2012 marked the seventeenth season for the IndyCar Series. Fifteen rounds would be contested to determine titles for teams, engine manufacturers and drivers.

The season opened in late March in Saint Petersburg, Florida and ended at Fontana, California, in September. Between these two weekends, there were races held at Barber Motorsports Park, Long Beach, San Paulo, Brazil, Indianapolis, Detroit, Texas Motor Speedway, Milwaukee, Iowa, Toronto, Edmonton, Mid-Ohio, Sonoma and Baltimore.

On the driver front, there were two important stories. The first was the departure of Danica Patrick as she left IndyCar for NASCAR and the second saw Formula 1 veteran driver; Rubens Barrichello join the series.

But the biggest story may have been the new car and engine package. The Dallara IR-05 was replaced with the new DW12 – named in honour of Dan Weldon, who had performed much of the development testing. In a continuing effort to keep costs down, officials capped the price of the DW12 chassis at $349,000.

In 2012, the normally aspirated V8 Honda engines were replaced by a formula that required teams to use a 2.2-liter turbocharged V6 power plant. Supplying motors for the series were Chevrolet, Honda and Lotus.

Round twelve of fifteen, conducted during the 2012 IZOD IndyCar season, was held at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. Drivers would compete in the Honda Indy 200 for 85-laps around the thirteen-turn 2.258-mile road course.

This would be the first Indy car event to run caution-free since 1987.

Scott Dixon entered the event as the winningest active driver at Mid-Ohio. The driver of the No. 9 Dallara DW12 had three victories and would collect a fourth before the end of the weekend. Dixon qualified fourth fastest. Early in the contest, he moved into second place behind Will Power. The pair pitted together and it was during the second stop the Target crew got Dixon out first. From there, he would lead to the checker.
Since round nine at Iowa Speedway, Will Power, Helio Castroneves and Ryan Hunter-Reay became the principal combatants for this year’s championship. Power entered the Mid-Ohio weekend twenty-six points behind Hunter-Reay. He put the No. 12 Verizon Dallara DW12 on the pole and led the first fifty laps before being passed by Scott Dixon. Power finished second and would lead the title chase by five points.
Last season Simon Pagenaud was without a full-time ride and only participated in three events. One of them was Mid-Ohio, where he filled in at the last minute for Justin Wilson. This year he signed on with Schmidt Hamilton Motorsports driving the No. 77 HP Dallara DW12. Before Mid-Ohio, Pagenaud had two podium results and would collect another this weekend. He started and finished in the third position.
Frenchman Sebastien Bourdais won four consecutive (2004-2007) Champ Car World Series titles but wasn’t enjoying the same success in the IndyCar Series. Entering Mid-Ohio, his best result in 2012 was a ninth-place in race two at Barber Motorsports Park. In round twelve, Bourdais qualified sixth fastest driving the No. 7 Dragon Racing Dallara DW12 and finished fourth after Dario Franchitti and Ryan Briscoe had issues.
Danica Patrick left the Andretti Autosport team at the end of 2011 to pursue a career in the NASCAR Nationwide Series for JR Motorsports. The seat vacated by Patrick went to Canadian James Hinchcliffe. Hinchcliffe was enjoying success with the new team and entered round twelfth fifth in the standing. He qualified fifteenth fastest at Mid-Ohio in the No. 27 GoDaddy.com Dallara DW12 and finished in the fifth position.
Dario Franchitti was having an ‘up and down’ season in the No. 10 GE Reveal Dallara DW12 for Chip Ganassi Racing. He won the Indianapolis 500 but had several finishes outside the top ten. R ound twelve at Mid-Ohio looked promising as Franchitti would start on the outside of the front row. Unfortunately, he was never in contention and ran into the back of James Hinchcliffe. He would finish seventeenth.
Starting at Milwaukee, Ryan Hunter-Reay grabbed three consecutive victories. Collectively these results vaulted him from seventh to first in the standings. Mid-Ohio would be one of his low points. Hunter-Reay qualified seventh, but engine problems sidelined him, dropping him to second in the points chase. However, his retirement meant the team could change the engine without incurring a grid penalty at the next event.
Alex Tagliani and Helio Castroneves were given a ten-place grid penalty for unauthorized engine changes. For Castroneves, who was second in the standings, this meant starting twenty-third in a field of twenty-five starters. In the morning warmup, things went from bad to worse when he cashed the No. 3 Penske Truck Rental Dallara DW12. In the race, Castroneves advanced seven positions to finish sixteenth.

14Scott DixonDallara DW12 / HondaChip Ganassi Racing85-
21Will PowerDallara DW12 / ChevroletTeam Penske85-
33Simon PagenaudDallara DW12 / HondaSchmidt Peterson Motorsports85-
46Sébastien BourdaisDallara DW12 / ChevroletDragon Racing85-
515James HinchcliffeDallara DW12 / ChevroletAndretti Autosport85-
618Tony KanaanDallara DW12 / ChevroletKV Racing Technology85-
75Ryan BriscoeDallara DW12 / ChevroletTeam Penske85-
88Marco AndrettiDallara DW12 / ChevroletAndretti Autosport85-
912 J.R. HildebrandDallara DW12 / ChevroletPanther Racing85-
1014Alex TaglianiDallara DW12 / HondaTeam Barracuda – BHA85-
1121Graham RahalDallara DW12 / HondaChip Ganassi Racing85-
129Josef NewgardenDallara DW12 / HondaSarah Fisher Hartman Racing85-
1317Takuma SatoDallara DW12 / HondaRahal Letterman Lanigan Racing85-
1424Giorgio PantanoDallara DW12 / HondaChip Ganassi Racing85-
1513Rubens BarrichelloDallara DW12 / ChevroletKV Racing Technology85-
1623Hélio CastronevesDallara DW12 / ChevroletTeam Penske85-
172Dario FranchittiDallara DW12 / HondaChip Ganassi Racing85-
1811Justin WilsonDallara DW12 / HondaDale Coyne Racing85-
1920James JakesDallara DW12 / HondaDale Coyne Racing85-
2019E.J. VisoDallara DW12 / ChevroletKV Racing Technology85-
2116Mike ConwayDallara DW12 / HondaA.J. Foyt Enterprises85-
2225Ed CarpenterDallara DW12 / ChevroletEd Carpenter Racing84-
2322Simona de SilvestroDallara DW12 / LotusHVM Racing83Mechanical
247Ryan Hunter-ReayDallara DW12 / ChevroletAndretti Autosport79Engine
2410Oriol ServiàDallara DW12 / ChevroletPanther/Dreyer & Reinbold Racing78-

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