Power wins crash-marred Toronto Indy

Matthew Coutts
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AUTO RACING

Will Power anticipated a messy race. He expected the slippery streets of Toronto to wreak havoc on the field of 26 Indy cars.

So, while it is easier said than done, Power and his Team Penske crew made running a clean race the game plan.

Scott Dixon (right) takes to the air over the wheel of Ryan Hunter-Reay during the Honda Indy Toronto in Toronto on Sunday. Photo by The Canadian Press

TORONTO -

Will Power anticipated a messy race. He expected the slippery streets of Toronto to wreak havoc on the field of 26 Indy cars.

So, while it is easier said than done, Power and his Team Penske crew made running a clean race the game plan.

Power survived a collision-filled 2010 Honda Indy Toronto on Sunday, posting his fourth win of the IZOD IndyCar Series season in front of filled grandstands at Exhibition Place.

"The key to this race is being smart and not being taken out," Power said. "I predicted a wild race and that's what it was."

Sunday's win was Power's second at the Toronto event. He also claimed the checkered flag in 2007. The Australian finished third in 2009.

Last year's winner, Dario Franchitti, finished second, 1.2757 seconds behind Power.

The 85-lap race through Exhibition Place was littered with crashes that led to six full-course caution flags and six cars too damaged to finish.

"It was pretty physical out there," Franchitti said.

Justin Wilson started the race in the pole position and led for 17 laps before he pitted under the first caution flag.

Canadian Paul Tracy, who elected not to pit with the majority of the field, took the lead and held it for 14 laps before Franchitti passed him on a turn.

Wilson temporarily regained the lead mid-race and held it until Power moved ahead with 13 laps to go and held on through the finish. Wilson would end up spinning through a turn and dropping to seventh place.

Ryan Hunter-Reay, Tony Kanaan and Graham Rahal rounded out the top five.

Danica Patrick finished sixth, her best result on a street course this year.

"It was a really tough race today from the word 'go,' " said Hunter-Reay. "It was like a football game. Everybody was hitting each other, getting nasty for a while."

Helio Castroneves, Scott Dixon, Raphael Matos and Takuma Sato were among those knocked out of contention by crashes.

Castroneves, who was running his Team Penske ride in third place early, shattered the front of his car on the 23rd lap after rubbing the back of Vitor Meira.

Castroneves did not finish last year's race after colliding with Tracy. He has failed to finish in five of his six visits to Toronto.

"It's very sad," Castroneves said. "We could have had an awesome car and I think we could have fought for the win. (Meira) just broke very early going into the turn and I just didn't anticipate that."

Tracy ran in the middle of the pack for most of the afternoon until he spun out while attempting to pass on a hairpin turn during the 65th lap. He made up time by running clean the rest of the race and finished 13th.

Tracy was knocked out of the race last year while trying to make a similar pass at the same turn at almost the very same point in the race.

Quebec native Alex Tagliani finished 17th after starting the day in ninth position. He ran near the front of the pack for most of the day until Tomas Scheckter collided with the FAZZT Race Team driver with 10 laps to go.

The two also made contact in Toronto last year, a coincidence Scheckter called "karma" following the race.

"He said, 'Now we are equal from last year,' " Tagliani said. "His gig was giving me the payback, that's all."

Organizations: IZOD IndyCar Series, Scott Dixon

Geographic location: TORONTO, Quebec

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