Power on alternate strategy in Detroit: “We’re too far back to try to play conservative”

Spread the love

Photo credit: Indycar.com/Joe Skibinski

A methodical approach from defending series champion Will Power nearly paid off at the end of the Detroit Grand Prix, as he took advantage of an alternate tyre strategy at the start to move up from seventh starting position to finish second.

He was already up to second after the first pit stops, and on the alternate tire for his second stint briefly took the lead on a restart on lap 56, leading nine laps before Palou took the lead back.

“Starting on the blacks, everything played out as we thought. I guess we were worried when the yellow came. Everyone packs up. But then we got a yellow again, so that kind of helped us. We had 10 laps to push hard. I got Palou on the restart. Then they went off, he got me back.”

He would bide his time, and with further yellows late in the race he had another chance on the restart with 10 laps to go. Trying for Palou at the hairpin, however, Power made contact with Scott Dixon; both cars continued, and while Power got around Dixon at the next corner, Alexander Rossi had worked around both of them for second. One more yellow came out with eight to go, but it was too much distance for Power to pull off the win.

“I think my one chance was when Dixon got into me a little bit, I was trying to switch back and get a run, get him into four. Apart from that, yeah, the next restart was in third so I didn’t have another shot at him.”

As Palou took off on the final restart with five to go, Power was able to get around Rossi at turn four but couldn’t make up any more ground for the win.

“You’re never looking back on seconds as a bad day. Although the guy I was needing to close points to was the guy that won. We limited the damage.”

The limited damage meant that Power moved up to eighth in points, even though his gap to Palou opened up further. Power acknowledged that he’s going to have to really fight to defend his championship.

“We’re too far back to try to play conservative. We’ve got to attack every chance. That’s why I’m trying to go as hard as I can right now.”