FORT WORTH, TX – The old tale states that second place is the first loser. It’s also noted that second place feels like kissing your sister. Well, James Hinchcliffe says those statements are true.
Hinchcliffe, led this race for 76 days, as he it was an inside joke within the paddock that he led at Texas for that long. But, he led for nearly the entire night in the resumption of the Firestone 600k and lost it on the final corner.
In fact, he lost it by 0.0080-seconds which was the fifth closest finish, or defeat, if your Hinchcliffe in series history.
“There’s no describing it,” a disappointed Hinchcliffe said after his second place finish on Saturday night.” To lead all day and not win is disappointing. Pit stops were clean. Racing was clean. Those yellows in the end just killed us. We led them all except the one that mattered. To be that close and be this frustrated after our best finish sucks.”
Once the green flag dropped to resume the action on Lap 74, Hinchcliffe, battled wheel-to-wheel with Ryan Hunter-Reay for the first several laps. But, his No. 5 Honda was so strong as he pulled away. He would lead 188 of the 248 laps overall before Graham Rahal got by him in Turn 3. They’d drag race to the start finish line which saw Rahal narrowly beat Hinchcliffe in the closest finish in Texas Motor Speedway history.
The Canadian hasn’t won since New Orleans back in May and was in prime contention with the best car to end that winless drought tonight. To finish second was bittersweet as it was his best finish of the year, but not where he should have ended up.
The runner-up finish though was his fifth straight top 10 and ninth in his last 12 starts.