By means of robust pit technique and duels on late restarts, Josef Newgarden claimed his first win within the Acura Grand Prix of Lengthy Seashore of his IndyCar profession, whereas concurrently taking the championship lead within the course of.
“I’ve been attempting to win a race right here for eleven years,” Newgarden mentioned in victory lane. “I’m so blissful to lastly get it completed!”
Newgarden held off a hard-charging Romain Grosjean by on the ultimate restart with 5 laps to go, aided by a last warning for Takuma Sato ending up within the tyre barrier at flip eight thrown on the ultimate lap, to win his second-straight race and hold Staff Penske undefeated on the season. That is the primary time since 2012 that Penske has received the primary three races of the season. Newgarden’s victory additionally offers Penske the report for many wins by a group on the streets of Lengthy Seashore.
“We knew coming into the race we have now an excellent technique, we make good gas, with Staff Chevy, we’re going to be alright,” Newgarden continued.
“And I had the whole lot I wanted immediately.”
Colton Herta led the sphere to inexperienced and instantly blitzed from the pack, accumulating a two and a half second hole in lower than 5 laps. Simply as quick because the hole was constructed up it pale away, as the primary warning got here out for Dalton Kellett on lap six. Kellett overshot flip one, making vital contact with the tyre barrier on the exit of the nook.
After repairs have been accomplished, the race restarted on lap 10 and Herta wasted no time reclaiming his large lead. Additional within the pack, an exciting battle ensued on lap 21 for fourth place, as Felix Rosenqvist and Alexander Rossi battled for the place. Rossi dove to the within of Rosenqvist in flip one, making contact with the Swede and taking the spot as each continued on. Marcus Ericsson and Grosjean adopted Rossi by. Ericsson quickly obtained revenge for his fellow countryman taking fourth in flip six on lap 25, earlier than Grosjean took fifth from Rossi in flip one on lap 26.
Herta misplaced his lead within the first pit cease section, getting overcut by Newgarden after pitting on lap 29. One further lap was all it took for Newgarden, however each have been undercut by Alex Palou who pit on lap 27 and took the lead, conserving Newgarden second and forcing Herta to 3rd.
Palou dominated the stint like Herta earlier than him, up till his pit cease on lap 55. The very subsequent lap, Herta was scheduled to return in, however hit a significant bump within the braking zone going into flip 9, smashing the skin wall. A heartbreaking ending that absolutely introduced again painful recollections of the 2021 Music Metropolis Grand Prix, the quickest automotive all weekend ended up with a twenty-third place end.
Capable of get to the shortcut to pit lane, no warning was thrown for Herta, and Newgarden was in a position to get to pit lane on lap 57 and narrowly overcut Palou on pit exit. Palou made gutsy makes an attempt at Newgarden and his chilly tyres in turns 5 and 6, however Newgarden held on whereas his tyres obtained as much as temperature and maintained the lead.
Whereas Newgarden led, town of Lengthy Seashore shortly realized they’d be needing a brand new backyard after Simon Pagenaud spun into the flowerbed on the fountain to convey out the warning on lap 60. Battling with Sato, Pagenaud went side-by-side with the Japanese driver by the fountain part, did some landscaping, and ended up going through the unsuitable approach. The incident collected extra vehicles as Rinus VeeKay obtained rear-ended by Scott McLaughlin whereas the previous was slowing down resulting from Pagenaud.
This restart offered a chance for Grosjean, sitting fourth place as the one driver within the prime 5 on the softer alternate tyres. When the inexperienced flag flew with 19 laps to go, Grosjean hounded third-place Ericsson, who spun on the exit of flip 4. The Swede made it to an escape street in flip 5 so no warning was thrown, however he made slight contact along with his teammate Scott Dixon, who fortunately didn’t maintain injury.
This propelled Grosjean to 3rd place to search out Palou, which he did with 16 laps to go across the outdoors of the defending sequence champion with 16 laps to go. Grosjean stored the stress on Newgarden, however the American veteran held agency as Grosjean’s tyres pale. However a warning with ten laps to go for a crash involving Jimmie Johnson and David Malukas stacked the sphere and gave Grosjean one other likelihood.
Each Newgarden and Grosjean had unimaginable begins when the inexperienced flag flew with 5 laps to go, and Newgarden was in a position to efficiently block Grosjean on the skin of flip one. That proved to be the Frenchman’s final shot on the lead, as a warning flew on the ultimate lap with Sato within the boundaries, giving Newgarden the win.
Palou completed third, unable to maintain up with the 2 leaders on the ultimate restart, with Will Energy coming dwelling fourth to place two Penske vehicles within the prime 5.
Arrow McLaren SP lastly obtained the consequence they’ve been in search of, as Pato O’Ward got here dwelling fifth after beginning the race in eleventh. His teammate Rosenqvist fell down the order after the contact with Rossi and tyre degradation, ending eleventh.
Dixon had essentially the most spectacular leap of all, going off-strategy and pitting properly sooner than everybody else on each of his pit stops, propelling himself from sixteenth beginning place to complete sixth. A superb drive and technique name from considered one of IndyCar’s greatest ever.
Graham Rahal completed seventh after beginning thirteenth, a much-needed prime ten end for a Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing group that has struggled tremendously to start out the season. He completed forward of Rossi, who appears to have gotten a few of his mojo again with an eighth place end that may be a new season greatest for him, and greatest because the 2021 season finale at this very circuit.
Helio Castroneves got here dwelling ninth for Meyer Shank Racing with a quiet, optimistic efficiency, whereas rookie Kyle Kirkwood as soon as once more impresses with the primary top-ten end of his younger IndyCar profession in tenth place.
The subsequent race on the calendar is the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama, held at Barber Motorsports Park, on 01 Might.
Acura Grand Prix of Lengthy Seashore – Official Outcomes
|1||2||Josef Newgarden||USA||Staff Penske||1:46:48.010|
|2||28||Romain Grosjean||FRA||Andretti Autosport||+ 1.286 sec.|
|3||10||Alex Palou||ESP||Chip Ganassi Racing||+ 1.759 sec.|
|4||12||Will Energy||AUS||Staff Penske||+ 2.965 sec.|
|5||5||Pato O’Ward||MEX||Arrow McLaren SP||+ 3.712 sec.|
|6||9||Scott Dixon||NZL||Chip Ganassi Racing||+ 5.060 sec.|
|7||15||Graham Rahal||USA||Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing||+ 5.393 sec.|
|8||27||Alexander Rossi||USA||Andretti Autosport||+ 7.308 sec.|
|9||06||Helio Castroneves||BRA||Meyer Shank Racing||+ 8.952 sec.|
|10||14||Kyle Kirkwood (R)||USA||A.J. Foyt Enterprises||+ 12.863 sec.|
|11||7||Felix Rosenqvist||SWE||Arrow McLaren SP||+ 14.293 sec.|
|12||20||Conor Daly||USA||Ed Carpenter Racing||+ 15.217 sec.|
|13||21||Rinus VeeKay||NED||Ed Carpenter Racing||+ 16.246 sec.|
|14||3||Scott McLaughlin||NZL||Staff Penske||+ 17.929 sec.|
|15||45||Jack Harvey||GBR||Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing||+ 18.780 sec.|
|16||11||Tatiana Calderon (R)||COL||A.J. Foyt Enterprises||+ 1 lap|
|17||51||Takuma Sato||JPN||Dale Coyne Racing w/ Rick Ware Racing||+ 2 laps|
|18||30||Christian Lundgaard (R)||DEN||Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing||+ 2 laps|
|19||60||Simon Pagenaud||FRA||Meyer Shank Racing||+ 4 laps|
|20||48||Jimmie Johnson||USA||Chip Ganassi Racing||Crashed|
|21||18||David Malukas (R)||USA||Dale Coyne Racing w/ HMD Motorsports||Crashed|
|22||8||Marcus Ericsson||SWE||Chip Ganassi Racing||Crashed|
|23||26||Colton Herta||USA||Andretti Autosport||Crashed|
|24||77||Callum Ilott (R)||GBR||Juncos Hollinger Racing||Crashed|
|25||29||Devlin DeFrancesco (R)||CAN||Andretti Steinbrenner Autosport||Crashed|
|26||4||Dalton Kellett||CAN||A.J. Foyt Enterprises||Crashed|