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IndyCar Driver of the Year 2011: 2nd

You voted Will Power into 2nd place in Crash.net's IndyCar Driver of the Year poll!
Top 10 IndyCar Driver of the Year 2011:
2. Will Power

Birthplace: Toowoomba, Australia
Team: Team Penske
2011 starts: 17
Poles: 8
Wins: 6
Top 5: 11
Top 10: 12
Championship points: 555
Championship position: 2nd

So there is is: just as happened in the real-life IZOD IndyCar Series championship, Will Power has lost out to Dario Franchitti for the number one spot yet again. Just what does the poor Aussie have to do to get a break and overcome that man!

There can be no question what a stunning year Will Power has had on the race track this year. He was especially dominant on the road courses, but his oval racing was also much improved this year as he south to close the one remaining clink in his armour that his arch rival Franchitti had been able to exploit in the past to sneak past him for the title.

Eight pole positions, resulting in six wins and a total of 11 top five finishes during the year - an incredible performance by anyone's standards. It's almost inconceivable that someone driving so well could actually miss out on going on to win the championship. But when the dust settled on the 2012 season, there he was in second place again.

Two of the pivotal moments for Power didn't even happen out on the track, but on pit road. He was hit by Charlie Kimball during a round of pit stops at Iowa, and was then holed in the sidepod by Ana Beatriz at what proved to be the final race of the season at Kentucky. On both occasions the damage meant a disastrous final result for the #12. More problems with pit stop timing compromised his Mid-Ohio race, and all the time Dario Franchitti was plugging away cutting his points lead and then going in front as the end of the season approached, and there seemed nothing Power could do to stop the title slipping through his fingers like sand.

At times the passion and desire - and the frustration and disappointment that it inspired in Power - has been all-too clear to see, such as his astonishing tirade against Franchitti after the two collided at Toronto, or his verbal outburst and now-iconic two-handed "flipping the bird" to race control at New Hampshire after that controversial and dangerous final restart attempt. In truth, such moments probably did more to unsettle Power's state of mind than he would like to admit.

Now the question is: has he learned from 2011? Can he repeat the same level of race success he's enjoyed this year while cutting out the mishaps? If he can, then he should be a sight to behold in 2012 - and difficult for anyone (even Dario Franchitti) to deny him a first, long overdue IndyCar championship.

Top 10 IndyCar Driver of the Year 2011 results so far:

3. Tony Kanaan
4. Scott Dixon
5. Oriol Servia
6. Ryan Briscoe
7. James Hinchcliffe
8. Graham Rahal
9. Ed Carpenter
10. JR Hildebrand



Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Penske`s Will Power during practice on the streets of Toronto. July 2011. [Picture credit: Jim Haines for IndyCar Media]
Will Power celebrates his fifth pole position of the 2011 IndyCar season, a clean-sweep of street and road course events.  [Picture credit: Jim Haines for IndyCar Media]
Will Power celebrates in victory lane at Infineon Raceway. [Photo credit: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media]
Will Power happy with the top time during Friday practice on the streets of Baltimore - September 2011. [Photo Credit: Shawn Gritzmacher for IndyCar Media]
Will Power`s sidepod damage sustained on pit road during the Kentucky Indy 300. October 2011. [Picture Credit: Bret Kelley for IndyCar Media]
Will Power on the streets of Baltimore. [Photo credit: Shawn Gritzmacher for IndyCar Media]
Scott Dixon sprays the champagne in Victory Circle following his win in the GoPro Grand Prix of Sonoma at Sonoma Raceway. (Photo by: Chris Owens for IndyCar Media)
Scott Dixon is congratulated by Dario Franchitti after winning the 2015 Verizon IndyCar Series Championship. (Photo by: Shawn Gritzmacher for IndyCar Media)
Scott Dixon with a victory kiss from his wife, Emma, following clinching the 2015 Verizon IndyCar Series Championship. (Photo by: Shawn Gritzmacher for IndyCar Media)
Scott Dixon celebrates his victory in the GoPro Grand Prix of Sonoma and the 2015 Verizon IndyCar Series Championship. (Photo by: Shawn Gritzmacher for IndyCar Media)
Scott Dixon wins the 2015 Verizon IndyCar Series Championship, his fourth series championship of his career. (Photo by: John Cote for IndyCar Media)
Scott Dixon, driver of the #9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet IndyCar V6, races to victory Sunday, August 30, 2015, winning the final Verizon IndyCar Series race of the season and the 2015 Verizon IndyCar Series Driver`s Championship at Sonoma Raceway in Sonoma, California. Chevrolet also wins its fourth consecutive Verizon IndyCar Series Manufacturer`s Championship. (Photo by Ernie Masche/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Scott Dixon (left), driver of the #9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet IndyCar V6, celebrates his victory Sunday, August 30, 2015, after winning the final Verizon IndyCar Series race of the season and the 2015 Verizon IndyCar Series Driver`s Championship at Sonoma Raceway in Sonoma, California. Joining him on the podium is Charlie Kimball, driver of the #83 Novolog Flexpen Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet IndyCar V6 who finished third. Chevrolet won its fourth consecutive Verizon IndyCar Series Manufacturer`s Championship. (Photo by Phillip Abbott/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Scott Dixon, driver of the #9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet IndyCar V6, takes the chequered flag Sunday, August 30, 2015, winning the final Verizon IndyCar Series race of the season and the 2015 Verizon IndyCar Series Driver`s Championship at Sonoma Raceway in Sonoma, California. Chevrolet also wins its fourth consecutive Verizon IndyCar Series Manufacturer`s Championship. (Photo by Perry Nelson/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Scott Dixon, driver of the #9 Target Chip Ganassi Racing Chevrolet IndyCar V6, races to victory Sunday, August 30, 2015, winning the final Verizon IndyCar Series race of the season and the 2015 Verizon IndyCar Series Driver`s Championship at Sonoma Raceway in Sonoma, California. Chevrolet also wins its fourth consecutive Verizon IndyCar Series Manufacturer`s Championship. (Photo by Michael L. Levitt/LAT for Chevy Racing)
Scott Dixon - 2015 Verizon IndyCar Series champion - Target Chip Ganassi Racing (Photo by: Bret Kelley for IndyCar Media)
Scott Dixon celebrates after winning the GoPro Grand Prix of Sonoma and clinching the 2015 Verizon IndyCar Series championship at Sonoma Raceway (Photo by: Richard Dowdy for IndyCar Media)
Scott Dixon celebrates after winning the GoPro Grand Prix of Sonoma and clinching the 2015 Verizon IndyCar Series championship at Sonoma Raceway (Photo by: Chris Jones for IndyCar Media)

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