The drivers of the IZOD IndyCar Seies pose for a group photograph before practice for the IndyCar Series Indy Japan 300 on September 18, 2010 at Twin Ring Motegi in Motegi, Japan. Image Credit: Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images
2010 Japan 300 -Tweeting Twin Ring Motegi
Qualifications for the IZOD IndyCar Series penultimate 2010 season race Japan 300 being held at Twin Ring Motegi, Tochigi, Japan finds the season points leader Will Power of Verizon Penske Racing in P3 along side Dario Franchitti of Target Chip Ganassi in P4, who at just 17 points behind, is looking to close the gap before the final race.
Tonight is time for Will Power to put-up or shut-up if he wishes to capture his first ever open-wheel championship in the IZOD IndyCar Series ... where as Dario Franchitti seeks his third championship in four years, second in a row, and is in his element on an oval track.
The reason it is time for Will Power to take command is that he will not find a better chance over these last two races on oval tracks to put distance between himself and Dario Franchitti because of two main factors:
1) Twin Ring Motegi is not a symmetrical track. The track is designed with a large corner at one end and a very tight corner at the other end which gives an edge to the driver that has the greater attention to detail - advantage Power ... the IZOD IndyCar Series inaugural 2010 Mario Andretti Road Course Trophy winner.
2) The front row is filled with Penske Racing teammates Helio Castroneves in P1 and Ryan Briscoe in P2. With a little creative team management during the course of the race aired on Versus 11:00 PM ET tonight.
Dario's challenge will be made a little more difficult in that he will start the race with three Andretti Autosport cars directly behind, all wanting a piece of this Japanese pie. Andretti Autosport's Marco Andretti, Tony Kanaan and Ryan Hunter-Reay are behind Franchitti, and E.J. Viso of KV Racing Technology recorded his best start on an oval this season in eighth. Panther Racing's Dan Wheldon will start ninth.
Scott Dixon, Dario's Target Chip Ganassi teammate will be starting nine positions behind at P11 and qualified over one-half a second behind at -.5320 of a second. It will be difficult for Dario to find any partners to run with whereas Will has a chance to be shepherded to a high finishing position before the final race to be held at the symmetrical style oval Homestead-Miami Raceway on October 2, 2010.
How they line up at Twin Ring Motegi:
Pos - Driver - Team - Speed
1. Helio Castroneves Penske 201.992mph
2. Ryan Briscoe Penske 201.594mph
3. Will Power Penske 201.463mph
4. Dario Franchitti Ganassi 200.964mph
5. Marco Andretti Andretti 200.187mph
6. Tony Kanaan Andretti 200.011mph
7. Ryan Hunter-Reay Andretti 199.623mph
8. EJ Viso KV 199.487mph
9. Dan Wheldon Panther 199.225mph
10. Takuma Sato KV 199.191mph
11. Scott Dixon Ganassi 199.020mph
12. Danica Patrick Andretti 198.935mph
13. Bertrand Baguette Conquest 198.794mph
14. Vitor Meira Foyt 197.950mph
15. Alex Lloyd Dale Coyne 197.556mph
16. Graham Rahal Newman/Haas 197.402mph
17. Hideki Mutoh Newman/Haas 197.361mph
18. Justin Wilson Dreyer & Reinbold 196.850mph
19. Raphael Matos De Ferran Dragon 193.813mph
20. Mario Moraes KV 196.460mph
21. Roger Yasukawa Conquest 196.296mph
22. Paul Tracy Dreyer & Reinbold 195.709mph
23. Alex Tagliani FAZZT 195.483mph
24. Simona de Silvestro HVM 193.561mph
25. Milka Duno Dale Coyne 192.527mph
Twin Ring Motegi (ツインリンクもてぎ, Tsuin Rinku Motegi?) is an automobile racing track located at Motegi, Japan. Its name comes from the fact that there are two race tracks at the facility: a 2.493-kilometer (1.549 mi) oval and a 4.8-kilometer (2.98 mi) road course. It was built in 1997 by Honda, as part of Honda's effort to bring the IndyCar Series to Japan, helping to increase their knowledge of American open-wheel racing. The oval course is the only one of its kind in Japan, and currently is only used once a year for racing. It is a low-banked, 1.549-mile-long egg-shaped course, with turns 3 and 4 being much tighter than turns 1 and 2. On March 28, 1998, CART held the inaugural race at Twin Ring Motegi Speedway. The race was won by Mexican driver Adrian Fernandez. CART continued racing at Twin Ring Motegi Speedway from 1998-2002. In 2003, Honda entered the Indy Racing League and the race became a part of the IRL schedule. In addition to IndyCar Racing, the track has also hosted a single NASCAR exhibition race in 1998. Honda, which had built the oval for the express purpose of developing its oval-racing program for Indycar Racing, did not win a race at the track for its first six years of operation. In 2004, Dan Wheldon took the first win for Honda on the oval. In 2008, the Motegi oval gained additional publicity when Danica Patrick became the first woman to win an Indy car race there. Caption & Image Credit: Wikipedia
2010 Japan 300 play by play via "tweet" by "tweet" -
IndyCarNation Race Control presented by iRacing.com will go live at 12:30PM local, 11:30PM ET with in-car cameras of: Sato, Mutoh, Patrick, and Kanaan
curtcavin @99forever You've got @kevinlee23 on your side. He switched midseason to Will for the title. I've stuck with Dario since Day 1.
99forever @curtcavin Fascinating -- Will has been my pick for the title since the day he signed with Penske. It'll be an interesting finish!
TheEDJE @99forever I'm with you - I've been a big fan since his early CCWS days, just something about him. Read This - http://tinyurl.com/2es9szr
99forever @TheEDJE Nice!
kvracing Driver Introductions has begun
FollowAndretti RT @FirestoneRacing So it's 84 degrees at #Motegi but it feels like 184. #hot #humid
indy44 Must record, best one in years RT @whatimthinking: oooh! Betty White episode of SNL! I'll leave that on in the background too keep me awake!
CrashGladys OK, hubby just kicked me 2 the other TV room, so #IndyCar HERE I COME! Holy ... LOVED the @tonykanaan piece. You, TK r just 2 cool 4 school.
prismsinc God bless you @TonyKanaan! Have a great time celebrating your son's birthday! #IZODindycar
Biaracing Ta todo mundo acordado? Is everybody awake? Já na band para a transmissão da Indy. At Band tv to Indy broadcast.
FirestoneRacing Sounded like "Pavarotti Sings Lee Greenwood" in #Motegi prerace ceremonies!
TheSpeedgeek @indy44 @SBPopOffValve Versus chat is absolutely out of control. No way to keep up. I'll be concentrating on Twitter.
TheEDJE @TheSpeedgeek There are quite a few looking in on Twitter - This will be good for a play by play via tweet by tweet live blog I do sometimes
SBPopOffValve No offense to VERSUS, but this is starting to feel like the longest pre-race show in recorded history.
Dale_Nixon @SBPopOffValve at least KV could be confident in booking several thousand lbs. less gear for the return leg of the trip #airfreightrebate
TheEDJE @Dale_Nixon Would this be in reference to the record number of wrecks and DNF's by KV team drivers? Nice!
RaceRemote In case you missed it - Randy Bernard - CEO of the #IndyCar Series interview on our SidePods Podcast http://snipr.com
SBPopOffValve ...and here's another of our EMOTICONIC chat images that seems appropriate: http://twitpic.com/2pupq3
IndyCarNation Laps away from green flag. Get ready.
The three Japanese drivers (left to right) Roger Yasukawa, Takuma Sato and Hideki Mutoh pose for a photo before practice for the IndyCar Series Indy Japan 300 on September 18, 2010 at Twin Ring Motegi in Motegi, Japan. Image Credit: Photo by Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images
GREEN! GREEN! GREEN! - The Japan 300 is underway at Twin Ring Motegi (photo)
Hardly 2 laps in and Baguette comes out of turn #2 into the safer barrier (photo)
FollowAndretti Green, followed by a yellow for Baguette. #izodindycar
kvracing Yellow Flag for Baguette. Viso is 11th, Sato 13th and Moraes moved from 20th to 16th
99forever Groan! Guys, the word baguette means more than just bread in French, you know. The toast jokes are getting old!
curtcavin First yawn: 12:05 a.m.
Dale_Nixon Another #IndyCar race in which #ParkMilka won't finish last; TGBB probation or pure genius?
TheEDJE The Tweeting Live Blog begins ion earnest! http://tinyurl.com/298ufjb
GREEN! GREEN! GREEN! - Restart - The Japan 300 is underway again on LAP 10
SBPopOffValve Looks like PT's crew might have fuel rig issues. Saw the fueler having an issue with the buckeye
IndyCarNation Alex Tagliani #77 has been sent to the back of the line after speeding on pit road by going 64.7mph
TheEDJE LAP 20 - Helio, Ryan, Dario, Marco, Tony, Will, Scott, Danica, Dan, and Ryan are TOP 10
shagers Will Power drives these ovals like Rick Mears. He's never up front early. We'll see if he finishes them like Mears... #indycar
99forever There's a really good reason for that. :) RT @shagers Will Power drives these ovals like Rick Mears.
prismsinc #Danica has moved from 12th to 8th in the first 30 laps
IndyCarNation Lap 32 of 200: 3, 6, 10, 26, 11, 12, 9, 7, 4, 37, 8, 14, 2, 5, 32, 19, 02, 77, 06, 24, 22, 18, 36, 78, 34 is the running order
TheSpeedgeek PT's up 3 spots since the yellow. Aaaaaannnnd another ad break. A very slow head shake here, Versus.
indy44 Helio up now by 2.4427
shagers Versus chat pole. 37% Dario, 29% Will. I assume the other 34% given @royhobbson is involved, have voted for O.J.Simpson, or something. :)
YELLOW, Flag LAP42 - Alex Lloyd slows
ajformulagirl WTF! Milka is in front of Simona!!! #IZODIndyCar
Every body dives in for a YELLOW Flag pitstop
curtcavin I hate full-field caution pit stops. I know too many crew guys
IndyCarNation [Photos] Lots of pit lane activity - IZOD IndyCar Series posted a photo: All the cars in. http://ow.ly/194dPk
IndyCarNation Throttle linkage is broken on the #19 car and will be fixed shortly to put Lloyd #19 back in the race
GREEN! GREEN! GREEN! - Restart - LAP 48
FirestoneRacing It's inched up to 85 degrees in #Motegi. Track temp 128. Ouch that's #hot! #IndyCar
TheEDJE At this point if Dario gains one position over Will he is running in the points lead
kvracing After 55 laps, Viso is 10th, Sato 14th & Moraes 17th.
TheSpeedgeek Milka is changing lines on the straights to hold off Taku. Who is in 14th. Huh?
TheEDJE Alex Lloyd re-enters race 14 laps down
IndyCarNation Lap 60/200: Castroneves leads Briscoe by 1.3800 seconds then Franchitti, Kanaan, Andretti, Patrick, Dixon, Wheldon, Power, Viso are top 10
chunter16 I wonder how much money Sato carried with him? There's no way that decal paid for his year. #IZODIndyCar
YELLOW Flag - KV Racing's Mario Moraes hits the wall with left front tire failure - car bottoms out LAP 68
Fieldof33 Congrats to KV Racing. As of lap 67, they have completely 201 combined laps, an entire race, without crashing.
shagers KV car, here we go, the race is official. #indycar
99forever There's your wrecked KV car. 68 laps in.. is that a record on the year?
99forever @Fieldof33 Seriously, I was JUST wondering where the hell you were. What a time and way to show up! LOL
Dan_Brunell Little known #Indycar fact: If KV racing wreaks another three chassis, Dallara will throw in a free set of streak knives.
prismsinc ALLRIGHT! @DanicaPatrick up to 5th position out of the pits with 70 laps in! #IZODindycar
IndyCarNation Matos #2 and Mutoh #06 did not pit during the caution to take the lead spots.
GREEN! GREEN! GREEN! - Restart - LAP 77 - Three Wide!!
TheEDJE Franchitti picks up 2 spots - Power getting passed by Andretti and Dixon
IndyCarNation Franchitti #10 up to 3rd place with Power #12 back in 9th place at lap 80 of 200
FollowAndretti We're back to green racing... on lap 82: Danica 6th, Tony 7th, Marco 6th, Ryan 15th.
Will Power is in P8 and Dario is in P4 on LAP 90
IndyCarNation Lap 90/200: Briscoe, Matos (off sequence), Castroneves, Franchitti, Mutoh (off sequence) are top 5
RaceDrive RT @DerekRoss: Need a Team Penske Program Guide ? LOL - End Fences | Helio = Red | Ryan = White | Power = Black
SBPopOffValve Well, Gold Leader had a shot at the exhaust port, but the TIE fighters just shot him down. Briscoe to the lead.
IndyCarNation Dario Franchitti #10 now in 5th place while Power #12 makes up spots under green now up to 7th place.
Just Past halfway (LAP 100) and the off sequence cars go to the pits
SBPopOffValve I think the HVM crew is having Simona come in every 5 laps to put the Legos back in place on the tub.
FollowAndretti At the halfway point @IndyJapan... Danica 6th, Tony 9th, Ryan 12th, Marco 13th #izodindycar
99forever I'm curious: If Briscoe or Helio were to be told tonight that "Will is faster, confirm," how would you react?
TheEDJE If the race would end right now - Power leads Franchitti by 10 points
YELLOW Flag - 4th caution of the race - Paul Tracy brushes wall and leaves debris
IndyCarNation Mario Moraes is awake and alert and being transported to a Mito hospital for evaluation from reported back pain.
Castroneves swaps positions with Briscoe - Comes in P2 and leaves P1 / Franchitti in P3 and Power in P5
IndyCarNation Lap 120: Castroneves, Briscoe, Franchitti, Patrick, Power, Dixon, Kanaan, Hunter-Reay, Wheldon, Andretti are top 10
FollowAndretti After the pit stop: @DanicaPatrick up to 4th, @TonyKanaan 7th, @RyanHunterReay 8th, @Andretti26 10th #izodindycar
GREEN! GREEN! GREEN! - Restart - LAP 122
IndyCarNation Paul Tracy #24 may be done for the day as his car was taken behind the pit wall after contact in turn 4 with the wall.
curtcavin More than an hour into the race and Graham finally got a call on the broadcast. #indycar
IndyRacingNut Must be cutting into my 16yr old's Cinemax time b/c he keeps coming downstairs asking when the race is over. LOL
indy44 "Time to sew a checkered flag Betsy Ross Danica is coming through" #ToddHarrisQuotes
IndyCarNation LAP 133/200 order: 3, 10, 6, 7, 9, 12, 11, 37, 4, 26, 02, 8, 5, 14, 77, 22, 2, 06, 18, 36, 19, 24, 78, 32, 34
TheEDJE If the race were to end now ... Power holds on to a slim 5 point lead!
IndyCarNation Castroneves has opened up a 2.6116 sec. lead over Franchitti with Briscoe another 1.1023 sec. back, then Patrick and Dixon in top 5
IndyCarNation Lap 145/200: Castroneves, Franchitti, Briscoe, Patrick, Dixon, Power, Kanaan, Hunter-Reay, Wheldon, Andretti are top 10
YELLOW Flag - Alex Lloyd bottoms out and catches on fire with 53 LAPS to go
indy44 Yellow for Lloyd on three wheels.
Dan_Brunell That way of starting a fire is definitely not in the Boy Scout handbook. #Indycar
indy44 Last pit stops, YAY no fuel strategy race.
IndyCarNation Alex Lloyd has been checked, cleared, and released from the infield care center after his incident earlier in the race.
indy44 Here we go P1 Helio P2 Dario P3 Ryan P4 Power P5 Danica P6 Dixon P7 RHR P8 TK P9 Marco P10 Rahal
TheEDJE If the race were to end right now - Power will hold on to a nine point lead over Franchitti
chunter16 The reason Sato has a reputation for wreckage is because he drives cars to their edge and breaks them, not because he can't drive.
TheEDJE @chunter16 EXACTLY - there is NO edge to Sato's driving - it's ALL or NOTHING!
99forever Longest. Yellow. Ever.
indy44 Penske cars are going to try and pounce on Dario.
TheEDJE @indy44 Yeah - Briscoe punts Dario and Will scoots by for P2 while Franchitti spins to a much lower P position
GREEN! GREEN! GREEN! - Restart - LAP 168
IndyCarNation Back to green at lap168 after extensive debris cleanup. Will Castroneves be able to open up a big lead after the restart yet again?
Will Power moves into Ps right behind Dario Franchitti in P2
shagers "Power is faster than you, do you understand this message"
IndyCarNationTakuma Sato #5 has gained 5 spots since the restart and is now up to 12th place (photo).
99forever Why the hate? Briscoe's box is so close to pit out that he could have slipped the button and still not been speeding at the line.
TheSpeedgeek @99forever Briscoe clearly beat Dario to timing line. Either he didn't speed and restarts 2nd or he sped and starts at the tail.
99forever Oh, true. Missed that. It's late here. :P RT @SBPopOffValve Then he should have been placed ahead of Frico. He beat him to the line.
IndyCarNation Lap 180/200: Castroneves, Franchitti, Power, Briscoe, Patrick, Dixon, Kanaan, Hunter-Reay, Rahal, Wheldon are top 10
TheEDJE 15 laps remaining and Dario is being pushed by Will with only 12 points between them if the race were to end now
SBPopOffValve Hey! Milka's going to get a top-20 finish!
shagers LOL. Indycar SkypeUp quote of the night: "They send 3 747's to Japan. 2 for the teams, and 1 with Jack Arute's sun tan lotion"
IndyCarNation Championship leader Power #12 is slowly closing the gap on 2nd place Franchitti #10. Will he catch Franchitti?
3 LAPS remain and the drivers maintain position
CHECKERED Flag (photo)- Helio Castroneves gets his 25th win in the IRL - followed by Dario Franchitti and Will Power with only 12 points between them
danicaracing Good run tonight for Danica - brings it home in 5th place at Motegi.
indy44 Checkered P1 Helio P2 Dario P3 Power P4 Briscoe P5 Danica P6 Dixon P7 TK P8 Rahal P9 RHR P10 Wheldon P11 Marco P12 Sato P13 Tagliani
IndyCarNation Congrats to "Spiderman" for winning the Indy Japan 300 as he climbs the fence once again (photo) & (photo).
scottdixon9 6th place finish for Scott at Motegi today....
IMSProductions [New IndyCar Video] Helio's Post Japan Qualifying Interview http://ow.ly/194ddV
Podium Photos - (photo), (photo), (photo)
UPDATE - Finishing Order:
Pos - Driver - Team - Time/Gap
1. Helio Castroneves Penske 2h04m04.4780s
2. Dario Franchitti Ganassi + 4.5746s
3. Will Power Penske + 5.0743s
4. Ryan Briscoe Penske + 6.4825s
5. Danica Patrick Andretti + 7.6057s
6. Scott Dixon Ganassi + 8.3641s
7. Tony Kanaan Andretti + 9.4093s
8. Graham Rahal Newman/Haas + 11.7163s
9. Ryan Hunter-Reay Andretti + 12.2125s
10. Dan Wheldon Panther + 12.4720s
11. Marco Andretti Andretti + 15.5007s
12. Takuma Sato KV + 16.0693s
13. Alex Tagliani FAZZT + 17.6774s
14. Hideki Mutoh Newman/Haas + 18.2811s
15. EJ Viso KV + 18.7349s
16. Justin Wilson Dreyer & Reinbold + 19.4293s
17. Vitor Meira Foyt + 20.1047s
18. Raphael Matos De Ferran Dragon + 21.2346s
19. Milka Duno Dale Coyne + 3 laps
20. Roger Yasukawa Conquest + 5 laps
Alex Lloyd Dale Coyne 131 laps
Paul Tracy Dreyer & Reinbold 114 laps
Simona de Silvestro HVM 85 laps
Mario Moraes KV 66 laps
Bertrand Baguette Conquest 1 lap
SBPopOffValve Unofficial results: Twinkletoes, Frico Suave, Powerbar, Inferno, Princess, Iceman, Kanostril, Graham Cracker, Hunter-RaceToTheParty, ShoeBoy
With that, we close the laptop lid on this penultimate race of the 2010 season ... see you all at Homestead-Miami Raceway ...
... notes from The EDJE