BELLE ISLE DETROIT – ROUND 7 & 8
Graham Rahal swept both races (rounds) on the Indycar series at Belle Isle in Detroit over the weekend.
Race 8 went with out a caution, until James Hinchcliffe’s car stopped on course on Lap 66. With the field grouping up behind the safety car, Spencer Pigot’s pulled off to the side of the road in plume of smoke. That brought out the red flag to give marshals time to clean up both incidents. Leaving a two lap dash to the finish when the race was restarted.
Rahal was never troubled and pulled away from Josef Newgarden who finished in second. Aussie Will Power finished third ahead of Indy 500 winner Takuma Sato.
Saturday’s Race 7 was also a dominate performance from Rahal, taking a comfortable win over Scott Dixon, still recovering from his big Indy 500 crash, in second. James Hinchcliffe finished that race in third.
Esteban Gutierrez on his debut in Indycar had a best result of 14th in the Sunday’s second race of the weekend.
Kiwi, Scott Dixon, maintains his lead in the championship standing, with an eight point advantage over Helio Castroneves. Takuma Sato sits in third while Graham Rahal moved up nine spots with his strong weekend to move into sixth in the standings.
MOTOGP – ITALIAN GP – ROUND 6
It was an all Italian affair at Mugello for the MotoGP with Ducati’s Andrea Dovizioso taking out the Italian GP.
Yamaha’s Valentino Rossi lead his home GP early, before team mate Maverick Vinales snuck past on lap 4. Rossi dropping back to fourth while.
It was then down to Vinales and Dovizioso to battle for the lead. The local rider, Dovizioso, claiming the lead on lap 14 and doing the honours at his manufacturers home round.
But the story of the race was another Italian rider, Danilo Petrucci, who carved his way from ninth to finish on the podium. It looked at one stage that Petrucci would claim second place, after he got past Vinales. However it wasn’t to be, Vinales claiming second place back a few laps later, with Petrucci settling into third.
Aussie, Jack Miller finished 15th after struggling to improve upon his starting position.
Second place was enough for Maverick Vinales to maintain his lead in the MotoGP championship standings with 105 points. The win for Andrea Dovizioso (79 points) moving him past Valentino Rossi (75 points) into second.
NASCAR – DOVER – ROUND 13
Jimmie Johnson won the NASCAR race at Dover this morning, making the most of the final restart to do it.
The race went into overtime when David Ragan crashed between turns one and two with just three laps left to run. It was that restart that Johnson, made his move passing Kyle Larson, who had lead the majority of the race to that point, to claim the win.
The restart wasn’t without further issues, with huge wreck on that back straight, as the leaders entered turn three.
Johnson’s win at the Monster Mile put him equal on 83 career race wins with NASCAR Hall of Famer Cale Yarborough.
“Obviously I didn’t need that last caution,” Larson said after the race.
“Yeah, I mean, Jimmie is the best of our time, probably the best of all time. He just has obviously a lot more experience than I do out on the front row late in races and executed a lot better than I did. I’ve got to get better at that and maybe get some more wins.”
Larson sits in second in the standings, just nine points behind Martin Truex Jr. While Johnson moves up to sixth.
Remi Gardner finished 14th in the Moto2 race at Mugello. After starting 11th, he struggled, dropping down to 16th. Gardner managed to regroup to claim 2 championship points at the end of the race.
CARRERA CUP JAPAN
After qualifying 19th for both Carrera Cup Japan races, Stephen Grove moved through the field to finish 13th in each race in what was his first trip to Fuji Raceway in Japan. Earning himself an Outstanding Performance Award in the process.
After the weekend, Grove said “It was great to receive the Outstanding Performance Award in both races for passing the most cars. I didn’t qualify too well so it was great to pass a few cars during the races. The joint race was more difficult as I had to start towards the back of the field. With that many cars on track it was very hard to pass. It was a bit of a precession but still very enjoyable racing within such a huge field.”
For a more detailed analysis of the weekends international motorsport, pick up the next issue of Auto Action Magazine. In the mean time make sure you follow Auto Action on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for all the latest updates.
Date posted: June 5, 2017