Graham Rahal converts Detroit pole into fifth career win
Graham Rahal scored his fifth IndyCar Series victory in a career today at the Detroit Belle Isle circuit. A driver of the #15 Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing Honda started the race from pole and converts the best starting position into his first victory at the iconic 2.35-mile 14-turn race track.
Rahal had the perfect tactical race with two pit stops and he led for 55 of 70 laps, beating Scott Dixon (Chip Ganassi Racing) for 6.1474 seconds at the checkered flag. James Hinchcliffe (Schmidt Peterson Motorsports) completed the podium, ahead of Josef Newgarden (Team Penske).
Hinchcliffe recovered from early spin in the opening lap, which caused the first of two caution periods. The second interruption followed on lap 26 when Charlie Kimball spun and Conor Daly stopped on a track. Kimball continued the race while Daly was the only driver to retire.
The Detroit Grand Prix, the only double-header event in the season, is marking a debut for Esteban Gutierrez, who took over the #18 Dale Coyne Racing’s Honda of injured Sebastien Bourdais. Gutierrez finished the race in 19th place.
After seven races in 2017, Scott Dixon takes the championship lead ahead of Helio Castroneves. It’s interesting that Rahal is the seventh different winner in seven races. One more race at Detroit Belle Isle circuit is scheduled for Sunday.