Newgarden wins second Honda Indy Toronto, Canadian Hinchcliffe third
Josef Newgarden zooms down the front straight during the first practice session for the Toronto Indy on Friday July 14, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
Ryan McKenna, The Canadian Press
Published Sunday, July 16, 2017 5:42PM EDT
TORONTO -- Josef Newgarden captured his second Honda Indy Toronto title Sunday while Canadian James Hinchcliffe once again reached the podium at his hometown race.
It's the fifth career win for Newgarden, who also claimed the 85-lap course on the streets surrounding Exhibition Place in 2015. The Team Penske driver captured his second victory of the season after finishing first in the Grand Prix of Alabama in April.
Alexander Rossi finished second, ahead of Hinchcliffe. The driver from Oakville, Ont., was also third in last year's event. That marked his first podium finish in Toronto.
Marco Andretti, whose father, Michael, won seven times on this track, was fourth while pole-sitter Simon Pagenaud was fifth after battling with Ryan Hunter-Reay.
Newgarden came out in front on lap 25 after a crash by Tony Kanaan caused a caution. Kanaan had his brakes lock up while leaving the pits and connected with the protective tires in Turn 1.
The ensuing caution caused the top-three cars of Helio Castroneves, Pagenaud and Graham Rahal to fall back.
Newgarden maintained an advantage of over two seconds for the majority of the race. Hinchcliffe made his way into third on lap 38.
Thundershowers were a threat throughout the race but held off. The day started out sunny and humid but clouded over during the event and it rained lightly at a few different points.
Fans packed the grandstands and stood along the fence to catch a glimpse as the cars whizzed by.
A caution came out on the first lap when defending-champion Will Power was hit on the right side of his car in Turn 3 by overall leader Scott Dixon. The steering on Power's car was broken meaning he had to be pushed into pit lane. He didn't finish the race.
Dixon was assessed a drive-through penalty for entering a closed pit lane. He was able to get back into the race on lap 60, moving into fourth spot.
Rookie Esteban Gutierrez, who crashed late in qualifying Saturday, was cleared to race after experiencing concussion-like symptoms.
Notes: Canadian singer-songwriter Tom Cochrane served as the grand marshal for the pre-race ceremonies. ...Honda Canada extended its partnership with the race through 2020 earlier Sunday. ...The Verizon IndyCar Series has a week off before returning for the Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio on July 30.