IndyCar: Aleshin OK after Montoya’s car on top of him at Turn 8 in Toronto (VIDEO)

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TORONTO – A serious-looking accident has occurred at the Verizon IndyCar Series’ second race of the Honda Indy Toronto weekend (LIVE on NBCSN/NBC Sports Live Extra) just past the 12-lap mark, and put the 65-lap race under its second full course caution of the race.

But the incident involving Mikhail Aleshin and Juan Pablo Montoya primarily, plus hometown hero James Hinchcliffe and two other cars, fortunately has seen Aleshin emerge unscathed. See the NBCSN clip above, and a separate YouTube clip here.

Steady rain began to fall just after the race started and intensified at the 90-degree right-handed Turn 8. The Turn 8 patch was slick and triggered a series of offs.

Montoya nosed into the tire barriers, Hinchcliffe lost control of his car and collected Montoya’s right rear wheel guard with his left side. Race one winner Sebastien Bourdais and Charlie Kimball ran into the runoff area to avoid the incident.

But Aleshin locked up and went straight into Montoya’s car, and his No. 7 SMP Racing Honda was wedged directly underneath Montoya’s No. 2 Hawk Performance Chevrolet.

It was a wreck reminiscent of one in a CART race in 1998 at Road America, when Alex Barron ran on top of Bryan Herta’s stopped car. Barron’s car needed to be craned away and lifted off Herta’s.

This was the situation here; Montoya’s car was lifted off Aleshin’s while the INDYCAR Holmatro Safety Team tended to Aleshin. Aleshin, the Russian rookie, walked out under his own power, and returned to the pit lane.

“I realized that only when I started to brake. I smacked the other car. I ended up under the car,” Aleshin told NBCSN’s Marty Snider. “It was not such a great feeling at all. I’m sorry for the spectators and everyone who supports me. The most important thing is everything is fine.

“As you can see, there are some marks here in the helmet,” he added. “I was sitting under the car, it was getting so much closer. I could not breathe at all. I was just sitting under the car. Impossible to breathe, and not nice feeling at all.”

Aleshin tweeted his helmet pic after the incident.

Josef Newgarden led the race at the Lap 19 restart, on a wet/dry track.

MRTI: Telitz gets creative to help racing career

Photo: Indianapolis Motor Speedway, LLC Photography
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To say that Belardi Auto Racing’s Aaron Telitz has endured a difficult start to the 2018 Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires season would be an understatement. The Wisconsin native only completed four corners through the first three races – Races 1 and 2 at St. Petersburg, and Race 1 at Barber Motorsports Park – with St. Pete being especially problematic.

He took the pole for Race 1, but a crash during qualifying for Race 2 prevented him from actually starting. What’s more, the damage was so severe that the Belardi team needed a brand new chassis, with Telitz’s Dallara IL-15 damaged beyond repair.

They also had to borrow a car from Carlin for Race 2, but Telitz’s race ended after he got tangled up with Victor Franzoni in Turn 2 on Lap 1.

With the damage bill well into the six figures as a result, Telitz has taken to some unique, or rather, creative ways to raise money in the aftermath to help cover the costs. “Creative,” in this case, meaning Telitz is using his art skills.

An artist in his spare time, Telitz has begun selling his own original paintings to help raise money.

 “I’ve been to a lot of art shows and I see stuff and I go, ‘Holy cow, someone’s going to pay a thousand dollars for that thing?’” Telitz quipped in a story posted on the Milwaukee Journal.

In discussing his artistic abilities, Telitz added, “I’m working at getting better. I’d like to be able to paint some animals, those types of things. I got a request from Alexander Rossi to see if I could paint his dog. Unfortunately I can’t do that yet.”

Further, in a partnership with The Styled Garage, Telitz is selling his own merchandise, and accepting donations, to help his cause.

Telitz finished fourth in Race 2 at Barber on Sunday, and sits seventh in the Indy Lights championship, 59 points behind leader Pato O’Ward.

Follow@KyleMLavigne