Originally written on Race Review Online  |  Last updated 9/30/14
Indianapolis, IN- After taking a three-week hiatus the Izod IndyCar Series returns to action at the 13-turn Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. The scenic course just 45 minutes north of Columbus, Ohio will play host to the 14th race of the 19 race IndyCar season. Mid-Ohio is a very physically demanding track with the fast straights and the high g-forces pulled in the turns. It also has some big time elevation changes which also creates for a demanding race. Asking the drivers to race 200-miles physically and mentally wears them out. That’s why the same drivers are usually seen up front there every year. Leaving Toronto the series points championship got a lot better. Scott Dixon swept the two weekend races en route to his second and third straight win of the season. He moved all the way up to second in the championship and trails Helio Castroneves by 29-points entering this weekend’s race. Castroneves has 12 top 10 finishes in the 13 races run this season and wants to keep Dixon at bay but he’s struggled the last two years in Mid-Ohio. Castroneves has finishes of 19th and 16th respectively the last two years while Dixon has won both of those races and three of the last four victories at the 2.258-mile track. If that trend stays true we may be looking at a new points leader leaving Mid-Ohio this weekend. Another thing to watch for is to see if the Andretti Autosport drivers can get back going again. After dominating the first half of the season they’ve dropped off a bit and now have third and fourth spots in the standings. The defending series champion Ryan Hunter-Reay is third and still has an outside hope of repeating his title but he needs to have a good finish this weekend. Hunter-Reay finished 24th last year but has six straight top 10′s prior to that. He was unlucky at Toronto and needs to break the recent string of bad luck to get back in the hunt. He trails Castroneves by 69 points. Same is true with Hunter-Reay’s teammate Marco Andretti. The third-generation driver has yet to win this year but has 11 top 10′s in 13 starts. He really needs to rattle off some wins and top fives to catch Helio and Dixie as he’s 70 points down. He’s finished in the top 10 the last four races at Mid-Ohio and is a good pick to finish there again this weekend but needs to improve on those finishes and get in the top five. A couple of sleepers to watch for is Sebastien Bourdais and Simon Pagenaud. Bourdais enters Mid-Ohio with finishing on the podium two straight races. He’s finished in the top 10 all three starts in Mid-Ohio with two top fives including a fourth last year while driving for the same team he drives for this year. Pagenaud has had success there in ALMS and took that to help him in IndyCar competition. He finished an impressive 13th in his first ever IndyCar start filling in for Justin Wilson in 2011 and backed that up with a third place finish after starting there in 2012. Pagenaud is up to fifth in the season standings and too has a shot at the title but he knows he needs good finishes and reach victory lane a few times. Honda has a good package at Mid-Ohio and with Pagneaud driving a Honda and being good there he’s going to be a threat. Top 5 Predictions: 1.   9 Scott Dixon 2. 77 Simon Pagenaud 3. 10 Dario Franchitti 4. 27 James Hinchcliffe 5.   7 Sebastien Bourdais   Eric Smith is the Lead Motorsports Writer for Race Review Online. Follow him on Twitter @ericsportsguru   The post IndyCar: Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio Preview and Predictions appeared first on Race Review Online.

Report: Celtics, Cavs discussing three-team trade

NFC playoff picture, Week 17: Division showdowns

Jim Harbaugh once used player's blood as war paint

Bennett: Seahawks are ‘best defense to ever play football’

Ex-Ohio St. WR takes jab at Michigan's program

Michael Dyer academically ineligible, will miss bowl


Pro Bowl rosters announced

Red Sox all set with their starting pitching?

AFC playoff picture, Week 17

Fisher gets new contract, is now one of highest-paid coaches

Cowboys face tough situation with DeMarco Murray

Te’o to people making fun of fake girlfriend: ‘Find a new joke’

WATCH: Vlade Divac drains half-court shot, wins $90K for charity

Charles Barkley would pay recruits to go to Auburn

WATCH: Serge Ibaka, LaMarcus Aldridge ejected for scuffle

Stephen Paea angry over Pro Bowl snub

Manti Te'o is sick of the fake girlfriend jokes

Nick Young on Kobe-less win: He needs to pass us the ball

J.R. Smith: Knicks' season has been a 'nightmare'

Did Clay take back wife after Murray cheating allegation?

Recruit takes pic of himself in bathtub full of letters

James Shields likely to land Cole Hamels-like contract?

Report: Man United targets Gareth Bale, offers $181M

Johnny Manziel admits he did not take job seriously enough

IndyCar News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.

Ibaka, Aldridge ejected for scuffle

Nick Young on Kobe-less win: He needs to pass

NFC playoff picture, Week 17: Division showdowns

J.R. Smith: Knicks' season a 'nightmare'

Bennett: Seahawks defense is best ever

Ex-Ohio St. WR takes jab at Michigan

Recruit in bathtub full of letters

Did Clay take back wife despite allegation?

Has NHL Winter Classic lost its luster?

Biggest 'Scrooges' of the NFL season

The 7 best sneakers released in 2014

10 NFLers who disappointed in 2014

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.