Make us your home page

Get the quickest, smartest news, analysis and photos from the Bucs game emailed to you shortly after the final whistle.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Hunter-Reay foils Power

Will Power slides across the track after crashing into a barrier 55 laps in and sees his chances of winning an elusive IndyCar series championship ruined for the third year in a row.

Associated Press

Will Power slides across the track after crashing into a barrier 55 laps in and sees his chances of winning an elusive IndyCar series championship ruined for the third year in a row.

FONTANA, Calif. — Ryan Hunter-Reay became the first American to win the IndyCar championship since 2006 with a nerve-racking final drive Saturday night in the season finale.

Will Power crashed out of the race 55 laps in and had to watch on television in street clothes as Hunter-Reay snatched the title away at Auto Club Speedway.

Hunter-Reay went into the finale trailing Power by 17 points, but once Power was out, he only needed to finish fifth or better. He worked his way into position to wrap it up but had to hold on over some intense final restarts. He crossed the line in fourth to win the title by three points.

Ed Carpenter won the race for his second career victory.

Power, the Australian who led by 17 points coming in, lost control of his car and spun hard into the outside wall.

It's the third consecutive year Power has gone into the finale with the title on the line and had an incident snatch away his chances.

He brushed the wall at Homestead in 2011 and lost the title by five points to Dario Franchitti. Last year, his points lead was gobbled up when another car hit him on pit road in the penultimate race, and he was involved in the 15-car accident that killed Dan Wheldon in the finale.

Power searched to find the words to describe his frustration. "I don't know what to say. It's depressing," he said as he watched Saturday's finish unfold without him. "Depressing to lose the championship again that way. Nothing I can say, mate, it's just depressing. I don't know what emotion to even feel right now."

Stenhouse wins, leads in Nationwide points

JOLIET, Ill. — Ricky Stenhouse edged past Kyle Busch and into the lead, then held on for the final 20 laps for a relatively easy victory in Saturday's Nationwide race.

Perhaps more important, he left Elliott Sadler even farther behind and took the series points lead for the first time since June.

Stenhouse, the 2011 series champion, earned his fifth victory of the year in NASCAR's No. 2 series, outlasting Busch to take the Dollar General 300 at Chicagoland Speedway. Stenhouse passed Busch on Lap 180.

"We knew if we won coming in here to Chicago that we would leave the points leader and that is what it is all about," Stenhouse said. "It is going to be tough, as you can see. Elliott was up front as well, and he runs good at every racetrack we have left as well. It is going to be a lot of fun."

Stenhouse finished 2.402 seconds ahead of Busch. Austin Dillon was third, followed by Sprint Cup regulars Brad Keselowski and Paul Menard.

Sadler, who led Stenhouse by a point coming in, finished eighth.

Trucks Record: Ryan Blaney became the youngest winner in series history, taking the caution-filled race at Iowa Speedway in Newton at 18 years, 8 months. Blaney, the son of Sprint Cup driver Dave Blaney, was making his third start in the series. Blaney held off Ty Dillon after a late restart on the 0.875-mile track. Dillon, 20, took the points lead from Timothy Peters, who was 19th to drop eight points back.

PENSKE Considers ALLMENDINGER: Roger Penske said he would consider rehiring AJ Allmendinger, the suspended NASCAR driver who was at the IndyCar season finale as his guest. Allmendinger failed a NASCAR drug test in July and was released by Penske Racing when his backup "B" sample also tested positive. He's participating in NASCAR's "Road to Recovery" program, and Penske said he felt the driver has been too reclusive.

AMERICAN LE MANS: Klaus Graf and Lucas Lohr teamed to win at Virginia International Raceway, running 135 laps in the four-hour race in a Honda ARX-03a to edge Chris Dyson and Guy Smith.

NHRA: Shawn Langdon earned the No. 1 qualifying position in Top Fuel at the O'Reilly Auto Parts Nationals, the first event in the Countdown to the Championship playoffs, in Concord, N.C. Langdon had a run of 3.807 seconds at 324.12 mph. Tim Wilkerson topped the Funny Car field, Vincent Nobile led Pro Stock and Andrew Hines was No. 1 in Pro Stock Motorcycle headed into today's eliminations.

Hunter-Reay foils Power 09/15/12 [Last modified: Sunday, September 16, 2012 12:35am]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Bryan Harper's path to the majors, where his brother is a star, has been bumpy

    The Heater

    He has thrown 215 professional innings over 168 minor-league outings, and at various points the kid from Las Vegas has called Viera and Hagerstown, Md., and Harrisburg, Pa. and Syracuse, N.Y., and even Arlington, Va. home. During that summer he lived in the D.C. suburbs, he would rise some mornings with his brother in …

  2. Blake Snell steps up, but Rays lose to Orioles anyway (w/video)

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — Blake Snell stepped up when he had to Monday and delivered an impressive career-high seven-plus innings for the Rays. That it wasn't enough in what ended up a 5-0 loss to the Orioles that was their season-high fifth straight is symptomatic of the mess they are in right now.

    Tim Beckham stands hands on hips after being doubled off first.
  3. Rays vs. Orioles, 7:10 p.m. Tuesday, Tropicana Field

    The Heater

    Tonight: vs. Orioles

    7:10, Tropicana Field

    TV/radio: Fox Sports Sun; 620-AM, 680-AM (Spanish)

  4. Rays journal: Sergio Romo excited for fresh start in AL

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — RHP Sergio Romo was about to play catch with LHP Adam Kolarek before Monday's batting practice when he paused.

    RAMOS EXITS: Rays catcher Wilson Ramos clutches his head after being beaned by Ruben Tejada’s broken bat in the fifth inning. Ramos leaves the game and receives six staples to close a laceration on his head.
  5. Marc Topkin's takeaways from Monday's Rays-Orioles game

    The Heater

    LHP Blake Snell stepped up when the Rays needed him to — and perhaps when he had to to keep his job — working a season-high seven plus innings. And it wasn't only that he got deep into the game, but how he did so, using his fastball to pound the strike zone.