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RINUS VEEKAY NARROWLY MISSES ANOTHER TOP 10 FINISH AT MID-OHIO

Last Lap Pass Drops VeeKay to 11th; Conor Daly Runs Steady Race After Tough Qualifying, Finishes 16th

(LEXINGTON, Ohio) September 13, 2020 – Race 2 Notes

  • Ed Carpenter Racing drivers Rinus VeeKay and Conor Daly finished exactly where they started in today’s Race 2 of the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course doubleheader. VeeKay narrowly missed extending his streak of Top 10 finishes when a last-lap pass dropped him to 11th. Daly started and finished today’s Honda 200 in the 16th position.
  • Yesterday’s Race 1 of the doubleheader resulted in both VeeKay and Daly’s highest road course qualifying efforts of the season. VeeKay started 9th while Daly was up on the outside of the second row in 4th. Daly was running in the Top 10 until the final lap, when his car unexpectedly began to run out of fuel. Daly finished 13th while VeeKay brought home his third consecutive Top 10 with an 8th place.
  • It was a clean slate for today as Race 2 had it’s own qualifying session this morning. Heavy rains moved through the area and the track was still wet when qualifying began. The field was split into two groups and Daly was out first. A red flag flew just moments before he set his first quick lap that had him sitting third. The lap was invalidated and Daly had to start over. He was able to turn two laps at speed, narrowly missing a third lap by mere seconds. Many cars behind him did have time for an additional lap, dropping him down the order to 16th.
  • Multiple red flags caused delays to VeeKay’s group. The course had not remained green long enough for anyone to record a lap time and drivers were left with only three minutes and 36 seconds to set a quick time. VeeKay managed two laps, but the rain tires were so degraded by the second lap, he did not improve his speed. His fast lap would slot him into the 11th position on today’s starting grid.
  • The start of Race 2 was eventful with multiple cars off-course in the first few corners. Daly avoided the melee, but dropped to 19th. Nearly the entire field wound up on the same pit strategy when all but two cars stopped on Lap 15. Daly moved up as the two leaders made their stop, but settled back into his original starting position of 16th. His second pit stop on Lap 46 had him back in 18th, but again he cycled back into 16th. At the end of today’s 75-lap race, Daly brought home the No. 20 U.S. Air Force Chevrolet in the same position it started in.
  • VeeKay too avoided the opening lap mayhem and gained two positions, moving his No. 21 SONAX/Autogeek Chevrolet up to 9th. Pit stops on Laps 15 and 46 had VeeKay firmly in the Top 10. A spin by Scott Dixon placed him on an alternate pit strategy and with tires that were 12 laps fresher than VeeKay’s, the championship leader made the pass on the Dutch rookie with only a few corners to go. VeeKay finished 11th, also the position he started today’s race.
  • Next up for the NTT INDYCAR SERIES will be the Harvest Grand Prix, a new event for 2020 utilizing the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course. It too will be a doubleheader weekend with races taking place on both Friday, October 2 and Saturday, October 3. VeeKay and Daly have already completed one race at the IMS road course this year, which took place on the Fourth of July. Daly advanced to the second round of qualifying in that event and VeeKay earned his best road course finish and first career Top 5.

CONOR DALY, No. 20 U.S. Air Force Chevrolet, Finished 16th: “Today was tough in qualifying. We just didn’t get the right lap in at the right time and we just missed having another lap by a couple of seconds. Starting on the back foot, that’s hard. We took a gamble with the setup which was actually good for me to try. We were in the wrong place at the wrong time for everything that happened on track, it was a shame. However, there were some positives; yesterday, we qualified 4th which was really good. We are still learning together as a team, hopefully we can put what we learned here towards the Harvest Grand Prix.”

RINUS VEEKAY, No. 21 SONAX/Autogeek Chevrolet, Finished 11th: “That was a very tough race! Maybe because of the rainy conditions this morning, the track was different. My car felt nothing like yesterday! I had to dodge some cars at the start and did not really move forward like other guys did. It wasn’t the greatest race, but P11 is not terrible! We’ve got the Indy road course again – and again! I had my best road course finish there so I am ready to go back!”

RINUS VEEKAY TURNS BEST ROAD COURSE QUALIFYING INTO TOP 10 FINISH

Conor Daly Qualifies 4th at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course, Narrowly Misses Top 10 Result
(LEXINGTON, Ohio) September 12, 2020 – Race 1 Notes
Ed Carpenter Racing faced the first round of another NTT INDYCAR SERIES doubleheader today at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. Both Rinus VeeKay and Conor Daly earned their best starting positions at a road course race this season. VeeKay, locked in a battle for Rookie of the Year honors, parlayed his qualifying result into his third Top 10 finish in a row. Daly narrowly missed out on his own Top 10 as he had to coast home on the final lap, short on fuel. VeeKay finished 8th in Race 1 of the Honda 200 and Daly finished 13th. 

A 75-minute practice and a split-group qualifying session kicked off day one at Mid-Ohio. Daly finished the practice session 9th and VeeKay was 12th. The two were split into different groups for qualifying with VeeKay out first in Group 1. His best lap of 121.305 mph would land him 9th on the Race 1 starting grid, his career-best road course start. Daly followed in Group 2 and his lap of 121.550 mph placed him solidly in the 4th position. Like VeeKay, it was Daly’s best road course start of 2020 and matched ECR’s highest starting position this season.

Daly selected Firestone’s red alternate Firehawks for the start of Race 1 while VeeKay rolled off on primary black tires. Daly swapped positions with Ryan Hunter-Reay in the opening laps, then settled into 4th for the duration of his first stint. VeeKay was forced into a brief off-track excursion, but quickly re-entered the racing surface with no further issues. However, it did cost him several positions and the No. 21 SONAX/Autogeek Chevrolet slid back to 13th.

On the softer, faster red tire compound, Daly stayed out until Lap 20 when he made his first pit stop. As the cars that started on black tires cycled to the front, VeeKay moved up to 4th. The harder compound and longer-lasting black tires carried VeeKay seven laps more than Daly’s reds and VeeKay made his stop on Lap 27. After the 23-car field had made their first stops, Daly was 10th and VeeKay was 12th.

While Daly selected black tires for his second stint, VeeKay went with reds. VeeKay used the tires to his advantage, moving into the Top 10 with passes on Pato O’Ward and championship leader Scott Dixon. As the second and final round of pit stops began, Daly dove in on Lap 46. VeeKay stayed out for three more laps, ultimately cycling up to 2nd.  Both selected sticker black Firehawks for their final stint.

The teammates ended up on track next to each other with VeeKay running 9th and Daly in 10th. With two laps to go, the No. 20 U.S. Air Force Chevrolet unexpectedly began to run out of fuel. Daly backed off and was able to complete all 75 laps, but lost three positions at the end to finish 13th.

VeeKay wasn’t done moving forward in the closing laps. He gained another spot with a daring pass around the outside of Colton Herta, giving him the 8th position. VeeKay, who turned 20 yesterday, has finished in the Top 10 in the last three races. In addition to today’s 8th place, he also finished 6th and 4th in the World Wide Technology Raceway doubleheader two weeks ago.

Ed Carpenter Racing will return to the 2.258-mile road course first thing in the morning to finalize preparations for Race 2. There will not be a practice session tomorrow, but Daly and VeeKay will have another split-group qualifying session. Tomorrow’s 75-lap race will start at 1 p.m. ET and will be broadcast on NBC.
CONOR DALY, No. 20 U.S. Air Force Chevrolet, Finished 13th: “We had a really good start, got up to 3rd, which was nice! We struggled with the balance a little bit, but once we settled into 4th we held our position. It was tough to nail the times we needed on the out laps. Running out of fuel, these things happen sometimes. It was a shame because we would have been in the Top 10. Hopefully, we can work on some race pace for tomorrow and thankfully we have another day.”
RINUS VEEKAY, No. 21 SONAX/Autogeek Chevrolet, Finished 8th: “Good race! I struggled a little bit at the beginning to get around slower traffic. Once I figured it out, it was really enjoyable. It definitely wasn’t a perfect race, but I’m happy with what we made of it and the speed we had. I think we can do even better in qualifying tomorrow, which will make the race easier!”

ED CARPENTER RACING RETURNS TO ROAD COURSE RACING AT MID-OHIO

Conor Daly and Rinus VeeKay Take on Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course Doubleheader This Weekend

(INDIANAPOLIS) September 9, 2020 – Race Preview

  • After a swing of oval races, Ed Carpenter Racing returns to road course competition this weekend at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. Rinus VeeKay will spend his birthday weekend continuing his fight for the Rookie of the Year title on the heels of his career-best finish. Coming off two Top 10 finishes of his own in the last doubleheader, Conor Daly will settle back into his U.S. Air Force Chevrolet with ECR.
  • When the NTT INDYCAR SERIES adjusted the 2020 schedule, the Mid-Ohio race weekend was changed to feature two full-length, points-paying races in less than 24 hours. Originally scheduled for August 8-9, the Honda Indy 200 was recently moved to September 12-13. Yesterday, the Ohio Department of Health granted a spectator variance due in part to the venue’s unique, large outdoor facility. Attendance will be limited to 6,000 spectators, and social distancing and masks will be required in accordance with state health guidelines.
  • VeeKay will climb back into the No. 21 SONAX/Autogeek Chevrolet after his most successful race weekend to date. The NTT INDYCAR SERIES last raced at World Wide Technology Raceway in St. Louis two weeks ago. After finishing 6th in the first of the doubleheader events, the Dutchman finished 4th in the second. One week prior to securing his career-best finish, VeeKay started 4th in the Indianapolis 500. His qualifying effort was the highest of all Chevrolet-powered drivers and the best by a teenager in ‘500’ history.
  • Mid-Ohio will mark the first road course event for the NTT INDYCAR SERIES since the Road America doubleheader. As such, it will be Daly’s first time back in the No. 20 U.S. Air Force Chevrolet since mid-July. Daly steps into the No. 20 for the road and street course events while team owner Ed Carpenter drives in the oval races. As the COVID-19 pandemic has caused several NTT INDYCAR SERIES events to be cancelled or rescheduled, Carpenter competed in U.S. Air Force colors for the Iowa Speedway and WWT Raceway doubleheaders to make up for missed events. Daly drove for Carlin in those four events, earning his first career pole position at Iowa.
  • VeeKay, who will turn 20 on Friday, was signed as Ed Carpenter Racing’s full-time driver for 2020 on the heels of a successful test at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course last October. It was his second test with ECR and confirmed his compatibility with the team. Though this will be his first NTT INDYCAR SERIES weekend at Mid-Ohio, he is no stranger to doubleheaders at the 2.258-mile road course. Each Road to Indy event over the past three years featured two races in two days and VeeKay never finished off the podium. In 2018, he won both races on his way to his Indy Pro 2000 championship.
  • Daly has competed in the NTT INDYCAR SERIES race at Mid-Ohio three times in the past four years. He started 22nd in his 2016 debut but powered his way through the field. Daly finished 6th after leading 22 laps. He followed up that performance with another Top 10 finish in 2017. The 28-year-old will race for ECR in the final five races of the 2020 season, including the two this weekend at Mid-Ohio.
  • Saturday’s schedule will feature a 75-minute practice session, split qualifying groups and Race 1 of the Honda Indy 200. The race broadcast will begin at 4:30 p.m. ET on NBC Sports Network with the green flag scheduled for 5 p.m. ET. On Sunday, another split-group qualifying session will kick off the day. Race 2 will be broadcast on NBC, beginning at 1 p.m. ET, with the green flag five minutes later.

CONOR DALY, No. 20 U.S. Air Force Chevrolet: “I’ve always enjoyed going to Mid-Ohio, such a great track in the Midwest. I’ve had some reasonable success there, qualified decent and led some laps. It feels like forever since we’ve been to a road course so it will be nice to get back to that! Hopefully we’ll qualify up front, finish up front and get a lot of points.”

RINUS VEEKAY, No. 21 SONAX/Autogeek Chevrolet: “I’m very excited we’re finally going to Mid-Ohio! We’ve been waiting a while to find out if it was going happen. I had a very important test with Ed Carpenter Racing there last October. Good memories already with the team! Also, I have good memories in the Road to Indy where I never finished off the podium and have two wins. I love the track and the atmosphere around it. The season is getting close to the end now. We’ve had a few good races and it’s important to keep this momentum going!”

CAREER-BEST FINISH FOR RINUS VEEKAY AT WWT RACEWAY

CAREER-BEST FINISH FOR RINUS VEEKAY AT WWT RACEWAY
Dutch Teenager Finishes 4th in Race 2 of Bommarito 500; Ed Carpenter Concludes 2020 NTT INDYCAR SERIES Season

(MADISON, Ill.) August 30, 2020 – Race 2 Notes

  • Though Rinus VeeKay recorded his highest oval finish in an Indy car yesterday, he stepped up his performance even more today by earning the best result of his NTT INDYCAR SERIES career to date. The 19-year-old rookie finished 4th in Race 2 of the Bommarito Automotive Group 500 at World Wide Technology Raceway. Ed Carpenter relied on years of experience to manage an ill-handling race car around the 1.25-mile oval. Even with the difficult driving conditions, Ed Carpenter Racing’s team owner brought his car home cleanly in his final race of the 2020 season.
  • Today’s starting field was set by the second lap of a two-lap qualifying run yesterday. The first lap after the green flag set the field for Race 1, the first of the doubleheader events at WWT Raceway. The second lap – following the white flag – determined the field for today’s Race 2. Lap 2 for VeeKay placed him 18th on today’s grid and Carpenter rolled off 22nd.
  • Carpenter was collected in a multi-car incident on Lap 1 of Race 1 yesterday and the No. 20 U.S. Air Force Chevrolet suffered significant bodywork and suspension damage. After lengthy repairs, Carpenter briefly rejoined the event to confirm the car could race today. Despite the hard work by the team, the No. 20 did not handle the same as it did before Carpenter was hit. He managed the situation the best he could, keeping his nose clean and completing the race. He finished 21st in Race 2 of the Bommarito 500. As this was the final oval race scheduled for 2020, today marked the conclusion of Carpenter’s 18th season of NTT INDYCAR SERIES competition.
  • VeeKay started 14th in Race 1 and drove up to a 6th place finish, which was his highest finish on an oval until today. At the start of today’s 200-lap race, VeeKay went four-wide down the backstretch and gained seven positions in the first lap. Using the same strategy as yesterday, the No. 21 SONAX/Autogeek Chevrolet was the first car to make a pit stop and came in on Lap 41. The call shot him to the front of the field with the leaders and by Lap 60, VeeKay was running 3rd. He held the position until his second stop on Lap 95, when he began another charge through the field.
  • The Dutch teenager was 5th following his third and final pit stop, having been trapped behind lapped traffic. A spirited battle followed with Colton Herta and VeeKay was eventually able to make the pass. After dispatching another lapped car, VeeKay set his sights on Will Power. More lapped traffic came into play in the closing laps. After VeeKay worked his way through multiple cars, he remained 4th. The only caution flag of the day flew on Lap 197, solidifying VeeKay’s finishing position.
  • VeeKay’s previous best finish was 5th at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course on the Fourth of July. He now has 4th, 5th and 6th place finishes only nine races into his NTT INDYCAR SERIES career. His best qualifying position came last week in the Indianapolis 500 when he started 4th.
  • A doubleheader on the IMS road course on October 2 and 3 is the next scheduled event on the 2020 NTT INDYCAR SERIES calendar. However, a doubleheader event at Mid-Ohio Sport Car Course has yet to be rescheduled from its original date in early August. For the remainder of the season, VeeKay’s teammate will be Conor Daly. Daly races the No. 20 U.S. Air Force Chevrolet for the road and street course events, which make up the remainder of this year’s schedule.

ED CARPENTER, No. 20 U.S. Air Force Chevrolet, Finished 21st: “This was a really disappointing end to a very tough year. It was really only a couple of months since our first race was in June! It started off well there, but it has been a lot of bad luck since then. Today was just another tough day, the car wasn’t the same after we were hit at the start yesterday. There are still a few races left in 2020, so we’ll focus on Rinus and Conor and finish out the season strong as a team.”

RINUS VEEKAY, No. 21 SONAX/Autogeek Chevrolet, Finished 4th: “It was a great race, one of the best races I have ever driven! Yesterday, I started 14th and finished 6th so today, starting 18th, I was aiming for a Top 10 finish. I had an amazing first lap, got around a lot of guys. The strategy was brilliant, so shout out to my team for making this possible! Those last few laps were very tough, everyone was all over the place. Just missed out on the podium but that’s okay, P4 was the best I could do!”

RINUS VEEKAY EARNS HIS BEST OVAL FINISH WITH A 6TH PLACE AT WTT RACEWAY

VeeKay Also Highest Finishing Rookie; Ed Carpenter Eliminated by Lap 1 Contact for the Second Race in a Row

(MADISON, Ill.) August 29, 2020 – Race 1 Notes

  • When a caution flag flew midway through today’s Bommarito 500, Rinus VeeKay was trapped one lap behind the field. The 19-year-old used a combination of strategy and skillful driving to not only finish on the lead lap, but earn his best oval finish of the year. His 6th place was also the highest result by a rookie in today’s race. For the second week in a row, Ed Carpenter was caught in a Lap 1 incident not of his own making and essentially eliminated from contention. ECR’s team owner was credited with a 20th place finish.
  • Qualifying at World Wide Technology Raceway utilized a unique format which mimicked that from Iowa Speedway last month. While qualifying still consisted of two timed laps, the first lap after the green flag set the field for this afternoon’s Race 1 and the second lap – following the white flag – determined the field for Sunday’s Race 2. Lap 1 for VeeKay placed him 14th on today’s starting grid and Carpenter rolled off 17th.
  • In last Sunday’s Indianapolis 500, Carpenter was pushed up into the wall in between Turn 1 and 2 on the opening lap. The ensuing repairs cost him 12 laps and left him with a 26th place finish. Before he even reached the start/finish line on Lap 1 today, he was caught in a multi-car incident. Coming to the green flag, Oliver Askew struck the back of Simon Pagenaud, spinning Pagenaud into Alexander Rossi. Carpenter had almost cleared all the cars when Zach Veach struck Marco Andretti. Andretti’s car hit the rear of Carpenter’s No. 20, severely damaging the suspension. Carpenter was able to drive the car around the 1.25-mile oval and the crew immediately got to work on repairs.
  • VeeKay started on the outside of Pagenaud in the 14th position. When cars checked up on the start, VeeKay swung wide to the outside and avoided all contact. For the following restart, he picked up two more spots; by Lap 15, he was up to 9th. He was the first Top 10 car to pit, bringing the No. 21 SONAX/Autogeek Chevrolet in on Lap 49. The strategy call cycled him up to the 6th position. He was poised to cycle into 3rd following his second pit stop on Lap 97, but a Lap 108 yellow flag flew for moisture trapped him one lap behind the field.
  • After lengthy repairs to the No. 20 U.S. Air Force Chevrolet, Carpenter briefly rejoined the race. As there is no additional track time before Race 2, the laps were invaluable. Once it was confirmed the car could race tomorrow, Carpenter brought it back in for the day so the team could complete bodywork repairs. He finished 20th, having only completed three laps of today’s 200-lap event.
  • During the caution, VeeKay stayed out as the leaders made pit stops and was placed back on the lead lap. By not pitting with the other cars that received a wave around, he moved from 14th to 11th. Two laps after the Lap 121 restart, he was up to 8th. Because he did not stop under the caution, he was early to pit again. His final stop came on Lap 149, dropping him to 15th and one lap down once again. However, the race stayed green this time. When the race leader stopped Lap 175, VeeKay was solidly in the 6th position. He was able to hold the spot throughout the closing laps, recording his best oval finish of his rookie season.
  • Carpenter and VeeKay will race again tomorrow as the Bommarito 500 is a doubleheader event. Sunday’s race will also feature 200 laps, beginning at the same time. NBC Sports Network will have live coverage from WWT Raceway starting at 3 p.m. ET (2 p.m. local). 

ED CARPENTER, No. 20 U.S. Air Force Chevrolet, Finished 20th: “I am pretty bummed out. Second race in a row that I’ve been representing one of the Forces, the U.S. Air Force this weekend. I was basically out of the race before it started, also for the second race in a row. Zach Veach is the current theme right now. He obviously didn’t see the yellow flag or the bright yellow car spinning on the track.”

RINUS VEEKAY, No. 21 SONAX/Autogeek Chevrolet, Finished 6th: “Stellar race! We were on our way to the podium I think, but that yellow kind of screwed me. I kept my chin up and had a great car to make passes with! The No. 21 SONAX Chevrolet was great in the second lane when there were no marbles. I’ve learned luck really isn’t our thing, but we did the best we could with the circumstances. It did get a little sketchy on the last run, I almost lost it a few times! It was 200 laps of experience today and some good points. I’m very happy and I am looking forward to tomorrow!” 

ED CARPENTER RACING READY TO REBOUND AT WWT RACEWAY

Following Tough Indy 500, ECR Excited to Return to the Site of Most Recent Podium Finish

INDIANAPOLIS (August 27, 2020) – Race Preview

  • After a tough Indianapolis 500 last Sunday, Ed Carpenter Racing is eager to get back to the track to turn things around. A doubleheader weekend at World Wide Technology Raceway awaits, providing drivers Ed Carpenter and Rinus VeeKay two opportunities to rebound. Carpenter will be returning to the site of his most recent podium finish as he took the checkered flag in second place last year. VeeKay is a two-time podium finisher in Road to Indy races at the oval just minutes outside of St. Louis.
  • ECR is looking to bounce back after a tough Indy 500 just five days ago. VeeKay qualified 4th, the best qualifying result by a teenager in Indianapolis 500 history. He raced his way back through the field following a pit lane incident, but remained one lap behind the leaders and finished 20th. On the very first of 200 laps, another competitor pushed up into Carpenter. The ensuing repairs would cost ECR’s team owner 13 laps, but he used years of experience to drive a clean race the rest of the day and finished 26th. Coming to a restart near the midway point of the race, Conor Daly’s car got away from him and spun across the track, striking the inside wall. He was credited with a 29th place finish.
  • WWT Raceway is currently the last oval event on the 2020 NTT INDYCAR SERIES schedule. As Carpenter competes exclusively in the oval races, the twin Bommarito Automotive Group 500s will mark the conclusion of his 18th season of Indy car competition. Last year, Carpenter ended his season in style, working his way through the entire field to finish second. Coming to the checkered flag, Carpenter sent his No. 20 to the outside of Takuma Sato and trailed him to the line by only .0399 of a second. The margin was the closest of the 2019 NTT IndyCar Series season and in the 10-year history of Indy car racing at WWT Raceway.
  • While VeeKay has not yet been on the 1.25-mile oval in an NTT INDYCAR SERIES car, he has raced at WWT Raceway as part of the Road to Indy. He won the Pro Mazda race in 2018, a victory that was one of seven he collected on his way to winning the championship. Last year, he finished runner up, a result that would ultimately mirror his finish in the 2019 Indy Lights standings. The 19-year-old rookie’s first short oval races in his No. 21 SONAX/Autogeek Chevrolet came at last month’s doubleheader at Iowa Speedway.
  • ECR’s No. 20 entry is split between Daly on the road and street courses and Carpenter on the ovals. Daly’s U.S. Air Force Chevrolet was scheduled to be in 13 of 17 events this year, but several of those races have been rescheduled or cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. To make up for events that were missed, the No. 20 will be painted in U.S. Air Force colors this weekend while Carpenter is behind the wheel.
  • Carpenter and VeeKay will race on both Saturday and Sunday afternoon; both 200-lap races will be broadcast live on NBC Sports Network beginning at 3 p.m. ET (2 p.m. local). Saturday morning’s qualifying session will determine the starting grid for both events. The first lap after the green flag will set the field for Race 1 and the second lap – following the white flag – will determine order for Race 2. WWT Raceway will welcome a limited number of fans for the Bommarito Automotive Group 500 Mega Weekend.

ED CARPENTER, No. 20 U.S. Air Force Chevrolet: “After a tough Indy 500, I am happy to be able to climb back aboard the No. 20 Chevrolet this weekend and return to WWT Raceway. We plan to pick up where we left off last year and once again finish my season on the podium!”

RINUS VEEKAY, No. 21 SONAX/Autogeek Chevrolet: “WWT Raceway coming up next! The Indy 500 was really tough for the whole team but only three more days until we are on track again turning left. I’m really looking forward to Gateway. Last year, ECR showed they have good cars and are capable of good finishes there. I’ve won a race there too, so it’s a good combination! I cannot wait to get out there for two races.”

ED CARPENTER RACING BEGINS COUNTDOWN TO 2021 INDIANAPOLIS 500

Tough 2020 Edition of the 500-Mile Race Leaves ECR Waiting for Another Chance

NDIANAPOLIS (August 24, 2020) – Indianapolis 500 Race Notes

  • The countdown for next year’s Indianapolis 500 is already on for Ed Carpenter Racing as yesterday’s 500-mile race left the team hungry for more. ECR expanded from its traditiona two-car lineup to three for the Indy 500, but Ed Carpenter, Conor Daly and Rinus VeeKay each faced their own set of struggles. Carpenter and VeeKay were able to take the checkered flag after early struggles while Daly’s race ended early.
  • On the very first of 200 laps, another competitor pushed up into Carpenter, causing him to brush the wall in between Turns 1 and 2. He brought the No. 20 U.S. Space Force Chevrolet into the pit lane for what would be lengthy repairs. After a front wing change and new right-side suspension pieces, Carpenter rejoined the race on Lap 14. He used 17 years of Indianapolis 500 experience to drive a clean race the rest of the day, collecting positions as other cars fell out. At the end of 500 miles, Carpenter had climbed up to 26th. 
  • VeeKay qualified 4th, the fastest rookie in the field with the best qualifying result by a teenager in Indianapolis 500 history. Once the first round of stops had been completed, VeeKay had raced his way up to the 3rd position. However, he would be the next to face adversity. He lost control of the car coming in for his second pit stop, locking up his inside front and sliding into his No. 21 SONAX/Autogeek Chevrolet crew members. All seven over-the-wall team members rallied to complete the stop, but then the car stalled on exit. Once VeeKay served a stop-and-hold penalty for striking personnel, he was two laps down. VeeKay raced his way back up through the field, but he remained one lap behind the leaders. He would finish his debut Indianapolis 500 in the 20th position. 
  • Daly would not escape disappointment, either. While he fought the balance of the car in the opening stints, the No. 47 U.S. Air Force Chevrolet crew worked to improve the car on each pit stop. Coming to a restart on Lap 91, the car got away from Daly and spun across the track coming out of Turn 4. He struck the inside wall, ending his day. He was credited with a 29th place finish. 
  • Just a few miles north of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, the Ed Carpenter Racing team has returned to their race shop today to prepare the cars for this weekend’s doubleheader event at WWT Raceway. Carpenter and VeeKay will race on both Saturday, August 29 and Sunday, August 30. While the Indianapolis 500 was forced to run without spectators, WWT Raceway will welcome a limited number of fans for the Bommarito Automotive Group 500 Mega Weekend.

ED CARPENTER, No. 20 U.S. Space Force Chevrolet, Finished 26th: “Not the day we were hoping for. Our day ended after one corner. I don’t know that I could have done anything different, it didn’t feel like that aggressive of a move on my part. Evidently, the other driver’s spotter cleared him, which is crazy to me. Is it 2021 yet? 2020 is being a tough year right now. I am happy everyone is okay, I know Spencer (Pigot) took a big lick. A couple of our crew guys got whacked in the pits too, so I am also thinking about them. I am terribly disappointed that we weren’t able to show better for the U.S. Space Force and the U.S. Air Force. We wanted to do so much more, but that’s racing sometimes.”

RINUS VEEKAY, No. 21 SONAX/Autogeek Chevrolet, Finished 20th: “Of course, everything was new to me and I didn’t want to take too much risk at the start. But we were running third! The team was doing an amazing job. The second pit stop, I came into the box and just hit the brakes a little too hard. I locked up my inside front and my biggest nightmare happened. I hit the crew guys, they work day and night for me so I feel terrible. I will make sure to apologize to everyone. I made one mistake, but it was a big one. Pit stops are something I’m not as familiar with yet, but that’s not an excuse. We had a great car. It got better and better and I was able to pass cars on the inside and the outside. I learned a lot, but not fully in a good way. I just want to thank the team for giving me such an amazing car, but I threw the race away. I feel bad that my teammates Ed and Conor had a tough race, too. There were a lot of bad crashes and I am glad Spencer (Pigot) is fine.”

CONOR DALY, No. 47 U.S. Air Force Chevrolet, Finished 29th: “I’m not entirely sure what happened. We were having a good run and it suddenly felt like my left front tire felt into a hole. It was very strange. I thought I had it saved and it was a shame to see Oliver (Askew) hit the wall as well. My mistake and I am just looking forward to Gateway now. I am so thankful for the U.S. Air Force. They are the most incredible partner I’ve ever had and I hate this for them.”

ED CARPENTER RACING PREPARED FOR THE 104TH RUNNING OF THE INDIANAPOLIS 500

ECR Drivers Ed Carpenter, Conor Daly and Rinus VeeKay Focused on Tomorrow’s 500-Mile Race

INDIANAPOLIS (August 22, 2020) – Indianapolis 500 Preview

  • The next time Ed Carpenter Racing’s three Chevrolet-powered NTT INDYCAR SERIES cars take to the famed Indianapolis Motor Speedway oval, it will be for the 104th Running of the Indianapolis 500. Rinus VeeKay, the fastest rookie in the field, claimed the 4th starting position for his first 500-mile race. Team owner Ed Carpenter is one of the most experienced drivers in Sunday’s field as he will start his 17th Indy from the inside of Row 6. ECR has expanded to three cars for the Indianapolis 500 and Conor Daly will roll off from the outside of Row 6.
  • The 2020 Indianapolis 500 was originally scheduled to run on May 24 in the traditional Memorial Weekend date. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it will be run this Sunday, August 23. Following careful consideration and extensive consultation with state and city leadership, the decision was made to hold the race without spectators. NBC will carry the race day broadcast, beginning with a 90-minute pre-race show at 1 p.m. ET., followed by race coverage from 2:30-6 p.m. ET. Additionally, the television blackout for Indianapolis-area residents has been lifted and local fans will be able to watch live on WTHR-13.

ED CARPENTER, No. 20 U.S. Space Force Chevrolet, Starting 16th: “It’s finally here! It’s time to race. We definitely have some work cut out for us with where we are starting. It’s going to take a lot of hard work with a balance of aggression and patience. Passing is possible, but it is a lot harder in the past. We’re going to have to be opportunistic. I am still confident that we’ll find our way to the front, but it’s going to be a battle out there. I am looking forward to the drop of the green, getting everyone on equal footing, on the same tires and running full stints. We’ll see where we are in the U.S. Space Force Chevrolet!”

  • Qualifications for the Indianapolis 500 were held last weekend. On Saturday, Carpenter had to wait until the middle of the day to make his first run. His first four-lap average of 229.811 mph had him provisionally 20th on the grid. A few hours later, the 39-year-old returned to the track for a second attempt. He improved to 230.211 mph, which will have him starting tomorrow’s 500-mile race from the 16th position. Carpenter has turned 400 laps of practice, exactly twice the race distance.
  • Earlier this week, Carpenter had the opportunity to fly with the world-renowned U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds. Thursday morning, Carpenter took to the skies over central Indiana with Thunderbird 8 Advanced Pilot and Narrator, Major Jason Markzon. Officially known as the U.S. Air Force Air Demonstration Squadron, the F-16 Fighting Falcons are in Indianapolis to perform the pre-race flyover on Sunday. 
  • Carpenter is the only individual in the NTT INDYCAR SERIES who handles both the responsibility of driving and owning his own team. He will be one of the most experienced drivers in the field as he has qualified for his 17th Indy 500. The Indianapolis native solidified his status as a hometown favorite by winning the pole position in 2013 and 2014; in 2018, he became just the 10th driver to collect three or more Indy 500 poles in the century-plus history of the race. Two of his strongest results have come the past two years, including a runner-up after leading the most laps in 2018. Carpenter now competes exclusively in the oval events, beginning his 18th season of Indy car competition with a Top 5 finish at Texas Motor Speedway in June. 
  • The No. 20 Chevrolet features the U.S. Space Force, the newest branch of the United States military. Earlier this month, Carpenter joined Gen. John W. “Jay” Raymond, Chief of Space Operations, live on FOX and Friends to announce the partnership. The U.S. Space Force became the sixth branch of the Department of Defense when it was signed into law on December 20, 2019. Its mission is to protect the interests of the United States in space; deter aggression in, from and to space; and conduct space operations. Similar to the branches of the military which are dedicated to protecting and securing the air, land, and sea, the U.S. Space Force focuses singularly on space.

RINUS VEEKAY, No. 21 SONAX/Autogeek Chevrolet, Starting 4th: “We have a really strong car going into the race. I found out that passing is going to be tough. Track position is going to be important, but I think have the right people around to guide me through the race. With this car, we have a shot at winning! That’s a lot to say as a rookie, but it’s exciting!”

  • VeeKay has turned 377 practice laps – his first in an Indy car around the 2.5-mile oval. The rookie put ECR in the Fast Nine Shootout for the fifth time in as many years after last Saturday’s Day 1 of qualifications. As one of the nine quickest drivers in the 33-car field, he was able to make a run at the Indianapolis 500 pole position on Sunday. His four-lap average of 230.704 mph held as the 4th fastest, granting the 19-year-old a starting position on the inside of the second row. 
  • By starting 4th, VeeKay has recorded the best qualifying result for a teenager in Indianapolis 500 history. The only Chevrolet-powered driver in the Fast Nine Shootout was also the fastest rookie in the field. He was honored by the American Dairy Association Indiana as recipient of the 46th annual Fastest Rookie of the Year Award on Tuesday of this week. 
  • Years of preparation will culminate on Sunday as VeeKay competes in his first Indianapolis 500. Born in Hoofddorp, Netherlands, Rinus van Kalmthout began karting in 2009 at the age of 8. With sights set firmly on the pinnacle of North American open wheel racing, he transitioned to the Road to Indy in 2017 and launched his U.S. career driving as Rinus VeeKay. The 2020 Indianapolis 500 will only be VeeKay’s seventh NTT INDYCAR SERIES race. He made his debut at Texas Motor Speedway in June and followed that up with his first career Top 5 finish at the IMS road course in July.
  • VeeKay’s No. 21 is carrying the colors of both Autogeek.com and SONAX USA for this year’s Indy 500. Over the last 15 years, car care superstore Autogeek has risen to become one of the most reputable and trusted sources for automotive detailing products and accessories. As one of the United States’ largest distributors of European-made car care products, Autogeek was chosen by SONAX USA to be one of a few select U.S. retailers. Made in Germany, SONAX is a market leader in car care products, offering a highly competitive and extensive range of products for the cleaning and care of vehicles.

CONOR DALY, No. 47 U.S. Air Force Chevrolet, Starting 18th: “I am definitely excited for the race. This is what we work all of these days for. The guys have done a good job putting together the U.S. Air Force Chevrolet. Hopefully, we can put all the right pieces together for a long 500 miles. We’ll see what happens in the end!”

  • Daly turned the second-fastest practice lap of the month at 232.337 mph. In all, he completed 413 laps of practice across six days. Like Carpenter, Daly made to make his first qualifying run in the heat of the day last Saturday. The 28-year-old’s average speed over four laps was 229.884 mph, but he too made a second run. Daly increased his four-lap average to 229.955 mph on his second run, which moved him up to 18th on the starting grid. While Carpenter will be on the inside of Row 6, Daly will start on the outside of the same row. 
  • Daly is another hometown favorite as he was born and raised in nearby Noblesville, Ind. The 2020 Indianapolis 500 will be Daly’s 7th and will come on the heels of his most successful Month of May to date. Last year, he set the fastest lap all practice sessions earning career-best “500” finish of 10th. In addition to stepping into ECR’s third entry for the Indianapolis 500, Daly drives ECR’s No. 20 in the road and street course events and Carlin’s No. 59 entry in the remaining oval events. Daly captured his first NTT INDYCAR SERIES pole position last month at Iowa Speedway. 
  • Ed Carpenter Racing is proud to represent two branches of the United States Armed Forces as Daly races the U.S. Air Force Chevrolet. For the third consecutive year, Daly will represent the U.S. Air Force in the Indianapolis 500. The No. 47 was selected for Daly’s car with double significance. The U.S. Air Force was officially founded on September 18, 1947 with the passage of the National Security Act of 1947. Less than a month later, on October 14, 1947, an experimental U.S. Air Force rocket plane became the first crewed aircraft to exceed the speed of sound. The Bell X-1 was painted bright orange so it could be seen in test flights and reached Mach 1.06 (700 mph) at an altitude of 43,000 feet over the Mojave Desert in California. 

RINUS VEEKAY QUALIFIES 4TH FOR THE 2020 INDIANAPOLIS 500

Dutch Teenager is the Fastest Rookie in the Field; Ed Carpenter and Conor Daly Will Start Next Sunday’s 500-Mile Race From Row 6

INDIANAPOLIS (August 16, 2020) – Indianapolis 500 Qualifying Notes

  • The youngest driver in the 2020 Indianapolis 500 is also the fastest rookie in the field as Ed Carpenter Racing’s Rinus VeeKay has qualified 4th for next weekend’s 500-mile classic. Teammates and hometown favorites Ed Carpenter and Conor Daly locked in their starting positions yesterday and will begin the race from the same row. Carpenter will be on the inside of Row 6 he qualified 16th and Daly will be on the outside in the 18th starting spot. The 2020 Indianapolis 500 will take place next Sunday, August 23. It will be shown live on NBC with coverage beginning at 1 p.m. ET. 

RINUS VEEKAY, No. 21 SONAX/Autogeek Chevrolet, Qualified 4th: “I feel great! That was the most amazing qualifying, I did not expect it! I was really happy to even make it to the Fast Nine. Being the only Chevy made it tough, but we are starting fourth! Super close to making the front row, but I’m still happy with this. And fastest rookie! Ed (Carpenter) really helped me, telling me what the wind was going to do to my car. I’ve never driven in wind like this at this track. He really helped me to be confident!”

  • VeeKay put ECR in the Fast Nine Shootout for the Indianapolis 500 pole position for the fifth time in as many years after Day 1 of qualifications. He was the first of ECR’s three cars to make an attempt on Saturday after a blind draw set the order and was the fourth car to take to the 2.5-mile oval. The 19-year-old’s very first run resulted in a four-lap average of 231.114 mph. At the end of the day, the speed of his No. 21 SONAX/Autogeek Chevrolet held as the 6th fastest. 
  • Positions 1-9 at the end of Saturday advanced to today’s Fast Nine Shootout. The cars were inverted, with yesterday’s fastest qualifier going out last today. VeeKay was again the fourth car to take to the track. He was undeterred by the windiest conditions of the week, setting a four-lap average of 230.704 mph. After all nine cars made run, VeeKay’s No. 21 was 4th on the pylon, the best qualifying result for a teenager in Indianapolis 500 history. The fastest rookie in the 33-car field was also the only Chevrolet-powered driver in the Fast Nine.
  • Years of preparation will culminate next weekend as VeeKay competes in his first Indianapolis 500. Born in Hoofddorp, Netherlands, Rinus van Kalmthout began karting in 2009 at the age of 8. With sights set firmly on the pinnacle of North American open wheel racing, he transitioned to the Road to Indy in 2017 and launched his U.S. career driving as Rinus VeeKay. The 2020 Indianapolis 500 will only be VeeKay’s seventh NTT INDYCAR SERIES race. He made his debut at Texas Motor Speedway in June and followed that up with his first career Top 5 finish at the IMS road course in July.
  • VeeKay’s No. 21 is carrying the colors of both Autogeek.com and SONAX USA for this year’s Indy 500. Over the last 15 years, car care superstore Autogeek has risen to become one of the most reputable and trusted sources for automotive detailing products and accessories. As one of the United States’ largest distributors of European-made car care products, Autogeek was chosen by SONAX USA to be one of a few select U.S. retailers. Made in Germany, SONAX is a market leader in car care products, offering a highly competitive and extensive range of products for the cleaning and care of vehicles.

ED CARPENTER, No. 20 U.S. Space Force Chevrolet, Qualified 16th: “This has been a weekend of mixed emotions! I’m very happy for Rinus and the ECR team for once again prepping fast cars, at least we had one car in the Fast Nine Shootout. Chevrolet gave us great power yesterday and we had a chance! We gave it all we had. I was really hoping to have the U.S. Space Force car up there, but this is the Indy 500 and you can win from anywhere! That’s still the mission.”

  • Carpenter’s starting position was set on Saturday. He had to wait until the middle of the day yesterday to make his first run as he was the 19th car out to qualify. His first four-lap average of 229.811 mph had him provisionally 20th on the grid. A few hours later, he returned to the track for a second attempt. He improved to 230.211 mph, which moved him up to 15th. However, in the final minutes of qualifying, Carpenter was bumped down one spot. As positions 10-33 were locked in at the end of Saturday’s qualifications, the 39-year-old will start next Sunday’s 500-mile race from the 16th position.
  • Carpenter is the only individual in the NTT INDYCAR SERIES who handles both the responsibility of driving and owning his own team. He will be one of the most experienced drivers in next Sunday’s field as he has now qualified for his 17th Indy 500. The Indianapolis native solidified his status as a hometown favorite by winning the pole position in 2013 and 2014; in 2018, he became just the 10th driver to collect three or more Indy 500 poles in the century-plus history of the race. Two of his strongest results have come the past two years, including a runner-up after leading the most laps in 2018. Carpenter now competes exclusively in the oval events, beginning his 18th season of Indy car competition with a Top 5 finish at Texas Motor Speedway in June. 
  • The No. 20 Chevrolet features the U.S. Space Force, the newest branch of the United States military. Carpenter joined Gen. John W. “Jay” Raymond, Chief of Space Operations, last week on FOX and Friends to announce the partnership. The U.S. Space Force became the sixth branch of the Department of Defense when it was signed into law on December 20, 2019. Its mission is to protect the interests of the United States in space; deter aggression in, from and to space; and conduct space operations. Similar to the branches of the military which are dedicated to protecting and securing the air, land, and sea, the U.S. Space Force focuses singularly on space. 

CONOR DALY, No. 47 U.S. Air Force Chevrolet, Qualified 18th: “Not the qualifying we wanted to have! After Friday, we knew our car was a challenge to drive in the heat. The time of day where we drew to qualify was quite hot. I had a bit of a loose moment on the last lap, which really didn’t help the four-lap average. We went out later in the day and improved a little bit, but it was just really challenging in the heat. We know the U.S. Air Force Chevy is a going to be a good racecar, though. Ed (Carpenter) and I are starting from the same row and we can definitely move forward from there.”

  • Daly rolled out for his first qualification attempt moments after Carpenter did yesterday as he was the 25th driver in line. The 28-year-old’s average speed over four laps was 229.884 mph, which had him 19th overall. He too made a second run later in the day, increasing his average speed to 229.955 mph. He moved up to 17th on the grid, but the same late run that dropped Carpenter a position also affected Daly. He will start on Row 6, same as Carpenter, from the 18th position.
  • Daly is another hometown favorite as he was born and raised in nearby Noblesville, Ind. The 2020 Indianapolis 500 will be Daly’s 7th and will come on the heels of his most successful Month of May to date. Last year, he set the fastest lap all practice sessions earning career-best “500” finish of 10th. In addition to stepping into ECR’s third entry for the Indianapolis 500, Daly drives ECR’s No. 20 in the road and street course events and Carlin’s No. 59 entry in the remaining oval events. Daly captured his first NTT INDYCAR SERIES pole position last month at Iowa Speedway. 
  • Ed Carpenter Racing is proud to represent two branches of the United States Armed Forces as Daly races the U.S. Air Force Chevrolet. For the third consecutive year, Daly will represent the U.S. Air Force in the Indianapolis 500. The No. 47 was selected for Daly’s car with double significance. The U.S. Air Force was officially founded on September 18, 1947 with the passage of the National Security Act of 1947. Less than a month later, on October 14, 1947, an experimental U.S. Air Force rocket plane became the first crewed aircraft to exceed the speed of sound. The Bell X-1 was painted bright orange so it could be seen in test flights and reached Mach 1.06 (700 mph) at an altitude of 43,000 feet over the Mojave Desert in California. 

U.S. SPACE FORCE JOINS ED CARPENTER RACING FOR THE INDIANAPOLIS 500

(WASHINGTON, D.C.) August 7, 2020 – The U.S. Space Force announced a partnership with Ed Carpenter Racing this morning on FOX & Friends. Gen. John W. “Jay” Raymond, Chief of Space Operations unveiled the No. 20 U.S. Space Force Chevrolet with driver and team owner Ed Carpenter. The three-time Indianapolis 500 pole winner will carry the colors of the U.S.’s new military branch in this year’s 500-mile race, scheduled for August 23, 2020. Through ‘The Greatest Spectacle in Racing,’ Carpenter and ECR will build awareness of the U.S. Space Force in race fans and Americans all over the country.


The U.S. Space Force became the sixth branch of the Department of Defense when it was signed into law on December 20, 2019. The mission of the U.S. Space Force is to protect the interests of the United States in space; deter aggression in, from and to space; and conduct space operations. Similar to the branches of the military which are dedicated to protecting and securing the air, land, and sea, the U.S. Space Force focuses singularly on space.
“The U.S. Space Force’s involvement with the Indy 500 is centered around our organizations’ shared principles of STEM, teamwork, speed and competition,” said Maj. Jason Wyche, Chief of Air Force and Space Force Recruiting National Events Marketing Branch. “Additionally, the partnership gives the U.S. Space Force the ability to reach a large number of prospects and influencers through the far-reaching broadcast viewership and media coverage both for and leading up to the race.”


While Carpenter now races exclusively in the oval events, he is one of the most experienced drivers in the NTT INDYCAR SERIES with 184 career starts to date. He began his 18th season of Indy car competition with a Top 5 finish at Texas Motor Speedway in June. Carpenter, an Indianapolis native, has started on the front row of the Indianapolis 500 five of the past seven years. He solidified his status as a hometown favorite by winning the pole position in 2013 and 2014; in 2018, he became just the 10th driver to collect three or more Indy 500 poles in the century-plus history of the race. Of Carpenter’s 16 Indianapolis 500 starts, two of his strongest results have come the past two years, including a runner-up after leading the most laps in 2018.


Carpenter is thrilled to have the opportunity race on behalf of the U.S. Space Force. “This is such an exciting day, unveiling this beautiful U.S. Space Force Chevrolet that I will drive in the Indianapolis 500 on August 23! To be able to represent the men and women of the U.S.’s newest military branch is truly an honor,” proclaimed Carpenter. He continued, “Even though we are not running the ‘500’ on Memorial Day weekend this year, the event has such a strong connection to our Armed Forces and there’s no better way to showcase the brand new U.S. Space Force!”
The U.S. Space Force will organize, train, and equip agile, lean and forward-looking space professionals to defend our nation, allies, and American interests in space. By creating separate service with a dedicated purpose, the United States will maintain an advantage as space becomes more crowded and contested. Approximately 16,000 military and civilians from the former U.S. Air Force Space Command are now assigned to the U.S. Space Force and 6,000 active-duty Airmen will be transferring to the branch.


Just two weeks ago, the U.S. Space Force released its logo and motto, both of which are featured prominently on Carpenter’s No. 20. First used in 1961, the Delta symbol honors the heritage of the U.S. Air Force and Space Command. The silver outer border of the Delta signifies defense and protection from all adversaries and threats from the space domain. In the center of the Delta is the star Polaris, which symbolizes how the core values guide the mission. The U.S. Space Force motto, ‘Semper Supra’ (Always Above), represents the service’s role in establishing, maintaining and preserving U.S. freedom of operations in the space domain.


Carpenter is the only individual in the NTT INDYCAR SERIES who handles both the responsibility of driving and owning his own team. Founded in 2012, Carpenter’s eponymous team has two full-time entries and expands to three cars for the Indianapolis 500. The 39-year-old will compete alongside fellow Hoosier Conor Daly and Dutch rookie Rinus VeeKay. ECR will be representing two branches of the United States military as Daly races for the U.S. Air Force. The 28-year-old’s special edition No. 47 U.S. Air Force Chevrolet pays homage to the founding year of the U.S. Air Force and one of its most iconic aircraft, the Bell X-1. VeeKay, 19, will be competing in his first Indianapolis 500 in the team’s No. 21 entry. 


The 2020 Indianapolis 500 was originally slated for May 24 but was rescheduled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. After careful consideration and extensive consultation with state and city leadership, the decision has been made to hold the race on August 23 without spectators. All on-track action from the Indianapolis Motor Speedway can be viewed via NBC Sports Gold, NBCSN or NBC. The 2.5-mile oval will open for practice on Wednesday, August 12 and continue throughout the week. Qualifications will be held on Saturday, August 15 and Sunday, August 16. The 104th Running of the Indianapolis 500 will begin at 2:30 p.m. ET on Sunday, August 23 with a live broadcast on NBC.

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