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2014 Standings
After Toronto
Driver Standings

Driver Standings
1 Helio Castroneves 533
2 Will Power 520
3 Ryan Hunter-Reay 464
4 Simon Pagenaud 462
5 Juan Pablo Montoya 428
6 Scott Dixon 387
7 Carlos Munoz (R) 384
8 Tony Kanaan 380
9 Marco Andretti 375
10 Sebastien Bourdais 358
11 Ryan Briscoe 344
12 James Hinchcliffe 330
13 Charlie Kimball 317
14 Justin Wilson 311
15 Mikhail Aleshin 298
16 Josef Newgarden 288
17 Jack Hawksworth (R) 287
18 Graham Rahal 266
19 Carlos Huertas (R) 265
20 Takuma Sato 234
21 Sebastian Saavedra 229
22 Mike Conway 218
23 Ed Carpenter 168
24 Oriol Servia 88
25 Kurt Busch (R) 80
26 JR Hildebrand 66
27 Sage Karam (R) 57
28 Luca Filippi 46
29 James Davison (R) 34
30 Jacques Villeneuve 29
31 Alex Tagliani 28
32 Townsend Bell 22
33 Pippa Mann 21
34 Martin Plowman (R) 18
35 Buddy Lazier 11
36 Franck Montagny 8

Rookie of the Year
1 Carlos Munoz 384
2 Mikhail Aleshin 298
3 Jack Hawksworth 287
4 Carlos Huertas 265
5 Kurt Busch 80
6 Sage Karam 57
7 James Davison 34
8 Martin Plowman 18

Wins
T1 Ryan Hunter-Reay 3
T2 Will Power 2
T2 Simon Pagenaud 2
T2 Mike Conway 2
T5 Helio Castroneves 1
T5 Carlos Huertas 1
T5 Ed Carpenter 1
T5 Juan Pablo Montoya 1
T5 Sebastien Bourdais 1

Podium Finishes
T1 Will Power 6
T1 Helio Castroneves 6
3 Ryan Hunter-Reay 5
4 Tony Kanaan 4
T5 Carlos Munoz 3
T5 Juan Pablo Montoya 3
T7 Marco Andretti 2
T7 Simon Pagenaud 2
T7 Mike Conway 2
T10 Carlos Huertas 1
T10 Scott Dixon 1
T10 Josef Newgarden 1
T10 Graham Rahal 1
T10 Charlie Kimball 1
T10 Ed Carpenter 1
T10 Jack Hawksworth 1
T10 Mikhail Aleshin 1
T10 Sebastien Bourdais 1
Manufacturer Standings:
1 Chevrolet 2056
2 Honda 1042

Lap Leaders:
1 Will Power 353
2 Tony Kanaan 326
3 Helio Castroneves 241
4 Ryan Hunter-Reay 167
5 Ed Carpenter 116
6 Juan Pablo Montoya 74
7 Takuma Sato 67
8 Sebastien Bourdais 60
9 Simon Pagenaud 59
10 James Hinchcliffe 56
11 Scott Dixon 44
12 Jack Hawksworth 32
13 Justin Wilson 25
14 Marco Andretti 22
T15 Mike Conway 15
T15 Josef Newgarden 15
17 Sebastian Saavedra 14
18 Graham Rahal 10
T19 Oriol Servia 7
T19 Carlos Huertas 7
21 Ryan Briscoe 5
22 Mikhail Aleshin 4
23 Alex Tagliani 3

Entrant Points
Pos. # Entrant Points
1 3 Team Penske 533
2 12 Team Penske 520
3 28 Andretti Autosport 464
4 77 Schmidt Peterson Hamilton Motorsports 462
5 2 Penske Motorsports 428
6 9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing 387
7 20 Ed Carpenter Racing 386
8 34 Andretti Autosport/HVM 384
9 10 Target Chip Ganassi Racing 380
10 25 Andretti Autosport 375
11 11 KVSH Racing 358
12 8 NTT Data Chip Ganassi Racing 344
13 27 Andretti Autosport 330
14 83 Novo Nordisk Chip Ganassi Racing 317
15 19 Dale Coyne Racing 311
16 7 Schmidt PetersonMotorsports 298
17 67 Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing 288
18 98 BHA/BBM with Curb-Agajanian 287
19 15 Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing 266
20 18 Dale Coyne Racing 265
21 14 A.J. Foyt Racing 234
22 17 KV/AFS Racing 229
23 16 Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing 134
24 26 Andretti Autosport 88
25 21 Ed Carpenter Racing 66
26 22 Dreyer and Reinbold 57
27 33 KV Racing Technology 34
28 5 Schmidt Peterson Motorsports 29
29 68 Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing 28
30 6 KV Racing Technology 22
31 63 Dale Coyne Racing 21
32 41 A.J. Foyt Racing 18
33 91 Lazier Partners Racing 11

Finishing Average
1 Helio Castroneves 5.38
T2 Kurt Busch 6.00
T2 Will Power 6.00
4 Simon Pagenaud 6.92
5 Sage Karam 9.00
6 Scott Dixon 9.61
7 J.R. Hildebrand 10.00
8 Tony Kanaan 10.23
9 Ryan Hunter-Reay 10.38
T10 Juan Pablo Montoya 11.15
T10 Sebastien Bourdais 11.15
12 Ryan Briscoe 11.38
13 Justin Wilson 11.92
14 Carlos Munoz 12.00
15 James Hinchcliffe 12.46
16 Oriol Servia 12.5
17 Marco Andretti 12.69
18 Ed Carpenter 12.75
19 Alex Tagliani 13.0
20 Charlie Kimball 13.23
21 Takuma Sato 13.46
22 Mikhail Aleshin 13.61
23 Jacques Villeneuve 14.0
24 Mike Conway 14.66
25 Graham Rahal 15.0
26 James Davison 16.0
27 Carlos Huertas 16.07
28 Josef Newgarden 16.92
29 Sebastian Saavedra 17.0
30 Jack Hawksworth 17.16
31 Luca Filippi 18.50
32 Martin Plowman 20.5
33 Franck Montagny 22.0
34 Pippa Mann 24.0
35 Townsend Bell 25.0
36 Buddy Lazier 32.0


Pole Positions
T1 Takuma Sato 2
T1 Will Power 2
T1 Helio Castroneves 2
T4 Ryan Hunter-Reay 1
T4 Sebastian Saavedra 1
T4 Ed Carpenter 1
T4 Simon Pagenaud 1
T4 Juan Pablo Montoya 1
T4 Scott Dixon 1
T4 Sebastien Bourdais 1

Appearances in the Firestone Fast Six
1 Ryan Hunter-Reay 5
T2 Helio Castroneves 4
T2 Will Power 4
T3 James Hinchcliffe 3
T3 Scott Dixon 3
T3 Jack Hawksworth 3
T7 Simon Pagenaud 2
T7 Josef Newgarden 2
T7 Tony Kanaan 2
T7 Sebastien Bourdais 2
T11 Takuma Sato 1
T11 Marco Andretti 1
T11 Sebastian Saavedra 1
T11 Mike Conway 1
T11 Juan Pablo Montoya 1
T11 Ryan Briscoe 1
T11 Luca Filippi 1

Qualifying Average
1 Helio Castroneves 5.53
2 James Hinchcliffe 6.90
3 Ed Carpenter 7.00
4 Luca Filippi 7.66
5 Simon Pagenaud 7.69
6 Will Power 7.76
7 Scott Dixon 8.84
8 J.R. Hildebrand 9.00
9 Sebastien Bourdais 9.76
10 Carlos Munoz 10.3
11 Tony Kanaan 10.53
12 Ryan Hunter-Reay 10.61
13 Juan Pablo Montoya 10.84
14 Takuma Sato 11.69
15 Kurt Busch 12.0
16 Marco Andretti 12.61
T17 Josef Newgarden 12.92
T17 Ryan Briscoe 12.92
19 Justin Wilson 13.0
20 Jack Hawksworth 14.5
21 Mike Conway 14.66
22 Mikhail Aleshin 14.84
23 Graham Rahal 15.38
24 Sebastian Saavedra 16.53
25 Charlie Kimball 17.15
26 Carlos Huertas 17.84
27 Franck Montagny 21.0
28 Pippa Mann 22.0
29 Alex Tagliani 24.0
30 Martin Plowman 24.5
31 Townsend Bell 25.0
32 Jacques Villeneuve 27.0
33 James Davison 28.0
34 Sage Karam 31.0
35 Buddy Lazier 33.0
Baltimore IndyCar Preview

by Brian Carroccio
Thursday, August 30, 2012

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Last year's crowd
On Labor Day weekend one year ago, we witnessed a sparkling debut from an unlikely pairing, as the City of Baltimore hosted its first Izod IndyCar Series race.  Sure, there were some grumblings about noise, traffic congestion, and the inevitable, yet unforeseen costs  a start-up event.  And yes, there were some complaints about the layout of the downtown race track. 

But at the end of the day, a city with almost no racing heritage attracted more than 100,000 spectators to its beautiful Inner Harbor for the three day festival of speed.  Spectators, many of whom had never seen any race of any kind, were wowed by the incredible speeds, charmed by the accessibility of the IndyCar paddock, and enamored with the carnival atmosphere.

As for the IndyCar paddock, whatever shortcomings in racing knowledge the virgin race-goers displayed, were more than offset by the packed grandstands, and genuine passion the city showed for the event.  And for a series that has long been in search of a viable East Coast venue, all indications were they had found a wonderful, if unlikely, partner in Charm City.

Sadly, we all know, nothing is ever quite that simple in the world of IndyCar.  Issues between the city and promoter became contentious and public during the off-season.  And at one point, the event that saw such a smashing debut, seemed destined for the ash heap of Indy car racing history, which, of course, features quite a few city street races.

Luckily, the business savvy Michael Andretti, and his company, Andretti Sports Marketing, came to the rescue.  Andretti took over the event's promotion, and insured its place on the 2012 schedule.  While the event's future is by no means certain, Andretti is a creative business man, with a strong record promoting races.  And, as someone who lives in Maryland, about 50 minutes from downtown Baltimore, the promotion for the event has been evident.

Hopefully, the business savvy of Andretti combined with the success of the inaugural event, can make the Baltimore race a success for years to come.

Nevertheless, promotional and political issues aside, there is a race to run this weekend.  Sunday's 2nd Grand Prix of Baltimore will serve as round 14 of the 2012 season.  Defending race winner Will Power comes into Baltimore leading the series championship, which he can clinch with a strong showing this weekend. 

With Power no doubt the favorite to win coming into Baltimore, let's preview the Izod IndyCar Series' second run through Charm City, using a question/statement/answer format. 

1. Which drivers arrive in Baltimore with momentum?

Power, Ryan Briscoe, and Rubens Barrichello.

Power has been the fastest car at the last three road/street course races.  At Edmonton he was forced to start 17th after an engine penalty and drove to third.  At both Sonoma and Mid-Ohio, he had trouble in the pits while leading and finished second. 

Briscoe has typically qualified well this year, but dropped back in the races.  Last Sunday, at Sonoma he qualified second and parlayed Power's bad luck into his first victory in two seasons.

Formula One (F1) veteran Barrichello had his best day in Indy car at Sonoma, starting 12th and finishing fourth.  Barrichello has also been the best qualifier in the KV Racing Technology stable in 5 of the last six races. 


2. Who are some drivers that have struggled of late?

James Hinchcliffe and Justin Wilson.

Hinchliffe didn't finish worse than sixth in the season's first 5 races, and was second in the point standings after the Milwaukee race in June.  However, in the last 5 races, the affable Canadian has a mere one top 5 finish, and now sits sixth in the standings.

Since his unlikely June win at Texas, Wilson, who sits 12th in points, has not finished better than ninth.  Particularly puzzling with Wilson, is his best road/street course finish this season is ninth. 

3. Who runs well at Baltimore? 

As noted already, Baltimore does not have much of a history to draw on.

However, last year's top-5 finishers were Power, Oriol Servia, Tony Kanaan, Dario Franchitti and Scott Dixon.  Danica Patrick finished sixth, but has since left for NASCAR.  Alex Tagliani, Ryan Hunter-Reay, Vitor Meira and Graham Rahal rounded out the top 10.  Meira is no longer in the series, however, Rahal qualified second and ran competitively with Power for much of the event, before poor strategy ruined his chance at a podium finish.

4. How important is qualifying at Baltimore?

Looking at last year's results, not as vital as it is elsewhere.  Power did lead 70 of the 75 laps from pole.  However, Servia finished second after starting 14th, while Kanaan drove from the 27th grid spot to 3rd.  Patrick started 23rd, and Tagliani started 19th. 

The case of Kanaan deserves special mention.  The affable Brazilian, of course, has made a habit of engineering stirring drives from deep in the field.  If you remember the Baltimore race a year ago, "TK" qualified 11th last year, before being forced to start from the back of the grid after a stuck throttle resulted in a terrifying accident with Helio Castroneves during the morning warm-up.  During the race, Kanaan opportunistically negotiated the turn 3 hairpin, passing 10 cars, when a crash between Hunter-Reay and Ryan Briscoe bottled up 12 cars. 

While I wouldn't expect TK to get a similar break again, judging from last year a poor starting position can be overcome. 

5. So, is Baltimore more of a "strategy," event?

Maybe.

Again, we only have one race of data, but there were variable strategies last year, with Rahal being the big loser on strategy.  The caution for the Hunter-Reay/Briscoe shunt was particularly long, and Rahal running in second to Power didn't pit.  Power built a large gap over Servia, the leader of those who pitted during caution, and was able to come out ahead of Servia. 

For his part, young Rahal came out of the pits in tenth, and finished there. 

6. But haven't there been fewer cautions in IndyCar races this year?

Yes.  Over the past three races, there have been a mere two caution periods. 

Still, Baltimore is, relatively speaking, a long street course.  Power's pole time last year was 1 minute 20 seconds.  Drivers at the back of the field will be able to pit without losing a lap, and will certainly attempt to go "off sequence," early in the race. 

7. Are there any possible long shots?

Yes. If you want to call two really fast French guys long shots. 

Sebastien Bourdais has made the Firestone Fast Six in 3 of the last 4 road/street races.  He should have had a podium at Toronto, finished fourth at Mid-Ohio, and was running third at Sonoma until a strange accident.  Bourdais and Dragon Racing have gotten things together, and are due for a little luck.  I say Bourdais, makes the podium.

Also, Simon Pagenaud has been the fastest driver in the series outside the Big 3 teams (Andretti Autosport, Team Penske, Target/Chip Ganassi).  Pagenaud has made the podium three times and been very strong on the road and street circuits. 

8. Who ultimately wins?

Power.  Sorry to be boring, but Power wins the race, and clinches his first championship.

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