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Teams lodge protests over NHMS result

While Newman/Haas Racing's protest is about claiming what they believe is their rightful win - which would be the first for the team since Justin Wilson in Detroit in 2008 - the situation for Ganassi is rather more nuanced.

Certainly Dixon hopes to be awarded second place, which would be a boost for his title hopes after team mate and championship leader Dario Franchitti crashed out mid-race. But the major impact for the team would be regarding exactly where Penske's Will Power would be classified if the current results were overturned.

Power - who is Franchitti's closest rival for the championship - closed 15pts closer to Dario after the results showed him in fifth place at the end of New Hampshire. However, Power was one of those caught up in the aftermath of Danica Patrick's spin and finished the race crunched up against the inside wall on the front straightaway, leading to angry scenes as he called for Barnhart to be fired for the decision to restart and then flipping off race officials on live TV - both of which he subsequently apologised for.

If the results are revised and taken instead from the running order at the moment the red flag came out five laps after the aborted restart, then Power's points gain over Franchitti will be all but wiped out. That would restore the former status quo between the two drivers and hand the Ganassi driver a bigger lead going into the final five races of the season.

Team Penske have not been invited to send any representatives to attend the protest hearing.

Penske and Will Power also have yet to hear whether any action will be taken against the driver for his post-race remarks and gestures. IndyCar can be extremely harsh on anyone questioning the integrity of the sport, with O2 Racing Technology recently thrown out of the junior Indy Lights series for questioning the organisers' conduct and for allegedly attempting to organise a boycott of the Milwaukee race in protest.

However it seems that even if a fine is handed down, Power will find no lack of people willing to step in and pay it for him: even his team co-owner Roger Penske has volunteered to stump up any fine, after saying that Power was essentially speaking for everyone in the paddock over the state of the officiating this season.




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Will Power celebrates with his team after winning the 2014 Verizon IndyCar Series championship (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Will Power celebrates with his team owner Roger Penske after winning the 2014 Verizon IndyCar Series championship (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Will Power celebrates with his wife Liz after winning the 2014 Verizon IndyCar Series championship (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Will Power celebrates winning the 2014 Verizon IndyCar Series championship (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Will Power celebrates winning the 2014 Verizon IndyCar Series championship (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Will Power celebrates winning the 2014 Verizon IndyCar Series championship (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Will Power celebrates winning the 2014 Verizon IndyCar Series championship (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Will Power celebrates winning the 2014 Verizon IndyCar Series championship (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Tony Kanaan, driver of the #10 Target Chip Ganassi Chevrolet IndyCar V6, makes a quick pit stop while racing to victory Saturday, August 30, 2014 during the last Verizon IndyCar Series race of the season at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. This is the third consecutive win for Chevrolet at Auto Club Speedway. Chevrolet wins the Manufacturer`s Championship for the third straight season. (Photo by Brian Cleary/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Will Power, driver of the #12 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet IndyCar V6, celebrates winning the 2014 Verizon IndyCar Series Championship by posing with the Astor Challenge Cup Saturday, August 30, 2014 after the last race of the season at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. Chevrolet clinches its third straight Manufacturer`s Championship. (Photo by Michael L. Levitt/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Will Power, driver of the #12 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet IndyCar V6, celebrates winning the 2014 Verizon IndyCar Series Championship by hoisting the Astor Challenge Cup Saturday, August 30, 2014 after the last race of the season at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. Chevrolet clinches its third straight Manufacturer`s Championship. (Photo by Michael L. Levitt/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Will Power, driver of the #12 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet IndyCar V6, celebrates winning the 2014 Verizon IndyCar Series Championship by kissing the Astor Challenge Cup Saturday, August 30, 2014 after the last race of the season at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. Chevrolet clinches its third straight Manufacturer`s Championship. (Photo by Michael L. Levitt/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Will Power, driver of the #12 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet IndyCar V6, celebrates winning the 2014 Verizon IndyCar Series Championship with his wife Liz Saturday, August 30, 2014 after the last race of the season at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California. Chevrolet clinches its third straight Manufacturer`s Championship. (Photo by Phillip Abbott/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Will Power celebrates winning the 2014 Verizon IndyCar Series championship title (Photo by: John Cote for IndyCar Media)
Will Power wheel-to-wheel with Graham Rahal (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)
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Will Power in action during practice for the MAVTV 500 at Auto Club Speedway (Photo by: Joe Skibinski for IndyCar Media)

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