No. 1 XPEL Dallara/Chevrolet – Josef Newgarden
Laps Completed: 80/80
Laps Led: 4
Points Position: 3rd (-40 pts)
Josef Newgarden and the No. 1 XPEL Dallara/Chevrolet had a hard-fought day, leading laps and looking to capitalize on some solid race strategy, but ultimately settled for seventh in the 80-lap event at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course.
The Tennessean started sixth and ran fifth early, then pitted for the first time on lap 15 for alternate tires and fuel in hopes of moving up through the field.
The strategy worked, and Newgarden eventually found himself second behind teammate Will Power as the leaders cycled through pit stops.
Shortly before pitting for fuel and alternate tires after complaining of tire fall off for most of the race, Newgarden was caught as the caution flag waved causing him to drop further on the leaderboard. As several others had already pitted before the caution, Newgarden was forced to come to pit road during the yellow, allowing those who pitted to jump him on the track.
He continued to run his race and his pace, and by lap 58, Newgarden took hold of the lead during more green-flag stops as the final laps wound down.
However, as he tried to battle his way back to the front, he was caught in traffic, leading to a seventh-place finish.
Quote: “It was a tough day – really disappointing. We got hosed today by the caution, both Will [Power] and myself. I felt like we had a pretty strong chance of being able to finish 1-2 and it’s a shame to miss it by just a little bit. We almost pitted right before it came out but went one lap longer. I guess it was a good day in reality. We got up to the front there with Will running 1-2 and then wound up in the back with the yellow. From there we just tried to claw back our way as much as we could from 15th or 16th. It was just a tough pill to swallow in the middle there. Our XPEL Team Chevy car was good. I felt really proud of us this weekend and thought we made nice little baby steps every session and we seemed to be getting better. I thought we were relatively decent compared to Will who seemed to be the best this weekend. It was awesome to have XPEL on the car this weekend and at the end of the day it was just a shame we weren’t able to convert and finish the race 1-2.”
TIL NEXT TIME, I AM STILL WORKING ON MY REDNECK!