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Mar 25, 2013



Drama punctuated the Honda Indy Grand Prix of St. Petersburg, the 2013 IZOD IndyCar Series season opener.

The reigning IZOD IndyCar Series champion opened the season in 18th place. The Verizon P1 Award winner and 2012 championship runner-up wound up 16th. The four-time series title-holder exited early in the race because of contact.

In the end, James Hinchcliffe scored his first win on the 1.8-mile temporary street circuit by holding off Helio Castroneves over the final 26 laps.

The 26-year-old Canadian overtook Castroneves in Turn 1 of a Lap 85 restart, conserved fuel in the No. 27 Chevrolet for Andretti Autosport and held on for a 1.0982-second victory.

He's the first Canadian to win an Indy car race since Paul Tracy in 2007 at Cleveland and gave Michael Andretti his 44th Indy car victory (two more than he had as a driver).

Castroneves, the 2012 race winner, was second and Marco Andretti overtook Simona de Silvestro in Turn 1 of the final lap to earn third place (his best road/street course finish since Toronto in 2011).

Will Power, who earned his 30th Indy car pole, led 26 laps before Castroneves made an inside move on a restart and it went downhill from there. Under caution, the No. 4 National Guard Panther Racing car driven by JR Hildebrand sprung over the right side of Power's No. 12 Verizon Team Penske car, causing a flat rear tire and bent mirror. The team spent two pit stops to repair and check for damage. Then, while running 12th, the rear end of Power's car caught the Turn 4 tire barrier. He finished 16th.

Ryan Hunter-Reay, who started and finished third at St. Pete last March on his journey to the series title, encountered issues on an early pit stop and was not in contention.


Results Sunday of the Honda Grand Prix of St Petersburg IZOD IndyCar Series event on the 1.8-mile St Petersburg

Street Circuit, with order of finish, starting position in parentheses, driver, chassis-engine, laps completed and

reason out (if any):

1. (4) James Hinchcliffe, Dallara-Chevrolet, 110, Running

2. (5) Helio Castroneves, Dallara-Chevrolet, 110, Running

3. (7) Marco Andretti, Dallara-Chevrolet, 110, Running

4. (11) Tony Kanaan, Dallara-Chevrolet, 110, Running

5. (20) Scott Dixon, Dallara-Honda, 110, Running

6. (3) Simona de Silvestro, Dallara-Chevrolet, 110, Running

7. (22) EJ Viso, Dallara-Chevrolet, 110, Running

8. (2) Takuma Sato, Dallara-Honda, 110, Running

9. (13) Justin Wilson, Dallara-Honda, 110, Running

10. (17) Alex Tagliani, Dallara-Honda, 110, Running

11. (21) Sebastien Bourdais, Dallara-Chevrolet, 110, Running

12. (14) Charlie Kimball, Dallara-Honda, 110, Running

13. (15) Graham Rahal, Dallara-Honda, 110, Running

14. (23) Ed Carpenter, Dallara-Chevrolet, 110, Running

15. (18) James Jakes, Dallara-Honda, 110, Running

16. (1) Will Power, Dallara-Chevrolet, 107, Running

17. (12) Oriol Servia, Dallara-Chevrolet, 104, Running

18. (8) Ryan Hunter-Reay, Dallara-Chevrolet, 79, Mechanical         

19. (24) JR Hildebrand, Dallara-Chevrolet, 78, Contact

20. (9) Sebastian Saavedra, Dallara-Chevrolet, 72, Contact                                                                                                                                                      

21. (6) Tristan Vautier, Dallara-Honda, 69, Mechanical

22. (25) Ana Beatriz, Dallara-Honda, 55, Mechanical

23. (16) Josef Newgarden, Dallara-Honda, 50, Mechanical  

24. (19) Simon Pagenaud, Dallara-Honda, 26, Mechanical                                                                                                  

25. (10) Dario Franchitti, Dallara-Honda, 18, Contact           


Race Statistics

Winners average speed:   83.539

Time of Race: 02:22:12.5502

Margin of victory: 1.0982

Cautions: 4 for 29 laps

Lead changes: 4 among 4 drivers

Lap Leaders:

Power 1 - 26

Castroneves 27 - 45

Servia 46 - 61

Castroneves 62 - 84

Hinchcliffe 85 - 110


Point Standings: Hinchcliffe 51, Castroneves 43, Andretti 35, Kanaan 32, Dixon 30, de Silvestro 28, Viso 26, Sato, 24,

Wilson 22, Tagliani 20


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