Will Power strongly disagreed with the premise behind a penalty that ultimately denied him a chance to successfully defend his Indianapolis 500 victory.
The Team Penske veteran and 2014 NTT INDYCAR Series champion was running second during a pit stop on lap 68 in which he drove over his team’s own air gun. The stop was placed under official review by IndyCar officials shortly after the incident and Power was eventually sent to the rear in advance of a restart on lap 79.
The penalty relegated Power to outside the top-20, where he would remain for much of the next green flag run.
He methodically worked his way through the field over the next 100 laps and was inside the top-five by the end of the race. Power believes IndyCar race control unfairly denied him a chance to repeat, especially since he looked every bit the equal to teammate and race winner Simon Pagenaud.
“They ruined my day for no reason,” Power said after the race. “I didn’t even hit a guy. Wait until I see them. What a disgrace, to ruin someone’s day for no reason. I didn’t touch a guy.
“It was a really bad call. Shame on them, man. We were really good. We were in that group at the end. It’s a disgrace that these guys control what happens on the track. I’m not really happy at all.”
Power was deemed to be in violation of INDYCAR rule book section 220.127.116.11.: Contact with personnel or hitting equipment and causing it to contact personnel;
While Power did not run over a member of his crew, he did hit equipment by running over his team’s air gun hose.
Power was looking to become the first repeat winner of the event since Penske teammate Helio Castroneves accomplished the feat in 2002.
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