Montoya triumphs in record-setting Pocono 500

Montoya triumphs in record-setting Pocono 500

7 July 2014 – Team Penske's Juan Pablo Montoya crossed the finish line on Sunday afternoon and broke several streaks in the process. For one, it had been over 13 years since the Colombian last won an IndyCar event, but after a record-setting pace at the second leg of IndyCar's Triple Crown, the 38-year-old Montoya also became the first polesitter to win a Verizon IndyCar Series race this year.

The eighth winner in eleven events, Montoya was also the eighth polesitter this season after breaking track records in qualifying for single-lap speed and two-lap average speed (at over 223mph). It was only appropriate that this race – the Pocono IndyCar 500 – would also go down as the fastest 500-mile race in IndyCar history (beating Jimmy Vasser's 197.995mph winning pace twelve years ago at California Speedway), being the only event of such a length to have an average speed above 200mph. Distance aside, though, this would still go down as the third-fastest IndyCar race ever.

This speed was achieved in part due to a single caution period interrupting the proceedings, courtesy of a brush with the wall by Graham Rahal on lap 159. This, too, was a record for the longest opening green flag stretch of any 500-mile IndyCar race. The caution lasted for six laps before staying green until the end.

Penske teammate Helio Castroneves finished 2.3s behind Montoya, and because of the double points awarded in the event, he moves into a tie for the lead in the championship standings with Will Power. Power, another Penske driver, ran a strong race until it all unraveled in the final few laps.

After leading 69 laps, he made contact with Montoya on the 167th lap, damaging the Colombian's wing and losing momentum in the process. Just four laps later, as Castroneves was charging his way toward the lead, Power was penalized for blocking the Brazilian, earning the Aussie a drive-through penalty. Between this and a late fuel stop on lap 189, he would finish P10.

Fuel would also prove to be an issue for the 2013 Indianapolis 500 winner Tony Kanaan. The Chip Ganassi driver led a total of 78 laps on the evening – more than anyone else – but an unfortunate fuel strategy meant that his car needed one more splash of petrol to make it to the end. Staying out until the last possible moment, Kanaan was forced to pit with just three laps remaining, thus giving the lead to Montoya. The Brazilian would also reach a milestone, though, leading laps for the 100th race in his long career.  He would still manage to come home in P11.

Rookie Carlos Munoz, always a strong contender at 500-mile events, finished on the final step of the podium ahead of Ryan Briscoe and Scott Dixon, who won the last IndyCar event at Pocono in 2013.

Indianapolis 500 winner Ryan Hunter-Reay was in the hunt for the Triple Crown of 500-mile races, but his car did not complete 30 laps before he was forced to retire temporarily with suspension problems. After repairs, he would go on to complete 181 laps, good enough for P18.

Simon Pagenaud, Mikhail Aleshin, Josef Newgarden, Marco Andretti and Power rounded out the top 10.

For Montoya, though, the win served to justify his return to North America's premier open wheel series. After spending time in Formula 1 and NASCAR, the Colombian was signed by Roger Penske before the 2014 season following the ending of his contract with NASCAR's Earnhardt Ganassi Racing.

Since his return, increasingly strong finishes culminated Sunday in his 12th IndyCar victory, albeit 13 years after his last one. That makes him only the third driver since 1909 to go greater than 10 years between wins. It also makes him the only current driver to have won three separate 500-mile races.

related

Comments

Latest News
Full
Compact

  1. Monday 2 March 2015

  2. Arrivabene urges concentration at Ferrari 15:42

    Arrivabene urges concentration at Ferrari

    Ferrari Team Principal Maurizio Arrivabene has emphasised that the Italian outfit must remain disciplined as it prepares for...

    F1
  3. Renault 'quietly confident' ahead of Australia 14:14

    Renault 'quietly confident' ahead of Australia

    Renault Managing Director Cyril Abiteboul says the French power unit supplier is 'quietly confident' ahead of the opening...

    F1
  4. FIA confirms clampdown on helmet changes 13:08

    FIA confirms clampdown on helmet changes

    Formula 1 drivers will be restricted to just one helmet design per season after a proposals put forward by figures inside...

    F1
  5. Final Barcelona pre-season test in numbers 11:01

    Final Barcelona pre-season test in numbers

    The final pre-season test at Barcelona saw Nico Rosberg and Mercedes top the timesheets, and Sauber lead the mileage stakes....

    F1
  6. Vettel expecting close fight behind Mercedes 10:52

    Vettel expecting close fight behind Mercedes

    Sebastian Vettel says he expects a close fight between Williams, Red Bull and his Ferrari team this year - albeit some way...

    F1
  7. Mick Schumacher to race in German Formula 4 10:45

    Mick Schumacher to race in German Formula 4

    Mick Schumacher, son of seven-time Formula 1 World Champion Michael, will make his car racing debut in German ADAC Formula 4...

    Misc
  8. Pons Racing parts company with Tunjo 10:33

    Pons Racing parts company with Tunjo

    Formula Renault 3.5 outfit Pons Racing has confirmed that it has parted company with Colombian youngster Óscar...

    FR 3.5
  9. 09:57

    Photos: Red Bull presents RB11 livery

    F1
  10. Red Bull reveals final RB11 livery 09:32

    Red Bull reveals final RB11 livery

    Red Bull has revealed the RB11 in its final race colours, ahead of the squad's planned filming day at the Circuit de...

    F1
  11. Tost happy with Toro Rosso's preparation 08:38

    Tost happy with Toro Rosso's preparation

    Toro Rosso Team Principal Franz Tost says he is encouraged by the progress the squad has made across its pre-season testing...

    F1
  12. Chilton joins Nissan's LMP1 project 08:15

    Chilton joins Nissan's LMP1 project

    Former Formula 1 driver Max Chilton has confirmed that he will make the switch to the World Endurance Championship this year...

    LM
  13. Video of the Day: Chilton links up with Nissan 08:12

    Video of the Day: Chilton links up with Nissan

    Former Marussia racer Max Chilton and Nissan GT Academy mentor Alex Buncombe discuss their roles with Nissan ahead of the...

    LM
  14. Sunday 1 March 2015

  15. 19:26

    Photos: Barcelona pre-season testing – Day 4

    F1
  16. Pérez upbeat after first experience of VJM08 19:12

    Pérez upbeat after first experience of VJM08

    Sergio Pérez expressed his optimism after he received his first taste of Force India's VJM08 at the Circuit de...

    F1
  17. McLaren prepared for tricky start to 2015 18:57

    McLaren prepared for tricky start to 2015

    McLaren Racing Director Eric Boullier says the squad is prepared for a tricky start to its 2015 campaign after pre-season...

    F1
  18. Lotus: Brake issue caused Maldonado crash 18:33

    Lotus: Brake issue caused Maldonado crash

    Lotus has confirmed that a brake problem caused Pastor Maldonado's crash on the final day of pre-season testing in...

    F1
  19. Rosberg pleased with Mercedes' pre-season 18:13

    Rosberg pleased with Mercedes' pre-season

    Nico Rosberg declared himself happy with Mercedes' pre-season preparations, after topping the combined times at the final...

    F1
  20. 17:08

    Barcelona pre-season testing: Day 4 results

    F1
  21. Bottas tops final day of pre-season testing 17:03

    Bottas tops final day of pre-season testing

    Williams driver Valtteri Bottas set the fastest time as the third and final pre-season test reached its conclusion at the...

    F1
  22. Hamilton explains decision to keep #44 13:06

    Hamilton explains decision to keep #44

    World Champion Lewis Hamilton says he chose to keep #44 as his car number for the upcoming season as it "means more to me"...

    F1
  23. 07:51

    Follow Barcelona pre-season testing live!

    F1
  24. Magnussen wanted Le Mans drive with father 07:46

    Magnussen wanted Le Mans drive with father

    McLaren test and reserve driver Kevin Magnussen says he enquired over the possibility of racing alongside father Jan for...

    F1
  25. Barcelona pre-season testing: Day 4 line-up 06:47

    Barcelona pre-season testing: Day 4 line-up

    The final pre-season test at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya concludes on Sunday and, to keep you up to date with who is...

    F1
  26. Video of the Day: Official Formula E anthem 05:24

    Video of the Day: Official Formula E anthem

    Spanish musician and record producer Nacho Cano had released an official anthem for Formula E.

    FE
  27. Saturday 28 February 2015

  28. 21:12

    Photos: Barcelona pre-season testing – Day 3

    F1
  29. First Ferrari race simulation pleases Allison 20:04

    First Ferrari race simulation pleases Allison

    Ferrari Technical Director James Allison expressed his happiness after the squad was able to conduct its first race...

    F1
  30. Hamilton: Predicting main rivals is 'irrelevant' 19:34

    Hamilton: Predicting main rivals is 'irrelevant'

    Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton says it is "irrelevant" to make predictions over who the outfit's main rivals will be in...

    F1
  31. Ricciardo content with Red Bull progress 19:05

    Ricciardo content with Red Bull progress

    Daniel Ricciardo played down his lowly position on the timesheets during the penultimate day of pre-season testing at the...

    F1
  32. Magnussen feels 'very good base' with MP4-30 18:47

    Magnussen feels 'very good base' with MP4-30

    McLaren tester Kevin Magnussen says the team's Honda-powered MP4-30 feels better in many areas compared to its...

    F1
  33. 17:05

    Barcelona pre-season testing: Day 3 results

    F1
  34. Hamilton keeps Mercedes on top in Barcelona 17:04

    Hamilton keeps Mercedes on top in Barcelona

    Lewis Hamilton ensured that Mercedes remained at the top of the times on the penultimate day of the final pre-season test at...

    F1
  35. Symonds supportive of Manor revival 14:28

    Symonds supportive of Manor revival

    Williams' Chief Technical Officer Pat Symonds says it will be a boost for Formula 1 if Manor can make it to the grid for the...

    F1
  36. Booth: Manor 'very close' to making first race 10:25

    Booth: Manor 'very close' to making first race

    John Booth says Manor Marussia is "very close" to making it to the season-opening Australian Grand Prix, after the team was...

    F1
  37. Video: Vergne drives Ferrari Formula 1 car 08:47

    Video: Vergne drives Ferrari Formula 1 car

    Jean-Éric Vergne completed his first laps in a Ferrari F1 car during a demo in Adelaide on Saturday.

    F1
  38. Vergne completes Ferrari demo in Adelaide 08:11

    Vergne completes Ferrari demo in Adelaide

    Jean-Éric Vergne got behind the wheel of a Ferrari Formula 1 car for the first time on Saturday when he completed a...

    F1
  39. 07:52

    Follow Barcelona pre-season testing live!

    F1
  40. Barcelona pre-season testing: Day 3 line-up 06:43

    Barcelona pre-season testing: Day 3 line-up

    The final pre-season test at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya continues on Saturday and, to keep you up to date with who...

    F1
  41. FIA wants new cameras for crash investigations 06:28

    FIA wants new cameras for crash investigations

    New high speed cameras could be fitted to Formula 1 cars from 2016 in a bid to improve investigations into...

    F1
  42. Video of the Day: Getting ready for pre-season 05:16

    Video of the Day: Getting ready for pre-season

    Mercedes documents the final push to getting the F1 W06 Hybrid ready for pre-season testing.

    F1
  43. Friday 27 February 2015

  44. 21:02

    Photos: Barcelona pre-season testing – Day 2

    F1
more news