2020 REV Group Grand Prix of Road America – Race Two Recap

2020 REV Group Grand Prix of Road America – Race TwoArrow McLaren SP Recap
In the NTT INDYCAR SERIES, doubleheader weekends are a test of every team’s speed, stamina, and resolve. Arrow McLaren SP proved all of the above on Sunday at Road America, running at the front all day and securing its first podium of the season in just the fourth race of the year.  The second race day of the weeekend got off to a rocky start in the morning, when Oliver Askew received a drive-through penalty in qualifying that compromised the No. 7 Arrow McLaren SP’s chance to start near the front.

The young American would go on to qualify and start the race in 18th.  His teammate, Pato O’Ward, went out in the next group and looked to find some speed. He found that and a lot more, putting together an almost picture-perfect flying lap as the checkered flag waved on the session and grabbed the team’s first pole of the season and the first pole of O’Ward’s young career. O’Ward would start the race with his former Indy Lights teammate, Colton Herta, right behind him, creating the youngest front row in INDYCAR history.

The No. 5 got off to a blistering start, creating a gap on the field and putting down quick laps. The team put together flawless pit stops all day, and kept O’Ward at the front of the field.  The race came down to the final five laps, when Felix Rosenqvist began gaining on the No. 5 car and closing the gap.

With only one more lap to go, the Chip Ganassi Racing driver made his move and went on to win the race. O’Ward kept his head down and finished the race in second, his first-career podium and the team’s best finish of the year.  The day wasn’t as rosey for Oliver Askew, who was hit from behind on Lap 1, causing damage to the rear of the car and the gearbox.

The rest of the day for Askew was about bringing the car home, as he lost capabilities with his airjack and shifting. Askew showed incredible perseverance and finishing the race in 21st.  Arrow McLaren SP heads to Iowa next, for a doubleheader on the short oval next weekend. Tune in on NBCSN on Friday, July 17 at 8:30 p.m. ET and Saturday, July 18 at 8:30 p.m. ET.
Pato O’Ward – No. 5 Arrow McLaren SP Chevrolet
Qualifying: 1stStarted: 1stFinished: 2nd “Today was really tough. The Ganassi cars and Felix had a lot of pace. We did a really good job managing the whole race. Toward the end, we had to mix with some lapped cars and some dirty air and it really hurt us. I gave it every single little bit that I had. I was pushing, pushing, pushing but I couldn’t keep Felix behind me. I really want to thank Arrow McLaren SP and Team Chevy. The car was really, really good but missed that little extra to keep the rear tires under us. We’re here. We got some good points this weekend. We are looking forward to Iowa. We like running up front, and I think we showed we have everything to do it.”
Oliver Askew – No. 7 Arrow McLaren SP Chevrolet
Qualifying: 18thStarted: 18th Finished: 21st “Looking forward to putting this behind us. Our race was compromised from the beginning after being hit in the rear. Lost a lot of downforce from the under wing and also had a gearbox issue so we were way behind pace and focused on finishing the race. Really unfortunate circumstances, and definitely a weekend to put behind us. We are taking this as a learning experience and moving on to Iowa next week. Pato proved that the Arrow McLaren SP Chevrolets can compete for the win so hopefully I can join him at the front.”
Taylor Kiel
Managing Director
“It was a tale of two races for the Arrow McLaren SP car today. The No. 7 car found themselves behind the eight ball early on after contact. They lost shifting and airjack capabilities so the pit stops and the shifting on track was compromised. Oliver battled all race to try and stay with the field but it was a lost cause. I’m proud of that group for sticking with it and making it to the finish with a wounded car. On the other hand, Pato and his team dominated the race all day from start to finish. The pit stops were really good, the strategy was great, and the team proved that they could compete for the win today. Unfortunately, we fell a few laps short and were overtaken by a car with better tires at the end of the race. Hats off to them. I’m really proud of the entire Arrow McLaren SP team this weekend. It’s been tough, we’ve had some adversity but we’ve overcome and shown what we are made of. I’m excited to get to Iowa so we can show our pace on the ovals.”