Team Penske NTT INDYCAR SERIES Race Recap
Track: Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course
Race: Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio
Date: July 3, 2022
No. 2 PPG Dallara/Chevrolet – Josef Newgarden
Laps Led: 0
Point Standings: 3rd (-34 pts)
Race Rundown: Josef Newgarden and the No. 2 PPG Chevrolet team earned a hard fought, seventh-place finish in Sunday’s Indy 200 at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. Newgarden qualified in the 14th position after encountering slow traffic during the first round of qualifying on Saturday. Armed with knowledge from practice that he had a fast Chevrolet underneath him, Newgarden quickly moved into the top 10 following the drop of the green flag. Strong pit cycles also helped propel the two-time NTT INDYCAR SERIES champion through the field before settling into the seventh position at the checkered flag.
Newgarden’s Thoughts: “It wasn’t a great day or bad day either. At the first pit exchanges we really worked up to seventh or sixth place and then a couple of cautions came out. The final pit exchange we were looking to make something happen on new reds a yellow came out right after. Sometimes that helps you because it closes the pits, but they waited for everybody else to pit. We lost out to the blend line and ended up losing three spots in that exchange, which put us back to seventh. Just kind of bad luck all day with the way the yellows worked out. They weren’t really favoring our strategy but it’s good day for Scott (McLaughlin) and we’ll go to the next one.”
No. 3 Odyssey Battery Dallara/Chevrolet – Scott McLaughlin
Finish: 1st – Second career NTT INDYCAR SERIES victory and 50th Team Penske win
Laps Led: 45
Point Standings: 7th (-69 pts)
Race Rundown: Scott McLaughlin and the No. 3 Odyssey Battery Chevy team returned to their winning ways by taking the checkered flag in Sunday’s Indy 200 at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. McLaughlin becomes the second multiple NTT INDYCAR SERIES winner this year, joining teammate Josef Newgarden. A strong qualifying effort saw the second-year driver start the race from the second position, and he was able to take the lead following a strong pit stop by the No. 3 crew on lap 30. From there it was a duel between McLaughlin and Alex Palou, the defending series champion. With varying tires and seconds of overtake, McLaughlin was able to keep Palou at bay to score his 50th win with Team Penske, good for third on the all-time list.
McLaughlin’s Thoughts: “It’s amazing. I really wanted to get a win with mom and dad here. It was our first time we had Odyssey Battery on the car, and you know it was it was awesome as well to have them on board, but that mom and dad is very special on America’s weekend. Last night I was dressed up as a bald eagle, so maybe I need to do that every year on July 4th weekend. It was tough, you’re thinking about fuel but thankfully Chevy gave us the great fuel mileage and drivability off the restarts that allowed me to get a little bit of a gap from Palou and the Honda. I’m really proud of the guys for the car they gave me even though it was a little hard to drive towards the end. I would love to make it a little bit easier for myself but I’m super proud.”
No. 12 Verizon 5G Dallara/Chevrolet – Will Power
Laps Led: 0
Point Standings: 2nd (-20 pts)
Race Rundown: Will Power and the No. 12 Verizon Chevrolet team had the drive of the day in Sunday’s Indy 200 at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course, coming from a 21st-place qualifying position and a lap one spin to finish on the podium. Power was penalized his two fastest laps in qualifying when race officials deemed he impeded one of Helio Castroneves’ laps. In trying to pick his spots to be aggressive on a tight, technical course, Power placed his right-side tires too far on the curbing in Turn 9 on the first lap. The resulting spin dropped him to the rear of the field, but from there he drove in the same determined manner that has made him one of the NTT INDYCAR SERIES’ legends. Like his teammates, Power received outstanding work from his pit crew to propel him to a third-place finish to keep him in second in the championship battle.
Power’s Thoughts: “Amazing day for the Verizon 5G Chevy. I said in a strategy meeting, which I have a few times this year, we’ve qualified bad and a top-10 would be great. The yellow when we were 12th, I thought, OK, we can be in the top-10 here. Good restarts, good exchanges, good pit stops, good strategy. Great job by the team. Over the moon, loving it man. Starting at the back is more entertaining than leading at the front! We’ve got to get on top of the qualifying. It wasn’t a pace issue at all. I can’t thank Verizon and Chevy enough. We’re having such a great year.”