Team Penske NTT INDYCAR SERIES Race Recap
Track: Road America
Race: Sonsio Grand Prix of Road America presented by AMR
Date: June 12, 2022
No. 2 PPG Dallara/Chevrolet – Josef Newgarden
Finish: 1st – 23rd career INDYCAR SERIES victory
Laps Led: 26
Point Standings: 3rd (-32 pts)
Race Rundown: Josef Newgarden and the No. 2 PPG Chevrolet team earned a bit of redemption by winning the Sonsio Grand Prix of Road America on Sunday afternoon, one year after dominating the race only to see a mechanical issue derail their chance to win. Newgarden had to endure two late-race cautions but was able to hold off Alexander Rossi to earn his 23rd NTT INDYCAR SERIES victory. He also claimed the PeopleReady “Force for Good Challenge” in its first year of existence, which awarded $1 million to the first driver and team to win on an oval, street course and road course. Newgarden’s share of $500,000 will be split between the Serious Fun Children’s Network and Wags and Walks of Nashville. After pitting under the green flag on lap 15, Newgarden was able to pass Rossi on pit road to take command of the race. From there, the two-time series champion cycled in and out of the lead through various strategies around him but was in the lead when it mattered to score the win.
Newgarden’s Thoughts: “I was just trying to stay focused on what I had to do. Just an unbelievable job by everyone at Team Penske. Great to have PPG on board with us. We’ve had a lot of success with this car and Team Chevy. Team Chevy’s bringing it with this engine. Just so proud to be here and to win PeopleReady Challenge. I keep forgetting about this million bucks. I just kept forgetting about it. To finally get it done and to most importantly give that money to charity. Half that money is going to charity with SeriousFun Children’s Network and Wags and Walks Nashville. I hope they are happy about that. That’s a lot of money coming their way.”
No. 3 Sonsio Dallara/Chevrolet – Scott McLaughlin
Laps Led: 0
Point Standings: 9th (-94 pts)
Race Rundown: Scott McLaughlin and the No. 3 Sonsio Chevrolet team had needed a solid run in Sunday’s Sonsio Grand Prix of Road America, and the New Zealander delivered with a seventh-place finish. After narrowly missing out on the Firestone Fast Six during Saturday afternoon’s qualifying session, McLaughlin came out aggressive when the green flag dropped. Together with sound strategy and good work on pit road, McLaughlin kept his Chevy machine on the fringes of the top five but could not crack through the barrier. The finish ends a tough three-race stretch for McLaughlin as the series takes a two-week break before visiting the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course.
McLaughlin’s Thoughts: “Overall, pretty good day for the Sonsio Chevy. We started eighth and finished seventh. Nearly got sixth on the line. We’ve been chasing setup all weekend, but solid points day for us in seventh. We will just keep building from there. Onto Mid-Ohio. We have a couple of weeks off, we’ll be ok.”
No. 12 Verizon 5G Dallara/Chevrolet – Will Power
Laps Led: 0
Point Standings: 2nd (-27 pts)
Race Rundown: Will Power and the No. 12 Verizon Chevrolet team battled through adversity after an incident with the No. 29 car in the early stages of the Sonsio Grand Prix of Road America on Sunday afternoon. A necessary pit stop was the result, which included a complete front wing change and Power restarted at the tail of the field. In true “Power fashion,” the 2014 INDYCAR SERIES champion fought all day to regain those positions and ultimately salvaged a 19th place finish after a difficult set of opening laps at Elkhart Lake. The next race for the NTT INDYCAR SERIES will take place at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course, a circuit where Power won from the pole position in 2020.
Power’s Thoughts: “Yeah, no I haven’t seen (DeFrancesco). I mean, we had a fast car it’s just I kind of wondered if we changed tires when we were doing the wing. We didn’t want to go down a lap obviously. That made our day a lot harder. Yeah, nothing I could do about that one. That is Indy Car. Not the best day, you have them. Just move on to the next one. It was good on the team for at least, I got ran off on the last lap there so maybe we could have finished a little bit higher. We had plenty of push to pass, couldn’t do much about it. We’ll see if we can get the Verizon 5G Chevy to victory lane again this year. Anytime we get a victory in this series it’s so big, because it’s so hard.”