Newgarden Manages 12th Place Result Despite Damaged Front Wing
(ST. PETERSBURG, Fla.) March 29, 2015 – Race Recap
Luca Filippi finished 9th in today’s Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg in his first race around the street circuit. This was only the Italian’s ninth start in the Verizon IndyCar Series and his first with CFH Racing in the No. 20 Fuzzy’s Vodka Chevrolet.
Josef Newgarden managed a 12th place result today, despite the No. 67 Hartman Oil Chevrolet having a damaged front wing. Graham Rahal and Charlie Kimball made contact on Lap 54, causing Kimball to go into the Turn 10 tire barrier. In the ensuing chain reaction, Newgarden made contact with the rear of Sebastien Bourdais’ car. The Nashville, Tenn. native was able to continue in the event without making an additional pit stop to change the front wing.
Today’s 9th place result was Filippi’s career best finish in the Verizon IndyCar Series. His previous best finish of 10th came in the first of the Houston doubleheaders in 2013.
The finish by Filippi ties CFH Racing’s best team result in St. Petersburg. Rahal claimed 9th place in 2010 and Newgarden scored a 9th place result in last year’s event.
Filippi started in the race from the 19th position and gained 10 positions over the course of the race; Newgarden started in 10th and ran as high as 2nd in the beginning stages of the event.
The 2015 Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg featured 110 laps around the 1.8-mile, 14-turn street circuit in the streets of St. Petersburg, Fla. Both CFH Racing cars completed three pit stops over the course of the race.
CFH Racing will return to the track April 10-12 at NOLA Motorsports Park for the Indy Grand Prix of Louisiana.
LUCA FILIPPI, NO. 20 FUZZY’S VODKA CHEVROLET, FINISHED 9TH: “I am happy with that. Obviously, so many things are new to me. On one hand we want to have good results, on the other hand we know that we have to learn a little before we can really fight for the podium. The team did a great job, they gave me great pit stops and we can build on this. This is a good start for the season, from here I can just get better and better.
JOSEF NEWGARDEN, NO. 67 HARTMAN OIL CHEVROLET, FINISHED 12TH: “It was a really strong effort from everyone to try to keep us in the fight. All the CFH guys were awesome, as they always are. I have to say thank you to Ed (Carpenter), Wink (Hartman) and Sarah (Fisher) for everything that to do to make this happen. Twelfth is not the best finishing position, but we can only go up from there. I think we had a car that was able to challenge for a top five finish, but we were in the wrong place at the wrong time. Right when Charlie (Kimball) got spun out in Turn 10 it was a bottleneck and I got into the back of (Sebastien) Bourdais and damaged the front wing. It sort of hurt us; we struggled to fight with everyone after that. We lost a lot of pace then did what we could to finish as strong as possible. Twelfth was the best we had today, but I think we have more for the future.”