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2017 Point Standings
After Sonoma
Rank Driver Points

1 Josef Newgarden 642
2 Simon Pagenaud 629
3 Scott Dixon 621
4 Helio Castroneves 598
5 Will Power 562
6 Graham Rahal 522
7 Alexander Rossi 494
8 Takuma Sato 441
9 Ryan Hunter-Reay 421
10 Tony Kanaan 403
11 Max Chilton 396
12 Marco Andretti 388
13 James Hinchcliffe 376
14 Ed Jones 354
15 JR Hildebrand 347
16 Carlos Munoz 328
17 Charlie Kimball 327
18 Conor Daly 305
19 Mikhail Aleshin 237
20 Spencer Pigot 218
21 Sebastien Bourdais 214
22 Ed Carpenter 169
23 Gabby Chaves 98
24 Juan Pablo Montoya 93
25 Esteban Gutierrez 91
26 Sebastian Saavedra 80
27 Oriol Servia 61
28 Jack Harvey 57
29 Fernando Alonso 47
30 Pippa Mann 32
31 Zachary Claman DeMelo 26
32 Jay Howard 24
33 Zach Veach 23
34 Sage Karam 23
35 James Davison 21
36 Tristan Vautier 15
37 Buddy Lazier 14

Rookie of Year Standings
1. Ed Jones 354
2. Esteban Gutierrez 91
3. Jack Harvey 57
4. Fernando Alonso 47
5. Zach Veach 23

Manufacturer Standings
1. Chevy 1489
2. Honda 1326

Texas underscores what is right with IndyCar

by Tim Wohlford
Friday, June 7, 2013

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Justin Wilson won last year for Dale Coyne
Ah yes, it’s time for Texas again.  And once again, Texas is a case study in all that is good in IndyCar – and all that can go wrong.

Bluntly stated, I came to Texas last year fully prepared to write about bad news.  After all, it was the first high-banked super speedway race with the new Dallara chassis, and the first high-banked track race after the Vegas event the previous fall had taken the life of Dan Wheldon. 

And as CART fans remember, in 2001 drivers suffered vertigo due to the speed of the cars – which was, arguably, the beginning of the end for that series.

However, a strange thing happened – it was one of the best IndyCar races ever.  The cars were competitive without racing in the dreaded pack.  The better drivers went to the lead, although a few bemoaned having to race there at all. 

First Scott Dixon, then Graham Rahal, dominated before hitting the wall, handing the victory to a surprised Justin Wilson in front of a stunned crowd.

So what happened?  In a word, IndyCar changed the aero formula, and got it right.  Working with Firestone and the engine manufacturers, IndyCar tries to provide a safe, entertaining and cost-effective race.  (And yes, this means that I believe that IndyCar blew it for the 2011 Vegas race.) 

Some Indy drivers, as well as some AutoRacing1 editors, lobbied for lower down force on the big ovals for years.  This effectively turns them into mechanical grip cars instead of down force grip cars, and at the Texas race last year, they gave it a try.  And, it worked, as it did for California later in the season. 

“The cars are safer than they used to be” due to a lack of pack racing comment Helio Castroneves this morning.

So, fast forward to this year.  Although IndyCar is keeping last year’s spec for the high-banked races, IndyCar is nothing if it isn’t a place where all old ideas seem to be dragged out of storage once in a while.  Now we’re hearing new IndyCar management talking once again about “aero kits” for, well, sometime in the future. 

And even worse yet, talk of “new track records.”  The concerns are obvious – will IndyCar be able to strike a balance between safety, cost and “the good show” if it has multiple aero configurations?

And if IndyCar tries for a “new track record” at Texas... well, it’s just not possible.

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