No. 1 Hitachi Dallara/Chevrolet – Josef Newgarden
Laps Completed: 75/75
Laps Led: 0
Points Position: 2nd (-32 pts)
It was a strong day for Josef Newgarden and the No. 1 Hitachi Dallara/Chevrolet team as they slightly closed the difference in the NTT INDYCAR SERIES championship points battle with leader Scott Dixon, finding themselves just 32 points behind after a fourth-place finish at the INDYCAR Harvest GP Race 2 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course.
Starting towards the middle of the pack in the ninth position, Newgarden attempted to move through the field quickly as he made his way into the fifth position by lap 21.
After a pit stop on lap 26 for fuel, Firestone primary compound tires and a front wing adjustment, Newgarden continued to maintain the fifth position until pitting for the second and final time on lap 50, taking Firestone alternate compound tires and fuel hoping to find just a bit more speed to advance on track.
Just a few laps later Newgarden, found himself in his race-high fourth position on lap 56, attempting to close a 13.2 second gap behind leader and teammate Will Power, Colton Herta and Alexander Rossi.
Unable to pass his competition, Newgarden settled for fourth the position as the checkered flag waved.
This was his 11th top-10 finish, and 8th top five for the 2020 NTT INDYCAR SERIES season.
With just 32 points between himself and Scott Dixon in the points race, Newgarden and the Hitachi Chevrolet team will race down to the wire at St. Petersburg, Fla. for the final race of the season to determine the champion on Sunday, October 25.
Quote: “We were a little shy of where we needed to be. If we had a phenomenal day like we had yesterday, we would be in really good shape. We were just mediocre today. I think we had a car to compete with Will and Herta and Rossi up there but we just didn’t start up there high enough. With the start, I got kind of buried on the inside and I tried to get as much as I could on the outside but then Santino (Ferrucci) came in running tight – but he was fine. It just got tight and I got pushed back a little too far. The key for us was being up higher earlier today. I just had to work for a lot just like Scott did. If we had a cleaner qualifying run, I think we really would have had a better day. I’m really thankful to Team Chevy. There were two wins for Team Chevy here this weekend. They did a phenomenal job, and obviously having Hitachi support is always big for us. Look, we’re in it with a shot. We’re going to go to St. Pete and try and win this championship. I just wish we were in a little closer position.”
TIL NEXT TIME, I AM STILL WORKING ON MY REDNECK!