Will Power looking forward to having Josef Newgarden as teammate

(Photos: Getty Images)
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Will Power is looking forward to establishing a close working relationship with new Team Penske teammate Josef Newgarden.

At a Team Penske event Friday in Charlotte, Power offered high praise for his new teammate.

“To me, it was an obvious signing,” Power said. “If I put myself in the position of a team owner and you were going to sign someone, that would be the guy. If I were a team owner, I would sign that guy.

“He’s experienced now, he’s fast and he’s young, so he’s going to be around for quite a while. And he’s good on all disciplines. I couldn’t pick anyone else out in the field that you would put, he would be at the very top of the list and that’s why he ended up there.”

Josef Newgarden

Newgarden joins Power, 2016 Verizon IndyCar Series champion Simon Pagenaud and Helio Castroneves as the 2017 Team Penske IndyCar lineup.

“I’ve been spending a bit of time with him and they were asking him how many suits (fire suits) he wants for the weekend,” Power said of Newgarden. “He was really blown away by the fact that he can have however many suits he wants to use over a race weekend and how many gloves and shoes.”

Power already has some advice for his new teammate.

“Obviously, I want to say to him, if there’s anything you want to develop or have an idea, push it with your engineer because these guys have the resources to do anything,” he said. “I think that’s what’s going to be eye-opening for him, the attention to detail and what they can do.”

Having signed with Team Penske earlier this week, Newgarden will be put to work right away. He tests Monday at Road America and then Thursday, Oct. 13, at Gateway Motorsports Park.

“I think (with Newgarden) joining the team, it’s always great to get straight in the car,” Power said. “He’s getting in the car at Elkhart (Lake), he’ll get accustomed to his guys, new crew chief and new engineer.

“It’s actually very restrictive testing, so it’ll be great for him to get to know these guys. It’s important. And from a team perspective, it’s really the only tests you get to go to until February or so, just before the first race. It’s very important.”

Power said one of the biggest plusses Newgarden brings to Team Penske is his technical knowledge and expertise.

“He’s a fast driver, it just gives you immediate data to look at,” Power said. “Like if he’s quicker than you in a sector, he always has good ideas and different ideas because he came from another team, a single car team. He knows in his head what worked and what didn’t work.

“And sometimes bringing fresh ideas into a team helps, too. I just think it’ll be another guy in there that’s very efficient with the way he does things, and he’s very quick which always pushes everybody else and lifts the level of the game.”

Power was also asked about Juan Pablo Montoya, whose role on Team Penske is being taken by Newgarden.

There have been several reports that Montoya may remain with Team Penske but shift to racing sports cars full-time on the IMSA circuit.

Other reports have Montoya wanting to stay in IndyCar, but likely moving to another team. One of the most mentioned rumors is a potential “trade”: Montoya could potentially replace Newgarden at the latter’s now former team, Ed Carpenter Racing.

“I don’t know what Juan is doing, honestly I’m not sure,” Power said. “Obviously, Juan had his strengths and what he brought to the team.

“I don’t know how much it’s going to change when your taking someone out and putting someone in.

“Juan was obviously a really good driver and I think if he ends up somewhere else, he’ll wind up being strong competition for the team.”

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Seattle Supercross by the numbers: Three riders separated by 17 points


Three riders remain locked in a tight battle with 17 points separating the leader Cooper Webb from third-place Chase Sexton and these are only a few Supercross numbers to consider entering Seattle.

Seattle Supercross numbers
Chase Sexton made a statement in Detroit with his second win of 2023. – Feld Motor Sports

For the fifth time in 10 rounds. Sexton, Webb, and Eli Tomac shared the podium in Detroit. Between them, the trio has taken 23 podiums, leaving only seven for the remainder of the field. Jason Anderson, Ken Roczen and Justin Barcia have two each with Aaron Plessinger scoring the other.

Webb and Tomac won the last four championships with two apiece in alternating years, but they were not one another’s primary rival for most of those seasons. On the average, however, the past four years show an incredible similarity with average points earned of 21.0 for Webb and 21.3 for Tomac. With five wins so far this season, Tomac (23 wins) leads Webb (19) in victories but Webb (43) edges Tomac (41) in podium finishes during this span.

Tomac has won two of the last three Seattle races and those two wins in this stadium are topped only by James Stewart. Fittingly, if Tomac gets a third win this week, he will tie Stewart for second on the all-time wins’ list. Tomac tied Ricky Carmichael for third with 48 wins at Oakland and took sole possession of that spot with his Daytona win.

Sexton still has a lot to say and after winning last week in Detroit, he is speaking up. The Supercross numbers are against him entering Seattle, however, because a points’ deficit this large after Round 10 has been erased only once. In 1983 David Bailey was 47 points behind Bob Hannah, and like Sexton he was also in third place. Bailey took the points’ lead with one race remaining.

The seven points Sexton was penalized last week for jumping in a red cross flag section in Detroit could prove extremely costly.

In fact, it has been a series of mistakes that has cost Sexton the most. In the last two weeks, he lost 10 points with a 10th-place finish to go with his penalty. Erase those, and all three riders hold their fate in their hands.

Plessinger’s heartbreak in Detroit is still fresh, but the upside of his run is that was his best of the season and could turn his fortunes around. Prior to that race, he led only seven laps in three mains. He was up front for 20 laps in Detroit with five of those being the fastest on the track.

Last week’s win by Hunter Lawrence tied him with his brother Jett Lawrence for 17th on the all-time wins’ list. With the focus shifting to 250 West for the next two rounds, Jett has a great opportunity to pull back ahead. The real test will be at the first East / West Showdown in East Rutherford, New Jersey on April 22.

Last Five Seattle Winners

2022: Eli Tomac
2019: Marvin Musquin
2018: Eli Tomac
2017: Marvin Musquin
2014: Ryan Villopoto

2022: Hunter Lawrence
2019: Dylan Ferrandis
2018: Aaron Plessinger
2017: Aaron Plessinger
2014: Cole Seely

By the Numbers

Anaheim 2
San Diego

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Power Rankings after Detroit
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Results and points after Detroit
Chase Sexton wins in Detroit, penalized seven points