Castroneves broke through to win Edmonton Indy

EDMONTON — After four years of frustration, Helio Castroneves finally broke through Sunday and won the Edmonton Indy. The Brazilian racer beat frontrunner Alex Tagliani out of the final pit stop, took the lead, and held off Japan’s Takuma Sato by less than a second for the checkered flag at the City Centre Airport.

EDMONTON — After four years of frustration, Helio Castroneves finally broke through Sunday and won the Edmonton Indy.

The Brazilian racer beat frontrunner Alex Tagliani out of the final pit stop, took the lead, and held off Japan’s Takuma Sato by less than a second for the checkered flag at the City Centre Airport.

Will Power, Castroneves’ Penske teammate, was third, 5.4 seconds off the pace.

For Castroneves, it was a big weight off his shoulders in the Alberta capital.

He had finished second three times in the last four races in Edmonton. In 2010 he took the checkered flag only to be stripped of the win for blocking Power.

“It’s my second win here — but today it counts,” said the 37-year-old from Sao Paulo.

“Today was a great day, realizing finally we can say we’ve won here.”

For two-thirds of the event, under sunny skies and hot temperatures, it was Tagliani’s race to lose.

The driver from Lachenaie, Que., started fourth and drove past pole-sitter Dario Franchitti on the first lap to take the lead.

He held off Franchitti and Castroneves until the final stint, when he changed tires, got passed by Castroneves, and slid down the grid.

Tagliani, with Team Barracuda, said the tires weren’t right.

“As soon as we started pushing, (the car) started sliding and that maybe was the difference,” he said.

“We just have to keep doing what we’re doing and it (the win) is coming.”

Tagliani was fifth at the flag for his best finish of the season. He was seventh at Milwaukee.

The win was the second of 2012 for Castroneves and moved him past Power into second in the driver standings, behind Ryan Hunter-Reay.

Hunter-Reay won the pole for the race on Edmonton’s 2.2-mile, 13-turn course, but started 11th for an unapproved engine change. He finished 7th. The loss snapped his string of three consecutive wins.

The race was accident free, with no yellow or red flags or restarts, which bunch the cars together and give the backmarkers a chance to move up.

Hunter-Reay said that was the difference.

“The guys had a solid day today, but we just needed a yellow,” he said.

“To take an engine penalty on a day like today — at a track with long straights — we expected yellows. Maybe lots of them, but we just didn’t get ’em.”

Power qualified seventh but started 17th on the grid for his own engine change. He, too, said the error-free race was surprising.

“We don’t get it very often in IndyCar to be full green on tracks where you can pass,” he said.

“I would have been much more happy if I could have at least caught up to these guys (Sato and Castroneves) and had a battle, but they were running fast.

“I could see them battling and I hoped they would come together,” he laughed.

Sato recorded the best finish of his career, but said he was disappointed.

“The winning was just there, close by, but we tried. We challenged and we attacked,” he said.

“It’s OK, we’ll take second place.”

Canadian James Hinchcliffe was never a factor. The 25-year-old from Oakville, Ont., started ninth on the grid but quickly dropped to 13th after getting pushed wide on a turn. He ended up 12th.

“It was definitely a tough race for us. The car wasn’t quite handling the way we needed it to,” said Hinchcliffe, with Andretti Autosport.

“I didn’t drive great at the start and made a few mistakes. I set us back at the beginning and we were playing catch-up after that.”

Castroneves, a three-time winner of the Indy 500, is enjoying a strong season. He has been in the top six in seven of the 11 races, won in St. Petersburg, and was on pole in Alabama. Edmonton had been no end of frustration for him, boiling over in 2010, when he took the checkered flag but was penalized for blocking Power.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

A 19-day trial has been set for June 2022 for Chase Freed, who is accused of shooting to death a shopper outside the southside Red Deer Walmart and firing shots at two other people in the parking lot. (File photo by Advocate staff)
Man who killed a shopper outside Red Deer Walmart in December 2019 to go to trial in 2022

Chase Freed charged with second-degree murder and two counts of attempted murder

A health-care worker prepares a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at a clinic in Toronto on Thursday, January 7, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
All adult Albertans to be offered first dose of vaccine by end of June: Premier

Alberta’s premier says the province will be “back to normal” when 72… Continue reading

Black Press Media file photo
Alberta doctors say trust must be rebuilt after proposed new labour deal rejected

EDMONTON — The head of the Alberta Medical Association says many factors… Continue reading

Security and police block the entrance to GraceLife Church as a fence goes up around it near Edmonton on Wednesday April 7, 2021. The Alberta government has closed down and fenced off a church that has been charged with refusing to follow COVID-19 health rules. Alberta Health Services, in a statement, says GraceLife church will remain closed until it shows it will comply with public-health measures meant to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Expert says gathering outside Alberta church attended by many conspiracy theorists

SPRUCE GROVE, Alta. — An expert investigating hate groups says a weekend… Continue reading

Interior Health nurses administer Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccines to seniors and care aids in Kelowna on Tuesday, March 16. (Phil McLachlan/Kelowna Capital News)
Canada set to receive 1M Pfizer-BioNTech doses, Moderna playing catch-up

OTTAWA — The federal government is expecting Moderna to make good on… Continue reading

Minister of Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness Bill Blair responds to a question during question period in the House of Commons on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on December 11, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Patrick Doyle
New regulator to stop sexual exploitation of children online: public safety minister

OTTAWA — Public Safety Minister Bill Blair says the government will introduce… Continue reading

Gordon Greenwood Elementary Grade 7 students were assigned to write about climate change. The Langley Advance Times is pleased to present a selection of their writings. (Sasha/Special to the Langley Advance Times)
Canada’s greenhouse gas emissions increased slightly in 2019: report

OTTAWA — A new report shows Canada’s greenhouse gas emissions increased slightly… Continue reading

Conservative leader Erin O'Toole holds a press conference on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, April 6, 2020. Top Tory leaders of past and present will speak with supporters today about what a conservative economic recovery from COVID-19 could look like. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
O’Toole to vote against Conservative MP’s private bill on ‘sex-selective abortion’

OTTAWA — Conservative Leader Erin O’Toole says he will vote against a… Continue reading

Eugene Kwon of Gratia Bakery and Cafe says the business will be relying on take out orders and a small patio. (Neil Corbett/The News)
Small business struggling amid COVID-19 pandemic looks for aid in Liberals’ budget

OTTAWA — A group representing thousands of the country’s small businesses says… Continue reading

Ron Howard is photographed at the "Inferno" film premiere on Oct. 25, 2016 in Los Angeles. (Buckner/Rex Shutterstock/Zuma Press/TNS)
Brothers Ron and Clint Howard have memoir coming in October

NEW YORK — Filmmaker-actor Ron Howard and actor Clint Howard, brothers, former… Continue reading

FILE - In this Saturday, March 27, 2021 file photo, Buffalo Sabres’ Taylor Hall plays against the Boston Bruins during the second period of an NHL hockey game, in Boston. The Buffalo Sabres could trade 2018 MVP Hall, who signed for just this season and is a pending free agent. (AP Photo/Michael Dwyer, File)
Boston Bruins acquire Taylor Hall to kick off NHL trade deadline day

Trade deadline day in the NHL has started with the Boston Bruins… Continue reading

The Huawei logo displayed at the main office of Chinese tech giant Huawei in Warsaw, Poland, on Friday, Jan. 11, 2019. Poland’s Internal Security Agency has charged a Chinese manager at Huawei in Poland and one of its own former officers with espionage against Poland on behalf of China. (AP Photo/Czarek Sokolowski)
Huawei, HSBC agree on document deal for extradition case

HONG KONG — Chinese telecommunications equipment firm Huawei said Monday that it… Continue reading

The Montreal Police logo is seen on a police car in Montreal on Wednesday, July 8, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
Hundreds defy Montreal’s 8 p.m. curfew in violent, destructive protest

MONTREAL — Hundreds of protestors gathered in Montreal on Sunday in defiance… Continue reading

Most Read