Sunday’s Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio is the 33rd open-wheel Indy car race at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. The inaugural race was held in 1980 as a USAC-sanctioned event with Johnny Rutherford the winner. The current IndyCar series is being held at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course annually since 2007. Mid-Ohio’s surface is reno for getting better and grippier as the day gets longer. With this in mind, be sure to check out the latest auto racing odds and picks for this event.
2017 Honda Indy 200 Betting Preview
When: Sunday, 3:30 PM ET
Where: Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course, Lexington, Ohio
Radio: Sirius 212, XM 209
Live Stream: NBC Live
Can Pagenaud Repeat?
At the present time, the defending champion of the race is Simon Pagenaud of Team Penske. The last repeating winner here was Scott Dixon in 2011-12, winning the race a record five times, last in 2014.
First, Pagenaud started on the pole, faded a bit but then rallying for the victory. Dixon suffered an early mishap with Helio Castroneves to effectively end his weekend. On the other hand, Mikhail Aleshin seemed to have a potential upset victory in his hands when all of a sudden, a pit accident ruined his day.
Then, Will Power had the lead over his teammate Pagenaud on lap 66 after a restart. Pagenaud rolled up beside Power, bumping wheels, then just muscling his way to the front.
“I was asleep on the bloody restart,” Power said. “I should have been better than that. He saw his opportunity and went for it, as he should.”
In conclusion, Pagenaud pulls off the key win despite a lower back injury suffered in Friday’s practice. Pagenaud, who won the pole after the injury, took three pain-killing injections to get through the weekend. Power finished second.
Although the next four were taken by Honda drivers, led by Carlos Munoz in third and 2015 Honda Indy 200 winner Graham Rahal in fourth. Dixon, Pagenaud and Power are each +330 to win on Sunday.
Dixon Has Points Lead
Up to the present time, Dixon (423 points) holds a mere three-point lead in the series standings and has Castroneves (420), Pagenaud (404) and Josef Newgarden (400) all inching closer with just five races left in the season. Although he finds himself at the top of the standings, he also lamented a substantial chunk of points he had left behind across the opening 11 race. He had mixed five podium finishes, including victory at Wisconsin late last month, and two other top fives with a DNF after his spectacular crash at the Indy 500, a ninth in Texas and those disappointing results at the last two events.
“I typically try not to focus on the ‘coulda, shoulda, woulda’ scenarios, but I can see how our lead might be bigger if some things had gone differently – but I imagine it’s the same for every driver,” he said.
While a win would keep his first-place spot intact for another week, the New Zealand driver said nothing is guaranteed. Last year Dixon was the fastest driver during practice runs but dropped to 11th place in qualifying, crashed early in the race and finished 22nd.
Rahal At Home
No race is more important outside of Indianapolis to Graham Rahal and the No. 15 Steak ‘n Shake Honda entry for Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing than the one at Mid-Ohio. Rahal is +650.
“My hopes and expectations are high,” said Rahal. “We have struggled with our road course setup this year but at the same time I think we are capable of overcoming that. Our guys have put a lot of effort, a lot of time and mental energy into figuring out what we need going forward.”
With five races yet to be run this season, including the double-points- ace at Sonoma, Rahal is tied for fifth in series point standings with a total of 359. He is 64 points behind leader Dixon (423). This will mark Rahal’s 10th Indy car race here. His best start is fourth in 2009 and his best finish is his win here in 2015. In 2016, he started sixth and finished fourth.
How Has He Done in Previous Events?
In 2015, he led a race-high 23 laps en route to victory with a 3.4-second margin over Justin Wilson. In 2014, he qualifies seventh and finished fifth. In 2013, Rahal qualified 22nd, and ran as high as eighth on a three pit stop strategy but finished 18th after being held up by drivers on a two-stop strategy.
In 2012 he qualified 22nd, started 21st (engine penalty ahead on grid) and finished 11 th . In 2011 he qualifies sixth, stalled in the pits after his first stop and finished 24th.
In 2010, he qualified 25th, finishing at 21st. At the age of 16 in 2005, Rahal becomes the youngest to claim the SCCA National Formula Atlantic championship at the SCCA National Championship Runoffs here by a dominant 43-seconds.
Previous Honda Indy 200 Results
- 2016 – July 31st. Simon Pagenaud. France. Team Penske
- 2015 – August 2nd. Graham Rahal. USA. Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing.
- 2014 – August 3rd. Scott Dixon. Australia. Chip Ganassi Racing
- 2013 – Charlie Kimball. USA. Chip Ganassi Racing
- 2012 – August 5th. Scott Dixon. Australia. Chip Ganassi Racing
- 2011 – August 7th. Scott Dixon. Australia. Chip Ganassi Racing
- 2010 – August 8th. Dario Franchitti. United Kingdom. Chip Ganassi Racing
Expert Honda Indy 200 Prediction
Nine drivers have visited victory lane in the 12 races run so far. James Newgarden, Power and Rahal have each won twice. The Honda Indy 200 will be the ninth race on a road/street course with Rahal’s and Newgarden’s wins both coming on r/s courses. But, all things considered, I think Rahal is winning this Sunday. Although, I can say Scott Dixon can be another one to watch, especially because he hasn’t this won this one in a while.
But anything can happen at the last minute. For example, someone getting an injury or maybe their car breaks down. In summary, a lot of possible scenarios are floating right now. Meanwhile, be sure to keep checking out any latest updates before Sunday so you can make the best pick possible.