A wild showdown at the Texas Motor Speedway has come to an end for Round Five of the IZOD INDYCAR Premier Series-Oval series. The fast one and a half mile track provided high speeds and three wide online racing, resulting in quite a show. Drivers not only wanted to win, they wanted a Texas-sized win.
Predictably, the action was plenty fast when the IZOD INDYCAR Premier Series visited Texas Motor Speedway.
This weekend’s qualifier king was John Paquin, with a stunning lap of 23.738s. With limited races, the best of the best drivers came out to show their teeth to the newcomers and old dwellers. The strongest field (SOF) was a 2056, and the checkers that race were taken by this week’s point leader Aleksi Elomma. The Flying Finn lit-up the IZOD Premier Series this weekend. He had one win in two starts, two top fives, an average third place finish, and gained 129 championship points. Elomaa moved up into the second spot in the overall championship standings, and hopes to be in contention when the championship finale at Las Vegas Motor Speedway comes around.
How close was it? Apart from Matteo Bortolotti’s “runaway” win over Austin Benson by 1.450s, the margin of victory averaged .123s — and three races were decided by .075s or less.
Although Elomaa was number one this week, Yang Ou kept him on a tight leash. Yang headed into Texas as the points leader, and left as the points leader. Yang has been very tough to beat this season, and was even harder to beat at Texas. Yang was perfect this weekend, he had one win in his only start, one pole, and gained 128 championship points. If the SOF had been just a little greater, Yang would have knocked Aleksi off his throne. Yang will be a tough man to beat for the championship, but drivers like Jason Hurst, keep Yang watchful over the standings.
Jason Hurst, resides in the Midwest region, and wants to make a run at this IZOD championship. Hurst has lurked around the top of the points this season, but had never really come on to the scene like he did at Texas. Like Ou, Hurst was perfection personified in the Lone Star State. He won in his only start, got a pole, and helped his championship run with 127 points. With a strong win, look for Hurst to challenge the best in the waning weeks of the season. In addition to Elmoaa, Ou and Hurst, the week’s winners included Paquin, Mike Larsen, Ryan Terpstra, Adam Martin, PJ Stergios, Tomas A Klopp, Austin Benson, Matt Delk, Matteo Bortolotti and Thiago Moya.
Win, lose or DNF, the IZOD INDYCAR Premier Series drivers leave Texas in their rear view mirrors and pack-up for the Milwaukee Mile. Texas’ three wide, 220 mph racing will be missed, but will not be forgotten. Ou hopes he can hold off drivers like Hurst and Elmoaa at the Milwaukee Mile. Remember it only takes one race to jumble up the standings in the IZOD Premier series, and it only takes one race to get back in the championship hunt. The short track racing shall be fun and interesting to watch, but the Milwaukee Madness will be nothing like a Texas showdown.