Sunday, November 23, 2014
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Power, Castroneves chase IndyCar title in Sonoma

By
From page B1 | August 24, 2014 |

Will Power

Will Power of Australia puts on his helmet before the start of practice for the IndyCar auto race Saturday, Aug. 23, 2014, in Sonoma, Calif. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg)

SONOMA — Just two races stand between Will Power and his first IndyCar series championship. After a big victory in last week’s race, he starts on the pole Sunday on a track he has utterly dominated for the past four years.

Power has been disappointed too many times to get excited about his chances, however. He isn’t thinking beyond the twisting, treacherous Sonoma Raceway — but he’s always thinking about Helio Castroneves, the teammate and friendly rival trying to chase him down.

“There’s still a lot of points on the table and a lot of racing to come,” Power said after setting the track speed record while winning the pole Saturday. “You’ve just got to focus on the job at hand and get the most out of every situation.”

Power and Castroneves have put Team Penske in position for an overdue celebration as the circuit wraps up with events on both ends of California. Power takes a 40-point lead over Castroneves into Sonoma, with both drivers tantalizingly close to their first series titles.

“At this point, there’s not much to lose,” Castroneves said. “Hopefully we’re going to have a great race. I feel the car is fast, and we’re going to try to do everything we can. I don’t know the strategy, even if we have to take some chances, which we should do. At this moment, not much (reason) to be conservative.”

Tim Cindric is well aware Team Penske hasn’t won the IndyCar championship since 2006, a surprisingly long drought for an elite team. Even though Cindric calls Power’s races, the Penske Racing president won’t anoint a favorite among Power, Castroneves and Juan Pablo Montoya, who’s still lurking in fifth.

After a Penske driver finished second in five of the past six years, they’ll all race to win in wine country, no matter the standings.

“The rules don’t really change internally as far as team orders, because team orders have always been, ‘Just don’t hit each other,'” Cindric said.

“Even though Roger runs Helio’s car and I run Will’s car, we know that the first priority is to give our team the best chance to win the championship,” Cindric added. “Both of us will be very content with either one of the guys winning the championship.”

It definitely matters to Power and Castroneves, who have both traversed rocky paths to the brink of a title.

After a serious crash in 2009, Power has three victories and a second-place finish over the past four years at Sonoma, seamlessly navigating the difficult track and the notorious wind gusts on the north end of San Francisco Bay.

Power surged into the overall points lead earlier this month and cemented his spot with an impressive win at Milwaukee last week. He also won last year at Fontana, where the season concludes with a double-points race next Saturday.

But the Australian has been in this position before.

He led the overall points standings in 2010 and 2012 with two races to go, only to crash in the finale while losing the title both times. In fact, only three drivers in the past eight seasons have held onto their points lead with two races left to win the IndyCar championship.

Castroneves faces his own obstacles, however: With nine top-four series finishes in his career, the Brazilian still hasn’t claimed an overall title. His final qualifying run was a disappointment, stranding him in sixth place for Sunday’s start.

A Penske driver has finished second in five of the past six years.

“Nothing in the past few years has gone as it should at the end of the year — for us, anyway, and for all kinds of different reasons,” Cindric said. “It’s hard to think that this year would be any different, but you just go through things that you know, and you let fate decide a few of the others.”

Another big finish would put Power on the brink of his first championship, but Castroneves is unlikely to be out of the hunt with double points looming in Southern California.

Six drivers headed to Sonoma still in contention for the title, although some would need Power to crash twice to have a real shot. Simon Pagenaud, who is third, hurt his chances with a 15th-place finish in qualifying Saturday.

But the doubled points for IndyCar’s 500-mile events have kept the championship race more competitive, and that’s why Team Penske isn’t celebrating just yet.

“It’s probably something that the fans enjoy, seeing it come down to the last race,” Cindric said. “For the teams, it’s difficult because you put so much into it all year long. For it to come down to the last race makes it difficult.”

 

The Associated Press

The Associated Press

LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | No comments

The Daily Republic does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

.

Solano News

Fairfield-Suisun sits between bay, valley

By Barry Eberling | From Page: A1, 10 Comments | Gallery

 
Salvation Army gets ready for Thanksgiving

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A1 | Gallery

Teens at Boys & Girls Clubs get their own place

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: C1 | Gallery

 
New mobile office adds reach to The Salvation Army

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A1

Time to start a local hall of fame

By Brad Stanhope | From Page: A2, 5 Comments

 
Conservancy plans Quail Ridge Walk in December

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3

Film festival brings people together for good causes

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3 | Gallery

 
Advance preparation mitigates frost damage

By Kathy Low | From Page: C4

 
Sudden Infant Death awareness and prevention

By Susan Whalen | From Page: C4

Weather for Sunday, Nov. 23, 2014

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B6

 
 
Two injured in Fairfield shooting

By Ian Thompson | From Page: A12, 11 Comments

.

US / World

Storms raise hope in California drought

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

 
Gambling nuke commander linked to fake poker chips

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1, 1 Comment

Winners and losers under Obama’s immigration plan

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4, 4 Comments

 
WWII mementos found in suitcase at thrift store

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Kohler introduces odor-eating toilet seat

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5, 1 Comment

Civic group: No Ferguson grand jury decision yet

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Report: Washington toddler shot playing with gun

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

Police: Pregnant woman, 3 others fatally shot

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

 
Hawaii airline tells pilots to return $4,000 bonus

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6, 2 Comments

Dogfighting thrives in years since Vick case

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6, 1 Comment

 
Man sets house on fire, kills responding deputy

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

Official: SD man kills 4, including self, wounds 1

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

 
Pope meets with autistic children

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

Biden announces new aid for Syrian refugees

By The Associated Press | From Page: A9, 1 Comment

 
AP sources: Obama broadens mission in Afghanistan

By The Associated Press | From Page: A9

Somalia’s al-Shabab kills 28 non-Muslims in Kenya

By The Associated Press | From Page: A9, 1 Comment

 
Kerry says gaps remain in talks about Iran’s nukes

By The Associated Press | From Page: A9

Iraqi forces, Islamic State group battle in Ramadi

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

 
Japan earthquake collapses homes, causes injuries

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

.

Opinion

Act of kindness at Raiders game

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A8, 6 Comments

 
 
State Capitol braces for budget battle

By Dan Walters | From Page: A8

 
Editorial Cartoon: Nov. 23, 2014

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8, 2 Comments

.

Living

Today in History: Nov. 23, 2014

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

 
Community Calendar: Nov. 23, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A2

Give the gift of gratitude this holiday season

By Dalia Adams | From Page: C3

 
Buddhist community builds shrine in Pineville yard

By The Associated Press | From Page: C3

Caught up in the spirt of the music

By The Associated Press | From Page: C3

 
Horoscopes for Nov. 23, 2014

By Holiday Mathis | From Page: C4

Hackers can get into everything, including your camera lens

By Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar | From Page: C4

 
Metrosexuals be gone: Europe is agog for beards

By The Associated Press | From Page: C6

Graphic novel teaching history at Mississippi schools

By The Associated Press | From Page: C6

 
Library project puts 50 years of yearbooks online

By The Associated Press | From Page: C6, 1 Comment

.

Entertainment

PUBLISHERS WEEKLY BEST-SELLERS

By The Associated Press | From Page: C2

 
Lamott offers healing words in ‘Small Victories’

By The Associated Press | From Page: C2

Eddie Izzard has book deal

By The Associated Press | From Page: C2

 
Whoopi Goldberg writing book about marriage

By The Associated Press | From Page: C2

Bryan Cranston reads profane hit nursery rhyme

By The Associated Press | From Page: C2

 
TVGrid

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B11

.

Sports

49ers host Redskins looking for third straight win

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Cousins lifts sluggish Kings over Wolves, 113-101

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

Stanford routs rival Cal 38-17 in 117th Big Game

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

 
Sacramento State downs UC Davis 41-30

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

 
Giants World Series exhibit goes on display Monday

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Vermette nets winner for Coyotes vs. Sharks

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Green says he’s ready to return to lineup for Broncos

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Bills practice in Detroit prepping for Jets game

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
No. 4 Duke tops Stanford to win Coaches vs Cancer

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Vacaville Christian’s Kenyon voted Sierra Delta League MVP

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B2

Suzy Whaley becomes 1st female officer at PGA

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Harvard beats Yale 31-24 in The Game

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

Oklahoma’s Perine runs for record 427 yards

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

 
Rivalry 150 goes to Lafayette, 27-7 over Lehigh

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

 
Bowling results for Sunday, Nov. 23, 2014

By Daily Republic | From Page: B4

Bocce results for Sunday, Nov. 23, 2014

By Daily Republic | From Page: B4

 
Bicycle racing for Sunday, Nov. 23, 2014

By Daily Republic | From Page: B4

Granada clings to 1-shot lead at LPGA finale

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4

 
Swiss lead France 2-1 in Davis Cup final

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4 | Gallery

 
This date in sports history for Sunday, Nov. 23, 2014

By The Associated Press | From Page: B5

.

Business

Businesses cash in as women chase bigger butts

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7

 
Tips on getting deals during Black Friday blitz

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7

 
Most US unemployed don’t get benefits: Here’s why

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7

At a Glance: Pros, cons of mobile-payment systems

By The Associated Press | From Page: B12

 
Review: No cash, cards, just mobile pay for a week

By The Associated Press | From Page: B12

Recalls this week: strollers, candles, chargers

By The Associated Press | From Page: B12

 
.

Obituaries

Norah Dean

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
Florentina R. Dulay Florendo

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A4

Albert M. Ranzani

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A4

 
.

Comics