Engine changes will force the Earnhardt-Ganassi Racing duo of Jamie McMurray and Juan Pablo Montoya to go to the rear of the field to start today’s Kobalt Tools 400 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. Both EGR drivers are powered by Hendrick Motorsports engines.
This morning, Mark Garrow of PRN Radio (which covers events at Speedway Motorsports, Inc.-affiliated tracks such as LVMS) tweeted that on Friday, both the No. 1 of McMurray and the No. 42 of Montoya suffered transmission problems that eventually led to the cars’ engines blowing as they were being warmed up.
Prior to the engine changes, both drivers were slated to start in mid-pack after Friday’s qualifying session was scratched due to rain (the grid was subsequently based mostly off last year’s owner points as a result). McMurray was to go off 23rd, while Montoya was originally 25th in the lineup.
Newgarden fastest as Castroneves returns in weather-shortened Barber test
The Verizon IndyCar Series took to Barber Motorsports Park on Tuesday for an open test, with 24 entries tackling the 2.38-mile road course.
Weather intervened in the afternoon, preventing nearly the entire field from going out, but the weather held off during the morning enough for one session to be run in its entirety.
Team Penske’s Josef Newgarden led the way, with a quick lap of 1:07.979, ahead of Team Penske teammates Will Power and Helio Castroneves. For Castroneves, this marked his first IndyCar outing of 2018.
Sporting the Pennzoil “yellow submarine” paint scheme, Castroneves turned 41 laps around Barber in the morning session, with a quick lap of 1:08.315. He was also the only driver to venture out on track in the afternoon, completing eight laps.
The Dale Coyne Racing duo of Sebastien Bourdais and Zachary Claman De Melo completed the top five.