Newgarden sustains first heavy accident of Indy practice

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INDIANAPOLIS – Josef Newgarden has suffered his first setback as a member of the Team Penske squad, as the first driver to sustain a significant accident this month.

While running in traffic, notably around Ryan Hunter-Reay, the driver of the No. 2 hum by Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet lost control and crashed out exiting Turn 1, continuing with further contact into Turn 2.

Newgarden’s chassis has sustained right side and some heavy left front damage, and may cost him the rest of the day’s running.

A replay of the incident is below:

Newgarden was able to climb from his car without assistance from the Holmatro Safety Team, per INDYCAR. He was checked and released from the infield medical center and has been cleared to drive.

“I banged my foot a little bit, so it’s going to be bruised for the next couple of weeks, but I’ll get through that,” he said.

“I’m totally fine, the car did it’s job like it always has. We have a great safety crew here in INDYCAR, and we’ve got a great racing tub with Dallara.

“I’m fine, it’s a tough break for us on the No. 2 with Team Penske. It’s obviously not something you want to do, especially on a day like today, a pretty nice day with no issues.

“I haven’t had a chance to look at, it just seemed to get away from me when I was trying to get in and keep out of the way of the guys behind me.

“I just got called into the pits, and I didn’t want to check up for they guys behind me, and cause a problem, but it just seemed to get away from me, but until I get a chance to look at it, I’m not 100% sure what caused it.” 

Although rookie Jack Harvey sustained a slight incident in Turn 2 on Monday, this was the first major accident in practice for the 101st Indianapolis 500 presented by PennGrade Motor Oil.

Newgarden was fourth on the day with a best speed of 225.455 mph, set in a tow. He did not record a no-tow speed today.