IndyCar: Graham Rahal wins in close finish at Texas
Graham Rahal celebrates winning the Firestone 600 at Texas Motor Speedway on Aug. 27, 2016 (photo courtesy of IndyCar).
FORT WORTH, Texas – It came two months after initially scheduled, but those in attendance at Texas Motor Speedway and watching on TV were treated to one of the most exciting finishes in Indy car history, as Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing’s Graham Rahal edged Schmidt Peterson Motorsports’ James Hinchcliffe to the checkered flag by 0.0080 of a second, the fifth-closest finish in series history and tightest finish in the track’s 20-year history.
The Firestone 600, begun on June 12 but paused after heavy rainfall, resumed Saturday night after a 76-day postponement with Hinchcliffe (No. 5 Arrow Electronics Honda) leading the field to the restart on Lap 74. The remaining 174 laps provided an absolute thrill show as Hinchcliffe and Rahal (No. 15 Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing Honda) duked it out to the checkered flag, with Rahal sweeping past Hinchcliffe in Turn 3 on the final lap that gave him the advantage to earn his fourth career win in electrifying fashion.
“I had to set that up,” an elated Rahal said in victory lane, his first win since Mid-Ohio in 2015. “We just kept our nose clean, generally, and got to the end. We had a hole underneath Hinch we had to take there, and I had to set him up, make him think that I was going high, then cut across and get under him.”