SAO PAULO (Monday, May 02, 2011) -Takuma Sato came up 10 minutes short of potentially claiming his first IndyCar Series victory. Will Power said "obrigado."
Power, the pole sitter and re-start leader of the rain-postponed Itaipava São Paulo Indy 300 presented by Nestle, came into the pits for a splash of fuel on Lap 36. Sato, who overtook Power on a Lap 25 restart, gambled on stretching the 22 gallons of 100 percent fuel-grade ethanol. But the yellow flag sought didn't materialize and the No. 5 KV Racing Technology-Lotus car had to pit on Lap 48 of 55 in the timed race.
Power inherited the point and went on to his second victory of the season and the championship points lead.
"Being on pole four times and had two wins is a great start," said Power, driver of the No. 12 Verizon Team Penske car. "It was a matter of keeping calm, getting past people without making any mistakes and then creating a gap to be safe."
Graham Rahal, who spun on the slippery rain-soaked course on Lap 26 while running sixth, finished second (his best since placing third at Twin Ring Motegi in 2009) in the No. 38 Service Central Chip Ganassi Racing car. Ryan Briscoe recorded his second consecutive top five (third) in the No. 6 Penske Logistics car.
Dario Franchitti also recovered from a slide in Turn 1 on Lap 33 to finish fourth. Oriol Servia was fifth, Mike Conway made up a lap to finish sixth and Justin Wilson was seventh. Sato wound up eighth.
Poor visibility on the 2.536-mile, 11-turn street course caused by persistent rain and approaching dusk forced postponement of the race until 8:05 a.m. (ET). The scheduled 75-lap race resumed on Lap 15. There was 1 hour, 19 minutes, 14 seconds remaining in the two-hour race window. The previous IndyCar Series race postponed because of weather was in March 2010 at St. Petersburg, Fla. -- won by Power.