The streets of Toronto’s Exhibition Place have been the home to open-wheel racing in Canada since 1986. For the second time, the Izod IndyCar Series came to town to run the downtown streets. Twenty-six cars including Canadians Paul Tracy and Alex Tagliani made up the field for a race that turned into a demolition derby.
12:48 PM – Justin Wilson will start on the pole for today’s Toronto Indy. IICS points leader Will Power starts on the outside of the front row.
12:49 PM – Quebec’s Alex Tagliani will start 9th while The Thrill from West Hill Paul Tracy starts 24th of 26 starters.
[SM: All the KV cars had trouble finding grip during the weekend but Paul also had a car problem that was fixed in time for morning practise.]
12:53 PM – Defending IndyCar champ Dario Franchitti will start 5th. Some controversy over that due to an engine change made w/o informing officials.
[SM: Officials found out by watching the race broadcast. Good work there.]
12:59 PM – Fun fact: Paul Tracy’s first IndyCar win on the streets of Toronto came 17 years ago today in 1993.
1:01 PM – Green flag! Clean through Lap 1. Wilson leads but Power falls back to about 6th
1:04 PM – After three laps, Wilson is under pressure from Castroneves for P1. Tagliani hounding Kanaan for 7th. Tracy up to 18th.
1:08 PM – Milka Duno has been told to pick up the pace on her 5th lap. Her last lap was over 6 second off the leader’s pace on a 61 sec lap.
[SM: She was running 1:07 and 1:08 to Wilson’s 1:01]
1:11 PM – Lap 10: Milka Duno told to pit by race control. The team is checking under the engine cover for problems. Check the cockpit boys.
[SM: She actually only completed 8 laps. And her fastest time in practise (no qualifying time) would be good for 2nd last on the Indy Lights grid.]
1:17 PM – Caution on Lap 17. Takuma Sato collides with Moraes & brakes right-front suspension heading into turn 3.
[SM: Moraes squeezed Sato into the wall. Teammates racing a bit too hard.]
1:19 PM – Pit stops coming en masse under yellow. Got to think Wilson will be at a disadvantage against Penske & Ganassi teams.
1:22 PM – After pit stops: Castroneves, Franchitti, Wilson, Power, Hunter-Reay. Tracy & Meira stay out & will restart 1-2.
1:26 PM – Restart on Lap 22 & Caution! Castroneves runs over the back of Meira heading to Turn 3. Very similar to the Sato accident.
1:29 PM – On replay, it looks like Helio just stayed in the draft too long and pulled out too late. He’s okay but his car is out.
[SM: Makes it very similar to Mark Webber’s crash in the F1 European GP.]
1:35 PM – Back to green on Lap 27. Back to yellow immediately again. Alex Lloyd gets into it in Turn 1 with Romancini.
1:36 PM – Long delay on throwing the yellow. Franchitti & Power passed Meira for 2nd long after the crash but before the yellow was thrown.
[SM: Meira was hosed on the caution call but the officials had to give the boys some time to race.]
1:39 PM – Promo for Shaq Vs. on ABC. It’s stopped being “The Ultimate in Cross-Training” and is now shameless self-promotion.
[SM: This year’s competitors include Rachel Ray and Justin Bieber. God help us.]
1:45 PM – Restart on Lap 32. Franchitti gets by PT in T3 for P1. Caution back out for Romancini spun by Moraes in T3.
1:46 PM – We’ve run into a case of cautions breeding more cautions. Four straight yellows means nobody can stretch out except refund lines.
1:48 PM – Paul Tracy pits under yellow from 2nd. Should only have to make 1 more stop. Everyone else may make 2 based on fuel milage.
[SM: Turns out all those caution laps put everyone on essentially the same strategy.]
1:50 PM – Back to green on Lap 36. Tagliani running 9th while PT is in 18th.
1:53 PM – Dixon gets by Kanaan for 5th after TK is warned by race control to not take a defensive line into Turn 3.
[SM: Remember, Tony, the only Andretti Autosport cars allowed to defend their positions are Danica and Marco.]
1:57 PM – Franchitti and Power running within a half-second, battling for the lead. Franchitti leads as the race crosses the halfway mark.
2:06 PM – Matos made a pitstop on Lap 50. Tagliani, Briscoe & Viso in on Lap 51. Fuel window around 35 laps.
2:08 PM – Pit stops coming in quick succession. Franchitti, Power, Wilson running 1/2/3 haven’t stopped.
2:09 PM – Franchitti pits on Lap 54. Correction on fuel window. It’s 28 to 32 laps.
2:11 PM – After pit stops, Wilson leapfrogs everyone to take the lead. Power in 2nd ahead of Franchitti.
2:12 PM – Tracy pits on Lap 56 after Baguette finds the tires in T3. Trying not to get caught out by a yellow that didn’t come.
[SM: PT’s first stop under yellow put him to the back. He needed to make that stop then to have a chance.]
2:14 PM – Here’s your Top 10 after 59 of 85 laps: Wilson, Power, Franchitti, Dixon, Hunter-Reay, Kanaan, Briscoe, Rahal, Andretti, Patrick
2:16 PM – Crash! Briscoe into the wall on the entry into T3.
2:17 PM – Briscoe was bumped from behind by Rahal into T3. Briscoe took a defensive line and was nosed into the wall as a result.
2:18 PM – After that, both Canadians move up. Tagliani is running 11th while Tracy runs 15th.
2:21 PM – Caution! Viso and Matos collide in T5. Wilson’s 5 second lead erased. Tracy stopped on track at T3.
2:24 PM – Tagliani tried to pass Matos in T5 but spun him. Viso crashed in aftermath. PT outbroke himself into T3 & stopped at the tires.
[SM: Note to Scott Goodyear: Outbraking oneself does not mean losing control. This is why you never won a title. You never tried to push beyond the limit to see where it was.]
2:26 PM – Top Ten after 68 Laps: Wilson, Power, Franchitti, Dixon, Hunter-Reay, Kanaan, Rahal, Patrick, Andretti, Tagliani. PT 16th, -1 lap
2:31 PM – Back to green with only 14 laps to go. Power passes Wilson heading into T1. Crash in T3 Dixon wrecked by Hunter-Reay.
2:32 PM – Wilson spins in Turn 8. Power & Franchitti storming away from field.
2:34 PM – Crash in Turn 1. Tagliani and Scheckter in the tires. This one causes a full-course caution.
[SM: Have to give the officials credit here. NASCAR would have thrown the yellow after Dixon crashed. At least we got a lap of racing in this time.]
2:35 PM – Replay of Wilson’s spin shows he lost it under braking in T8. Scheckter came from miles back & wrecked Tag in T1.
[SM: Scott, Scheckter’s move here would be a mistake.]
2:38 PM – Top 10 with 9 Laps left: Power, Franchitti, Hunter-Reay, Kanaan, Rahal, Patrick, Andretti, De Silvestro, Meira, Wheldon
2:42 PM – 6 to go: Wilson moving through the field. Up to 8th but still won’t contend for the win.
2:46 PM – White flag. One lap to go. Will Power leads by 1.5 seconds.
2:47 PM – Checkered flag! Will Power wins the Toronto Indy for his 4th win of the season.
2:48 PM – Unofficial Top 10: Power, Franchitti, Hunter-Reay, Kanaan, Rahal, Patrick, Wilson, Andretti, De Silvestro, Wheldon
[SM: A really strange top 10 in this one. A lot of attrition meant some irregulars in the top 10. Especially Danica. But it’s got to be her best road course finish of 2010 after her best NASCAR finish last week.]
2:50 PM – Meira finished 11th & Mutoh in 12th round out cars on the lead lap. Tracy finished 13th. Tagliani finished 17th.
2:54 PM – Finally showed the replay of the pass for the win. Wilson spun his tires and Power pounced, passing by start-finish.
[SM: Not sure I like where the pass went down but it would have happened eventually so I’m not particularly concerned with this one.]
Tweets From Drivers
Ryan Hunter-Reay (@RyanHunterReay) – Crazy day! It was really tough to hang on out there today. All considering, we’re pretty happy to be leaving Toronto with a podium finish.
Alex Lloyd (@alex_lloyd) – The fact that I am writing a tweet when I should be racing my car says one of 2 things. Either I have a very advanced steering wheel with Twitter technology or it has been a very bad weekend! Looks like something broke sending me into the wall hard. Need to take a look to figure out what went wrong! Nothing noticeably broken so we are trying to figure out how I got turned around.
Graham Rahal (@GrahamRahal) – What a day! Great run for the QuickTrim boys. Now I can relax knowing we had a great result. Not bad for a part timer
Ryan Briscoe (@RyanBriscoe6) – I wish Rahal could have tried making a clean move instead of punting me! Guess he doesn’t care about championships being a part-timer..
Tomas Scheckter (@tomasscheckter) – had a lot of fun out there today. pity we got together with tag was not my intention at all on other hand karmas a bitch. i saw tag took out matos and viso right infront of me. he took me out last year. u carry on like for too long its gonna come back your way.
Alex Tagliani (@tagliani) – Just wondering one thing, why did everyone call him Thomas Wrecker
Paul Tracy (@paultracy3) – Felt good today to lead for Some laps . Strategy did not play out our way , but we were running fast laps at the end . That was good. We need to get the car right for qualifying and in the race we will be fine . On to next week
- #12 Will Power
- #10 Dario Franchitti
- #37 Ryan Hunter-Reay
- #11 Tony Kanaan
- #02 Graham Rahal
- #7 Danica Patrick
- #22 Justin Wilson
- #26 Marco Andretti
- #78 Simona De Silvestro
- #4 Dan Wheldon
- #14 Vitor Meira
- #06 Hideki Mutoh
- #15 Paul Tracy (-1 lap)
- #32 Mario Moraes (-1 lap)
- #24 Tomas Scheckter (-1 lap)
- #36 Bertrand Baguette (-1 lap)
- #77 Alex Tagliani (-1 lap)
- #6 Ryan Briscoe (-2 laps)
- #8 E.J. Viso (-3 laps)
- #9 Scott Dixon (DNF, Contact)
- #2 Raphael Matos (DNF, Contact)
- #34 Mario Romancini (DNF, Contact)
- #19 Alex Lloyd (DNF, Contact)
- #3 Helio Castroneves (DNF, Contact)
- #5 Takuma Sato (DNF, Contact)
- #18 Milka Duno (DNF, Parked – Too Slow)