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Toronto Race 2 Update: Penske vs. Ganassi battle unfolding

Jul 20, 2014, 4:54 PM EDT

On a damp Honda Indy Toronto street course, Helio Castroneves, Will Power, and Tony Kanaan are leading the pack at the halfway mark of Race 2.

The second race began with a standing start that had Justin Wilson stall but otherwise come off without incident. However in Turn 3, Race 1 podium finisher Kanaan went into the tires to bring out a quick caution.

The field went back to green at Lap 4, but two laps later, Simon Pagenaud suddenly appeared to lose power on his No. 77 machine.

He got to the pits and his crew quickly went to work on the car; he has since returned to action but at multiple laps off the pace.

On Lap 8, Juan Pablo Montoya went underneath Ryan Hunter-Reay in Turn 1 to pick up third place before a shower made its way over the 1.75-mile street circuit.

A wet track appeared to cause Montoya to go into the tire barriers at Turn 8. James Hinchcliffe then spun out and clipped Montoya as Race 1 winner Sebastien Bourdais went off-course to the outside.

But things took a scary turn when rookie Mikhail Aleshin slid into the back of Montoya, jacking up the Colombian’s car on top of his own.

Thankfully, Aleshin radioed his Schmidt Peterson Motorsports team to let them know he was OK; he later showed NBCSN his helmet, which gained multiple tire marks from the impact.

“It was not nice at all, because I was sitting under the car and it was getting so hot that I couldn’t breathe at all,” the Russian explained on pit road.

Josef Newgarden and Bourdais chose to stay out on their slick tires and assumed first and second respectively for the restart at Lap 20.

But both of them were quickly swallowed up by their pursuers and just after Bourdais ducked in for wet tires on Lap 22, Newgarden spun after hitting the curbs at Turn 10.

Luckily for the American, he was near the entrance to pit road. After traffic went by, he moved forward, spun again to get pointed forward, and entered the pits for his own set of wet tires.

A caution for debris bunched up the field again for a restart at Lap 28. Castroneves and Power, the top two drivers in the Verizon IndyCar Series championship, engaged in a battle for the lead.

That fight allowed Kanaan – who had pitted shortly after going into the tires on Lap 1 – to draw close to them as the race crossed the halfway mark. Then on Lap 33, Luca Filippi found the tires at Turn 8 to bring out another caution, this one sending the race into a timed setting with little more than half an hour to go.

  1. Jeff - Jul 20, 2014 at 7:46 PM

    I bet the IndyCar guys were sad when Penkse and Ganassi didn’t finish 1,2,3,4.

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