Having watched a mix of Juan Pablo Montoya, Scott Dixon, Helio Castroneves and Simon Pagenaud in the top-3 today, it came as quite the surprise to see Sebastian Bourdais take the checkered with Conor Daly following. It was a well-deserved win considering the light on-and-off drizzle–a sign of unpredictable weather, which I’m sure was making teams rethink their race strategies for the last 20 laps of the race.
Cautions only brought more intensity to the race as the near 60-second gaps between the last 10 positions and position 1 could be closed and make for an exciting mix-up in the lineup as everyone vied for new spots on the grid.
And the narrow straightaways and multiple turns (lucky 13 to be exact), make for a somewhat difficult course for passes and advancement. In fact, during the latter half of the race, I watched as Alexander Rossi made a pass on turn 5, only to be immediately be passed in the straightaway into turn 6.
Luckily, the rain held off just long enough to finish Race #1 at Belle Isle this afternoon to watch as Sebastian Bourdais would take the checkered flag, followed closely by Conor Daly and Juan Pablo Montoya, whose 3rd place finish made for a redeeming comeback after his experience at Indy last weekend.
Brava sirs. I’m excited to see what they bring for Race #2 of the Dual in Detroit tomorrow.
The three winning cars of Race 1 at the Dual in Detroit: #11 Sebastian Bourdais, #19 Conor Daly, #2 Juan Pablo Montoya.
And those three gentlemen playing with champagne on the podium.