- Associated Press - Monday, August 18, 2014

WEST ALLIS, Wis. (AP) - Juan Pablo Montoya and Tony Kanaan finally caught up with Milwaukee Mile winner Will Power at the post-race celebration, lathering his head with cream puffs.

Power pulled away when it counted on the track.

The IndyCar points leader maneuvered through high-speed gridlock to claim a crucial victory Sunday that gave him a little breathing room in the standings with two races left. After coming into Milwaukee with a four-point lead, Power heads to the road course at Sonoma next week with 602 points, 39 more than fellow Team Penske driver Helio Castroneves.

Before he could slip away to California, Power had to clean himself up at the Mile. Cream puffs are a specialty at the recently-completed Wisconsin State Fair, and the track sits in the middle of the fairgrounds.

Second-place finisher Montoya and third-place finisher Kanaan struck direct hits on Power’s ears that were so bad that he needed a little attention from medical personnel.

“That’s good, my ears are clean and dry right now,” Power joked.

Here are five developments from Sunday’s race heading into the season’s frantic final two weeks:

PENSKE POWER: All three Penske drivers remain in contention, comprising half of the eligible field. The third Penske driver is fifth-place Montoya, though it will be tough for him to leapfrog Power and Castroneves at the top.

A Penske driver has finished second each of the previous four seasons and five of the last six. This could finally be Penske’s year at the top.

“We’re a well-oiled machine right now with all three cars,” Power said. “If we have a couple more days like this, of course, it’s going to be a great finish.”

Castroneves finished 11th in the race. Simon Pagenaud, finished seventh, allowing him to move up to third in the driver standings, 92 behind Power.

DOWNHILL DAY: Ryan Hunter-Reay began Sunday by signing a three-year contract extension with Andretti Autosport. DHL also signed on for another three years as the lead sponsor of his No. 28 car.

Hunter-Reay, who started 19th, wound his way all the way up into fifth at one point. The Indianapolis 500 champion seemed poised for a third consecutive victory at the Mile - until a suspension problem in lap 168 ended his day prematurely.

He dropped one spot in the standings to fourth, but now trails Power by 108 points.

“I love this place. It wasn’t exactly the balance we wanted and this is probably our championship hopes going up in smoke right now,” Hunter-Reay said.

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