Track: Texas Motor Speedway
Race: DXC Technology 600
Date: June 9, 2018
No. 1 Verizon Team Penske Dallara/Chevrolet – Josef Newgarden
Start: 1st (4th-career Verizon IndyCar Series pole)
Laps Completed: 244/248
Laps Led: 59
Points Position: 5th (-68 pts)
- Josef Newgarden, the defending Verizon IndyCar Series Champion, earned his fourth-career INDYCAR pole on Friday and started from the top spot for Saturday night’s 248-lap DXC Technology 600 at Texas Motor Speedway.
- At the drop of the green flag, Newgarden jumped out to the lead and held the top spot over teammates Simon Pagenaud and Will Power for the first 59 laps, before the first round of pit stops shuffled the field.
- Despite a great stop from the No. 1 Verizon Dallara/Chevrolet team, Newgarden lost the lead during the pit sequence but ran second to Pagenaud once pit stops equaled out.
- Due to the high speeds and aggressive setup, Newgarden began to fall victim to excessive tire blistering on the right front and had to pit early on lap 96. The early stop dropped him a couple of laps down in the 16th position.
- Despite the “off sequence stop,” Newgarden was able to continue to run fast laps and shuffled his way back into the top three by lap 132. However, another green flag stop on lap 143 resulted in Newgarden once again falling several laps down to the leaders.
- Tire degradation would be an issue for the No. 1 Verizon Dallara/Chevrolet team for most of the night. On top of that, the team had to overcome a drive-through penalty for jumping the restart on lap 225 after finally getting back on the lead lap.
- Despite the issues, Newgarden was able to continue to run competitive speeds, eventually crossing the line in the 13th position at race’s end. With the finish, he remained fifth in the Verizon IndyCar Series Championship point standings. He currently sits 68 points behind leader Scott Dixon.
Quote: “You know, pretty much anything bad that could have happen happened tonight for the No. 1 Verizon team. Everyone worked really hard and the guys gave me a great car. Everyone did everything they could tonight. It was a great effort from my team. Pretty much, anything that could have went wrong went wrong tonight. That is all there is to it. We will move on to Road America.”
TIL NEXT TIME, I AM STILL WORKING ON MY REDNECK!