FeaturesThe Week That Was

The Week That Was: Impressive Performances in Mid-Ohio, Sonoma, and More

by Chris Leone // Website // Twitter
Images via Joe Skibinski/IndyCar (1); Lucas Oil Pro Motocross (2)

Another weekend of action motorsports is in the books as the summer months continue to produce plenty of racing drama. Over in Europe, one series ended its summer break, while another started one; here in the United States, there was plenty to watch out for on both two wheels and four, and on both pavement and dirt. Here’s a look at five of the top performers from the past few days:

Verizon IndyCar Series: Alexander Rossi

Third in IndyCar points coming into the Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio, Rossi returned his engine manufacturer to victory lane in their home race with an impressive performance. After turning a single lap in Firestone Fast Six qualifying to score the pole, the Andretti Autosport driver managed to complete the 90-lap distance with only two pit stops, leading 66 laps and beating Robert Wickens to the line by almost 13 seconds. Rossi also jumped to second in points, only 46 behind leader Scott Dixon.

NHRA: Blake Alexander

A part-time Top Fuel driver for 2018, Alexander has made his presence known in his limited NHRA Mello Yello Series campaign with two victories and three final round appearances in his six starts. The second win came in Sunday’s Toyota NHRA Sonoma Nationals, where he took down Tony Schumacher, the winningest driver in class history, in the finals. One of only four Top Fuel drivers with multiple wins this season, he’s only 86 points out of a spot in the Countdown to the Championship.

Lucas Oil Pro Motocross: Eli Tomac

Were you really worried about Tomac when he briefly lost the 450 points lead in Pro Motocross? If so, Saturday’s action at Washougal should have silenced your doubts. A 1-1 sweep on the weekend, even when faced with a bad start and briefly going down in the second moto, enabled him to keep rebuilding his championship lead over top rival Marvin Musquin. Heading into the final off weekend of the 2018 season, Tomac’s lead is back up to 15 points with three races to go.

World Rally Championship: Ott Tänak/Martin Järveoja

After a break of a month and a half, the cars and stars of the WRC finally returned to action at the ever-popular Neste Rally Finland. It was points leader Thierry Neuville who earned the eyeballs by sending it to high heaven on SS20, but Tänak and Järveoja were the ones to earn the event victory for Toyota Gazoo Racing WRT over Mads Østberg and Torstein Eriksen at Citroen. The Toyota crew still ranks third in the 2018 championship, but closed the gap to Neuville and Sebastien Ogier.

Formula 1: Lewis Hamilton

Mercedes’ Hamilton extended a track record by winning his sixth Hungarian Grand Prix on Sunday, holding off the Ferrari pair of Sebastien Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen for his fifth win of the 2018 season. The victory enabled him to extend his points lead over Vettel to 24, the largest advantage that any driver has held all season long, and the difference between first and 10th in the running order. He’ll hold that advantage for nearly a month, as F1 doesn’t return to action until August 26 in Belgium.

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