The inaugural Grand Prix of Indianapolis got off to a bang as pole sitter Sebastian Saavedra was struck after stalling his car at the inaugural race’s first ever Indy Car standing start at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway. Both Carlos Munoz and Mikhail Aleshin struck Saavedra’s stalled car while moving through the pack of traffic that obstructed their view of Saavedra. All drivers were ok and the race was soon underway after the front straight was cleared of carbon fiber debris.
The race proved to be exciting with twelve lead changes over the 200 mile running. There were numerous battles in the backfield as well with plenty of opportunity for exciting passing through the esses complex that was at the heart of the grass mounds spectating area. The mounds proved to be quite popular with the fans. Turn one was also quite popular and the place to be for race starts and restarts after yellow flags.
James Hinchcliffe had a scare when a piece of debris struck him in the head during the race. He may have actually been unconscious for a moment, but luckily managed to pull off and seek medical attention for what would be diagnosed as a concussion.
Fuel strategy played heavily with the outcome of the race as Oriol Servia gave the lead to Simon Pagenaud who would go on to win the Grand Prix of Indianapolis. Pagenaud himself nearly ran out of fuel in the last laps of the race, but he was able to hold off a very close charging Ryan Hunter-Reay by .8906 of a second with Helio Castroneves nipping right behind in third place.
For the drivers this was a new and exciting event beyond the on track action that saw drama and various strategies across the field. The Grand Prix was the opening event for Indianapolis’s traditional Month of May action at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.