Will Power recovered from being penalised during qualifying for the second Dual in Detroit on Sunday to claim his first Verizon IndyCar Series victory since the 2015 Grand Prix of Indy over a year ago.
The Australian had set two lap times that were good enough for pole position during the qualifying only to have them both deleted after impeding Marco Andretti, meaning the Team Penske driver was forced to rely on his third fastest time during the session and an eighth place starting spot.
But Power fought back to move into race winning contention, and then on a late restart following a caution period made a move around the outside of team-mate Simon Pagenaud to assume the track position that, once the drivers who still had to pit made their stops, enabled him to return to victory lane.
“The guys did a great job in the pits, got me out in front of the 28 (Ryan Hunter-Reay), then obviously on the restart, I thought, ‘I’ve really got to capitalize here, otherwise, we’re not going to win,’” said Power.
“It wasn’t a big risk because it was on the outside. Had I tried to go on the inside, it would have been a much bigger risk. I wasn’t willing to take that with Simon (Pagenaud) because he’s the championship leader. So, if I was going to do it, I had to do it on the outside and cleanly. There was a space and I went for it.
“But I’ve got to thank Verizon, thank the fans. It’s been a long time since the No. 12 has been in victory lane so I’m very happy for the whole Verizon crew.
“It just gives the whole crew some confidence. I think we’ve all kind of been stumbling a little bit, the whole group of us. It’s been a tough start to the year. I missed the first race and just had a few mishaps, you know, and now we’re there.”