Karam Takes No. 24 DRR Oil2Soil Chevy to 23rd in Saturday’s
Race 1 of INDYCAR Harvest GP at Indianapolis Motor Speedway
A few pit stop issues hurt Sage’s chances in the team’s 2nd road race in 7 years
INDIANAPOLIS (Oct. 2, 2020) – Returning to the Indianapolis Motor Speedway for the third time in 2020, the Dreyer & Reinbold Racing team prepared their new No. 24 DRR Oil2Soil Chevrolet for driver Sage Karam with a different strategy entering Friday’s 85-lap INDYCAR Harvest GP at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Friday’s INDYCAR Harvest GP was the second road racing event for Dreyer & Reinbold Racing in the last seven years. And the Friday main event was Karam’s ninth career NTT INDYCAR SERIES start.
Starting 21st on the 25-car grid at the 2.439-mile, 14-turn IMS road circuit, Karam, the 25-year-old Nazareth, Pa., driver, made a good start at the green flag and picked off several positions on the opening lap. Unfortunately, Sage’s mount was knocked off the racing surface on lap four when Charlie Kimball drove into the Oil2Soil machine. When Karam returned to the track, he was listed in 25th.
The DRR crew took a different and pitted Sage on lap nine to replace the Firestone black tires to the alternate red rubber. Karam climbed his position to 19th before the next pit stop.
A few pit stop issues hurt Karam’s chances later in the race and he took the checkered flag in the 23rd spot. In the late stages of Friday’s Harvest GP, Sage recorded faster laps then some of the top-ten finishers which gives him confidence going into Saturday’s 75-mile feature set for 2:30 p.m. EDT. Saturday’s Harvest GP will be televised live on NBC-TV.
“Actually, we got a good start and made up a few positions early,” said karam. “Then Charlie (Kimball) hit me off the track around lap four. He came over after the race and apologized. I was surprised by it that early in the race. Then we had a couple of weird issues on a few pit stops that hurt us. Our strategy for the race was pretty good when we pitted early (lap 9). We got off the black Firestones and onto the reds. The Oil2Soil Chevy then ran some pretty solid laps. In the last stint, we put on sticker black tires and the car really ran well. But we were too far back with the early problems.
“Now, we’ll concentrate on Saturday’s qualifying and the race. The fuel pressure issue on Thursday kept us back from a full practice. That cost us some precious track time. We need all the track time we can get right now as a part time team.”
Josef Newgarden won Friday’s event over Alexander Rossi, Rinus VeeKay, Colton Herta and Felix Rosenqvist.