Will Power has claimed three wins on the trot

Will Power has claimed his third win of the 2012 season in succession – and his third win on the streets of São Paulo – by winning the Itaipava São Paulo Indy 300, the fourth round of the championship season.

Starting from pole position, the Australian kept his nose clean in an event-filled race punctuated by several safety car periods as his rivals came to grief on the tough street circuit.

But his victory wasn’t as assured as it looked, with each field compression bringing more pressure to maintain his advantage at the front of the field. With the final caution coming just a handful of laps before the finish of the 75-lap race, he had a tough fight on his hands to keep Ryan Hunter-Reay behind him – the pair crossed the line less than a second apart.

Takuma Sato came through to claim a well-earned points’ finish in his Rahal Letterman Lanigan entry, passing Dario Franchitti to claim the final podium spot after the last safety car period.

Sato’s drive was simply stellar. Having skipped Saturday qualifying while his Honda engine was being changed, the Japanese driver charged through from the back of the field – and overcame a pit-lane penalty for speeding – to finish on the podiu,.

Franchitti survived this spin to finish an eventual fifthFranchitti would also drop behind Penske driver Hélio Castroneves as he struggled to get his tyres up to temperature for the final stint, but fifth place for the defending champion was a fine piece of damage limitation in what has been a tough opening to his title defence.

His finish was all the more remarkable considering he was one of several drivers to come to grief at the circuit’s insanely tight first corner chicane complex. Franchitti was tipped into a spin over the kerbs during on of the race’s many restarrts, but fought his way back up to be a podium contender until the final few laps.

The top-ten was completed by James Hinchcliffe, JR Hildebrand, Charlie Kimball, EJ Viso and local favourite Rubens Barrichello.

You can watch the entire race here:

 


2012 Itaipava São Paulo Indy 300 – Final Classification (75 laps):

No. Driver   Entrant Engine Laps Result
1. Will Power AUS Team Penske Chevrolet 75 2:08:18.2816
2. Ryan Hunter-Reay USA Andretti Autosport Chevrolet 75 + 0.9045
3. Takuma Sato JPN Rahal Letterman Lanigan Honda 75 + 2.3905
4. Hélio Castroneves BRA Team Penske Chevrolet 75 + 4.5489
5. Dario Franchitti GBR Chip Ganassi Racing Honda 75 + 5.1722
6. James Hinchcliffe CAN Andretti Autosport Chevrolet 75 + 6.2615
7. JR Hildebrand USA Panther Racing Chevrolet 75 + 8.3764
8. Charlie Kimball USA Chip Ganassi Racing Honda 75 + 8.5905
9. EJ Viso VEN KV Racing Technology Chevrolet 75 + 10.449
10. Rubens Barrichello BRA KV Racing Technology Chevrolet 75 + 10.8477
11. Oriol Servià ESP Dreyer & Reinbold Lotus 75 + 24.4711
12. Simon Pagenaud (R) FRA Schmidt Hamilton Honda 74 1 lap behind
13. Tony Kanaan BRA KV Racing Technology Chevrolet 74 1 lap behind
14. Marco Andretti USA Andretti Autosport Chevrolet 74 1 lap behind
15. James Jakes GBR Dale Coyne Racing Honda 74 1 lap behind
16. Graham Rahal USA Chip Ganassi Racing Honda 74 1 lap behind
18. Scott Dixon NZL Chip Ganassi Racing Honda 74 1 lap behind
18. Sébastien Bourdais FRA Lotus-Dragon Racing Lotus 74 1 lap behind
19. Mike Conway GBR AJ Foyt Enterprises Honda 73 2 laps behind
20. Ana Beatriz BRA Andretti Autosport Chevrolet 73 2 laps behind
21. Ed Carpenter USA Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet 72 3 laps behind
  RETIREMENTS          
DNF. Justin Wilson GBR Dale Coyne Racing Honda 66 Mechanical
DNF. Josef Newgarden (R) USA Sarah Fisher Hartman Honda 61 Accident
DNF. Simona de Silvestro SUI Lotus-HVM Racing Lotus 28 Accident
DNF. Ryan Briscoe AUS Team Penske Chevrolet 21 Accident
DNF. Katherine Legge (R) GBR Lotus-Dragon Racing Lotus 20 Accident

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Richard Bailey

Founder & Chief Editor at MotorsportM8
Hasn't missed a Grand Prix since 1989. Has a soft spot for Minardi. Tattooed with 35+ Grand Prix circuits.

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