Pocono is the start of the final push for the championship. This weekend marks the first of the final four races, three of which all consecutively between now and Labor Day. This is the final superspeedway, while next week we race on a short oval in Gateway. After that, it’s to two natural terrain road courses to close out the season.
Currently, Scott Dixon leads Alexander Rossi by 46 points. The defending champion Josef Newgarden is 60 points out in third, while his Team Penske teammate of Will Power is 87 points behind the lead in fourth. Ryan Hunter-Reay is arguably the last driver with a shot of winning the title as he’s fifth, 95 points behind Dixon.
They all will have shots of winning on Sunday too which creates more pressure on them because they all know the others could have top five days this weekend.
Dixon and Rossi have won the last two races of the season with Dixon winning at Toronto and Rossi two weeks ago in Mid-Ohio. Newgarden, dominated Iowa in leading 229 of 300 laps but didn’t win that day but he did win the race before that in Road America where he led all but two of the 55 laps. Power and Hunter-Reay have combined to win the last three trips to the Tricky Triangle with Hunter-Reay winning in 2015 and Power each of the last two years. Plus, Power won the Indy 500 back in May as well.
Dixon, won the other superspeedway race at Texas in June and has finishes of first, fifth, ninth, sixth and sixth respectively at Pocono. He was third at Indy in May too.
Rossi, finished fourth at Indy in May and third at Texas in June while also finishing third at Pocono last year.
Newgarden, has two runner-ups in his last three Pocono starts but finished eighth and 13th respectively on the two superspeedways this year.
Power, has led at least one lap in every race at Pocono and has four top four finishes in five tries.
Hunter-Reay has a win, a third and an eighth place run in his last three starts at Pocono and finished fifth in both superspeedway races in 2018.
As you can see, these are the five to beat for Sunday’s race and the points standings may not change a whole lot because all should have good days up front.