IndyCar

IndyCar | Bommarito Automotive Group 500 | Newgarden claims victory in rain-interrupted race as Malukas secures his first series podium

Josef Newgarden claimed his fifth race win of the season at the World Wide Technology Raceway in St. Louis, while rookie David Malukas’ bold overtake on the final lap over Scott McLauglin earned him his first IndyCar podium.

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IndyCar | Bommarito Automotive Group 500 | Newgarden claims victory in rain-interrupted race as Malukas secures his first series podium
Fuente imagen: Penske Entertainment: James Black

After a rain-interrupted race at World Wide Technology Raceway, Josef Newgarden claimed his fifth victory of the season and his fourth Bommarito Automotive Group 500 win. Behind Newgarden, rookie David Malukas overtook Scott McLaughlin on the last lap of the race and finished P2 securing his first NTT IndyCar series podium.  

Newgarden spoke to selected media after the race including MotorLat and expressed how frustrated he has been up to this point of the season with past races not always going well for the No. 2 Team Penske Cheverolet team.  

“All I can say is that this 2 car crew has been very patient with me. I’ve lost my cool probably a couple of time in closed doors just out of frustration for us. I feel like we’ve had small miscues timing-wise. That’s not really anybody’s fault. Sometimes you’re wrong time, wrong place.  

I feel like it’s been happening a lot this year. It kind of happened again tonight. I felt like we were in position and it was time to close. There was a barrier that got in front of us again, but fortunately we were able to get back out. I was so happy we could finish this race. Scott McLaughlin, he wanted to win too and I love that about us.  

We have a good relationship obviously. Each of us want to win but we he drove me super-fair there at the end, and we had a good fight.” 

The four-stop pit strategy proved to be the best call for the 260-lap race on the short oval. All the top three drivers Newgarden, Malukas, and McLaughlin who were on the four-stop strategy overtook drivers on the three-stop strategy on the final stint of the race.    

At the start of the race pole sitter, Will Power managed to pull away from the rest of the pack while Rinus Veekay made contact with the wall but managed to avoid hitting any other cars. The Dutch driver later suffered electronic issues with his dashboard causing him to retire early from the race.  

Then two laps later Pato O’Ward passed Scott Dixon but it was his teammate Felix Rosenqvist who passed the most cars during the first stint of the race.   

The Swede moved up 13 spots by lap 8 from the back of the grid and by lap 10 Callum Illott who started P22 charged his way up five places in the field. 

Power stayed in the lead by lap 40 and began to lap the back marker cars. However, Jimmie Johonson made it difficult for the Penske driver to pass him as they almost make wheel-to-wheel contact.  

Team Penske teammates Newgarden and McLaughlin both pitted on lap 125. 

The first half of the race remained caution free with no yellow flags brought out until lap 145 when Jack Harvey hit the wall at Turn 4. The yellow flag lasted until lap 156. 

On lap 149 Newgarden and McLaughlin pit again while race leader Power stays out. The 41-year old driver lead 128 laps, the most out of any of the drivers, however, the unlucky strategy call to not pit under the first yellow flag and the three-stop strategy the team put him on ultimately cost him the win. 

The other remaining top five drivers O’ Ward, Marcus Ericsson, Dixon, and Alex Palou also stay out with Power.  

The green flag came out on lap 157. And by Lap 164 on fresh tires, Newgarden passed Ericsson, Power, and O’Ward and gained over a two-second gap over the Arrow McLaren SP driver who was in the lead. 

Newgarden held the lead until lap 206 when he pitted with McLaughlin however the two-time IndyCar champion was held up in the pit by Christian Lundgaard and lost the lead to his teammate coming out of the pit.  

The threat of rain became greater and by lap 215 the red flag was waved for the weather conditions. 

The race continued after a two-hour delay and the top five drivers of the restart were McLaughlin, Newgarden, O’ Ward, Power, and Malukas.  

With 36 laps left of racing, McLaughlin pulled away, then Newgarden overtook him. 

Malukas battled Power and passed him moving up to the fourth position. With 17 laps left  Malukas overtook O’Ward for third position. Finally, on the final lap, Malukas made his move on Mclaughlin for second position as Newgarden crossed the finished line first. 

 

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