WHAT: Iowa Corn Indy 250 Presented by DEKALB
WHERE: Iowa Speedway, Newton, IA
WHO: Defending Series Champion and Race Winner Ryan Hunter-Reay looks to repeat his performance form 2012 after winning last week’s event in Milwaukee. Points leader Helio Castroneves has never won at Iowa, but he looks to break through this weekend after a 6th place finish at Iowa last season. Marco Andretti has looked poised to take another victory several times in 2013, but has suffered some sort of unfortunate ending every time. Can the former Iowa winner finally bring everything together this weekend?
WHEN: Sunday, June 23 at 2:30pm on ABC
It’s deja vu all over again. Last year Ryan Hunter-Reay began his championship run at Milwaukee, taking the win at IndyFest 2012. RHR would go on to win at Iowa and Toronto and take firm control of the points lead going into the final third of the season. Well, RHR just won at Michigan and seems to have a dominant car going into Iowa. Ryan currently sits second in points and is poised to strike should he have another top result this weekend.
Will Power finally showed up in Milwaukee, earning his first podium finish of 2013. Iowa has pretty much been feast or famine for Power, finishing 5th in his first effort, but causing his own problems in 2011 by backing it into the Turn 2 wall, and then taking himself and E.J. Viso out in 2012, leading to Viso’s own “Angry Birds” incident. Since this has been “Bizzaro Power” season so far with Will not getting results on road/street courses and having nice runs at ovals, does Power break through into the win column this week?
I firmly believe that had the final caution not come out at Milwaukee, we would be discussing Takuma Sato’s second win of 2013. I don’t like to call it the resurgance of Foyt Enterprises, but rather they’re simply performing at the level a pro racing team should. Combine that on top of the fact that Sato can pretty much drive any car, and you have the recipe for success. Sato drives like an old school driver, so it’s no surprise he’s taken to ovals. Is this the week Sato gets his first oval victory? I’d say the chances are above average.
Speaking of feast or famine, that’s the way 2013 has gone for James Hinchcliffe. He won his first race in the opener at St. Pete. Hinch then picked up his second career win in a thriller at Sao Paulo. Other than that, Hinch’s best finishes are 9th at Texas and 5th at Milwaukee. Combine those with two 26th Place finishes, a 21st Place finish and 15th and 19th at Detroit and you understand why Hinch is 9th in points. He’s been okay at Iowa, but Hinch really needs a Top 5 this weekend to stay in the points chase.
A Lap Around Iowa Speedway (Sorta)