Josef Newgarden Laps The Field On Way To Firestone Indy Lights Win At New Hampshire

Discussion in 'IndyCar Headlines' started by John Kernan, Aug 14, 2011.

  1. From: www.indycar.com

    LOUDON, N.H. -- Pole sitter Josef Newgarden didn't have any issues controlling the race pace following a Lap 1 spin of Sam Schmidt Motorsports teammate Bryan Clauson's car exiting Turn 2.
    Following a Lap 69 caution for a spin of another teammate, Esteban Guerrieri, Newgarden didn't have any challengers for the remainder of the New Hampshire 100.

    By Lap 65, Newgarden had put all cars but the No. 7 Lucas Oil entry driven by Guerrieri a lap down on the 1.025-mile oval. Every other starter was a lap down following the Lap 72 restart after Guerrieri's spin in the grass exiting Turn 2.

    Newgarden went on to his fifth victory and increased his Firestone Indy Lights championship advantage over Guerrieri, who finished fifth, to 68 points with three races remaining.

    It was the second time in series history -- March 2004 at Phoenix by eventual champion Thiago Medeiros, interestingly in the No. 11 Sam Schmidt Motorsports car -- that a driver lapped the field.

    "This weekend turned out to be more than we thought it could be," said Newgarden, who didn't let up by posting his quickest race lap (144.701 mph) on Lap 93. "I’m very, very happy for the whole team. It’s unfortunate with what happened with Esteban; it’s tough to see that with a teammate. We’re pushing hard and we’re trying to win this championship. It’s not an easy job for either of us with the situation that we have.

    Jorge Goncalvez, who started a season-high fifth in the No. 4 Belardi Auto Racing Special, finished a season-best second (his eighth top 10 in 11 races).

    "This is a very competitive series with a group of talented drivers," he said. "I definitely like the short ovals and I had good results at Milwaukee (third) and now here. Team Belardi worked very hard to get my car ready for this race."

    Duarte Ferreira was third in the No. 28 Bryan Herta Autosport car -- also a season high -- and Gustavo Yacaman advanced seven positions to finish fourth in the No. 2 TMR-Tuvacol-Xtreme Coil Drilling car (his seventh top five of the season).

    "This was a very good day because this is my first season in the Firestone Indy Lights and I was able to achieve my goal of getting a podium," Ferreira said. "I am only 18 years old and this is a very competitive series to race in. I have finished in the top 10 seven times, but the team has put a lot of work into the cars and it is better."
    David Ostella finished sixth in the No. 16 Glo
    bal Precast Team Jensen car and Clauson recovered to finish seventh in the No. 77 Mazda Road to Indy/CURB Records car.

    Guerrieri's result was the seventh top-five finish; he won at Trois-Rivieres a week earlier.
    “At least we finished the race after a spin," he said. "Normally when you spin on an oval, you don’t finish the race. We saved some points. It was an interesting race. We had a similar pace with Josef and I was just waiting for traffic and we got side by side a couple of times and I had my chances.

    "Recovering to finish fifth was good. It wasn’t what I wanted, but it was good. There are three races left and still a lot to achieve.”

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