Monday, September 5, 2016

Winners and Losers: Watkins Glen

Here are the winners, losers, and Cone of Shame winner following the 2016 IndyCar Grand Prix at Watkins Glen:

Winners

Scott Dixon
It may not have been Scott Dixon's year, but another win to add to a storied career will help Dixon launch into the next season. It is great that Dixon and Chip Ganassi got another win for Target, who will be leaving the team after Sonoma.


Josef Newgarden
Josef Newgarden picked a good time to have a good race, as the continued speculation (positive speculation) about his future swirls. Newgarden could find himself in a top-team next year, and results like the one yesterday are exactly why.


Helio Castroneves
Ditching the fuel strategy helped Helio Castroneves and Team Penske secure a third place finish. Rather than stumbling around the final laps, Helio and his team decided to pit to take a splash of fuel so he could run full-out the last couple of laps. The strategy worked and he finished third.


Conor Daly
Conor Daly continues to prove himself in key races. Another solid performance and great strategy gets the rookie a fourth place overall, the highest of any Honda.



Losers

Will Power
Will Power takes a huge hit in the championship after an unfortunate accident. Let's hope he is okay to race in Sonoma, as he was suffering from concussion like symptoms. Hope is not over, as 47 points can be made up to beat Simon Pagenaud in the championship.


James Hinchcliffe
James Hinchcliffe was about a quarter-of-a-mile away from finishing on the podium, but for a second straight week, heartbreak on the final lap. Hinch has been really good all year, but a couple of unfortunate finishes has him lower in the championship than he should be.


Tony Kanaan
A random suspension failure, or at least one that wasn't shown on the broadcast, derailed Tony Kanaan's day. Kanaan, who has many quietly good performances this year, tumbled down the standings. A third place finish in the championship isn't out of the question.


Mikhail Aleshin
In a biazarre fluke, Mikhail Aleshin's tire blew, which is something very rare for Firestone. Even though the tire blew in a very compromising spot, Aleshin made relatively light contact and was able to walk away. Bummer of a weekend for the Russian.



Cone of Shame



Charlie Kimball
People defending Charlie Kimball today saying he doesn't cause either crash with Graham Rahal or Will Power are crazy. With Rahal, he took the exit curb wrong and drifted over into Rahal, who had a huge impact with the wall. With the accident with Will Power, Kimball barely had a wing besides Power heading down the straight when Power drifted over. Kimball should have backed out, but instead he hooked Power into the wall and kept on going. Both incidents could be classified as racing incidents to some, but to me, the fact that Kimball always gets himself in these situations is a bit fishy. I think he was a problem this weekend, and someone should set him straight because this isn't the first time this year he's been a problem.



Let me know what you think!

-Matthew Hickey

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