TRACK: Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course (2.258-mile, 13-turn road course), DISTANCE: 80 Laps (180.64 Miles)
Favorites – Ganassi’s Race To Lose?
He’s won six times on this track. While he’s not been in contention for a win as much here as of late, I’m never counting Dixon out at Mid-Ohio.
Its time to start taking him seriously now. Palou, has won two of the three natural road course races this season and calls this his second favorite track on the schedule.
He may only have one win but it’s hard to leave the guy with six straight top seven finishes, five of which being in the top four off the favorites list. He feels like momentum is building for himself.
He has five straight top six finishes on the track including three podiums in his last four overall there.
He won the last time out at Mid-Ohio and is at his best on natural road courses. He came home runner-up in the last race out at Road America.
Following a week off, the NTT IndyCar Series is back in action this weekend at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. This will be the last race for a month too, so there’s a lot of urgency to go into the long break with some momentum.
See, for the guys that finish well this weekend, they have go into the four week break happy. The ones that don’t, well they have to think about it for a while which means the urgency to get back in the car will be high as they’ll be thinking about Mid-Ohio for a while.
The big thing though is championship mode as Pato O’Ward, Alex Palou, Scott Dixon, Josef Newgarden and Simon Pagenaud are all vying for the title. O’Ward had a rough go of it in Mid-Ohio last year while Palou, Dixon, Newgarden and Pagenaud have each done well in the past.
Palou was fast last year while Dixon has won at Mid-Ohio an astounding six times with Newgarden having three top fours in his last five tries including a win while Pagenaud has 10 straight top 10’s including a win in 2016.
That’s basically as we came into last year, three of the last four winners coming from Newgarden, Pagenaud and Dixon.
While Palou has won two of the three natural road course races in 2021 and he, Dixon and Marcus Ericsson all finishing in the top six in Road America, you’d think that mixed with the past Ganassi success on this track makes them the favorites, right?
Chip Ganassi Racing won seven of the first eight Mid-Ohio races back including a six year streak of a win each race, but they’re only won one race on the track in their last seven tries. Does that open the door?
We’ve had seven straight different winners at Mid-Ohio with Graham Rahal, Simon Pagenaud, Josef Newgarden, Alexander Rossi, Scott Dixon, Will Power and Colton Herta all winning during this span.
The last six races now has seen the driver that has led the most laps not win the race in the end. Scott Dixon led 163 of 248 laps in Texas 2 but he finished fourth. Romain Grosjean led 44 of 85 laps in the GMR Grand Prix but came home second. Conor Daly led 40 of 200 laps in the Indy 500 but came home 13th. Last weekend in Detroit, Will Power led 37 of 70 laps but was only 20th due to his car not firing under red flag. Josef Newgarden led the first 67 laps but didn’t lead the final three and was runner-up. At Road America, Newgarden led 32 of 55 but finished 21st.