Search
Latest Posts

IndyCar: Alabama – Newgarden takes first career IndyCar win

Photo: Chris Owens

Helio Castroneves took pole for the second consecutive race and extended a Team Penske (Chevy) streak of seven straight pole awards, a run that spans the last two Verizon IndyCar Series seasons. 
Castroneves (#3) recorded a quick lap of 1 min, 7.1925 sec on the 2.3 -mile, 17-turn Barber Motorsports Park road course. The pole was Castroneves' 43rd, placing him fourth all-time in Indy car history, behind Bobby Unser (49).

"It's all about team effort," said Castroneves, who entered the race weekend three points behind front-runner Montoya in the championship standings. "For us, every practice is qualifying. That helped us to push ourselves to be in this position. It's not about because we have success here. I think it's part of it, but it's in the equipment. At the end of the day, it's a team effort. Everyone is working hard." 

Power (#1 Penske) was second quickest (1:07.3833) in the final round of knockout qualifying and posted the quickest lap in qualifying at 1:06.8050 in the second 10-min segment. Scott Dixon set the lap record of 1:06.7750 (123.999 mph) in the first round of knockout qualifications in 2013.

Team Penske's Simon Pagenaud (#22) qualified third and Dixon (#9 Chip Ganassi, Chevy) fourth. Josef Newgarden (#67 CFH Racing, Chevy) and Tony Kanaan (#10 Ganassi) shared Row 3. It was the second top-six start in a row for Newgarden.

"I just don't think we're right up there for pole territory, but at least we're in consistent Fast Six territory," said Newgarden, whose best qualifying position on a road-street course is second on three different occasions. "That's a good improvement for us. We're definitely getting there. I'm excited about that but I'm a little worried about (the race). I think we've got a little work to do on our race car, to make it consistently fast over a stint."

Castroneves held the lead at the start, followed by Power and Newgarden, who jumped from fifth to third. Newgarden passed Power at the end of the first lap to take second.

Power pitted during Lap 20 but collided with Takuma Sato (#14 AJ Foyt Racing, Honda) on pit exit. Castroneves’ stop was slowed by a lost wheel nut. The cars circulated under caution as debris from the Power-Sato collision was gathered; Newgarden leading Castroneves and Graham Rahal (#15 Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing, Honda). A subsequent drive-through penalty removed Power from contention.

Green-flag racing resumed to start Lap 40, with Rahal in front followed by James Hinchcliffe and Kanaan. Rahal made his second to the last stop during Lap 47, followed by Hinchcliffe one lap later. Hinchcliffe beat Rahal out of pit exit, but Rahal took the position back on track after just a few turns.

Newgarden was in the lead during Lap 53, followed by Castroneves and Dixon, but none of them had pitted since Lap 35. Newgarden and Castroneves traded the lead, with Newgarden emerging out front during Lap 55. Dixon put the Brazilian into third two laps later.

Newgarden pitted during Lap 64. Dixon came in one lap later. Rahal assumed the lead and pitted from it during Lap 70, leaving the Top 3 as Newgarden, Dixon, and Castroneves. Newgarden’s team felt he could make it to the end without pitting. Rahal passed Castroneves to take third with 9 laps left.

Rahal was cutting 2 sec/lap from Newgarden’s lead during the race’s final laps, as the leading car tried to save fuel. Dixon continued to run between the two. Rahal passed Dixon during the final lap. But Newgarden remained in the lead to take his first career IndyCar victory.

"This is the way I wanted to do it. I didn't want to win on some crazy incident, or on luck," Newgarden said. "This team deserves it. They gave me an incredible car and let me get out there and rip with the thing and pass people on pure merit. And that's due to CFH Racing - they were just incredible today. We're going up against the giants, but I think this team can be a giant one day."

 

 

Posted in: Sports
Geeks






Archives
May 2017 (11)
April 2017 (13)
March 2017 (11)
February 2017 (10)
January 2017 (20)
December 2016 (10)
November 2016 (11)
October 2016 (22)
September 2016 (25)
August 2016 (24)
July 2016 (27)
June 2016 (22)
May 2016 (20)
April 2016 (23)
March 2016 (24)
February 2016 (22)
January 2016 (18)
December 2015 (8)
November 2015 (16)
October 2015 (19)
September 2015 (30)
August 2015 (20)
July 2015 (24)
June 2015 (26)
May 2015 (31)
April 2015 (21)
March 2015 (25)
February 2015 (18)
January 2015 (13)
December 2014 (16)
November 2014 (13)
October 2014 (21)
September 2014 (33)
August 2014 (22)
July 2014 (32)
June 2014 (31)
May 2014 (20)
April 2014 (18)
March 2014 (14)
February 2014 (20)
January 2014 (23)
December 2013 (12)
November 2013 (16)
October 2013 (29)
September 2013 (26)
August 2013 (21)
July 2013 (23)
June 2013 (18)
May 2013 (39)
April 2013 (23)
March 2013 (33)
February 2013 (21)
January 2013 (22)
December 2012 (18)
November 2012 (17)
October 2012 (28)
September 2012 (20)
August 2012 (22)
July 2012 (38)
June 2012 (28)
May 2012 (31)
April 2012 (22)
March 2012 (33)
February 2012 (27)
January 2012 (13)
December 2011 (17)
November 2011 (15)
October 2011 (23)
September 2011 (24)
August 2011 (26)
July 2011 (33)
June 2011 (17)
May 2011 (34)
April 2011 (19)
March 2011 (18)
February 2011 (16)
January 2011 (11)
December 2010 (16)
November 2010 (12)
October 2010 (19)
September 2010 (12)
August 2010 (16)
July 2010 (16)
June 2010 (5)
May 2010 (2)
April 2010 (4)
March 2010 (3)
February 2010 (8)
January 2010 (5)
December 2009 (3)
November 2009 (3)
October 2009 (4)
September 2009 (1)
August 2009 (4)
July 2009 (4)
June 2009 (2)
May 2009 (4)
April 2009 (3)
March 2009 (4)
February 2009 (10)
January 2009 (12)
December 2008 (5)
November 2008 (4)
October 2008 (4)
September 2008 (1)
August 2008 (3)
May 2008 (4)
April 2008 (8)
March 2008 (5)
February 2008 (18)
January 2008 (3)
Further archives from 2008 and 2009 are available at the old Wordpress site. Click the logo below to break into the old apartment.