Photo: IndyCar

Newgarden leads Penske top three sweep in DXC Technology 600 qualifying

Leave a comment

Josef Newgarden captured the pole in what was a Team Penske sweep of the top three in positions in qualifying for Saturday night’s DXC Technology 600 at Texas Motor Speedway.

Newgarden posted a two-lap average 220.613 mph, bettering teammates Simon Pagenaud (220.311 mph) and Will Power (220.194). Power actually appeared to be on a pole run on his first lap, but hit the hard rev limiter entering Turn 3, which cost him valuable time.

Newgarden’s pole is his second of the year, and his third since joining Team Penske last year – it’s also the fourth of his Verizon IndyCar Series career.

“We fought all weekend. To come here and have speed in all the race cars is really nice,” Newgarden said afterward. “I think it comes down to a lot of things, the team, the personnel we have. We have some of the best people in the paddock. You can see that. When you have cars go 1-2-3, it shows the competitiveness of all the cars.”

Robert Wickens, who tied Tony Kanaan for the fastest time in practice, posted a lap of 219.561 mph to qualify fourth.

Sebastian Bourdais (219.302 mph) rounded out the top five.

Kanaan (219.157 mph) was unable to back up his practice speed and qualified sixth. Scott Dixon, Alexander Rossi, Takuma Sato, and Ryan Hunter-Reay rounded out the top 10.

Other notables include James Hinchcliffe (15th) and Graham Rahal (19th), both of whom struggled mightily in qualifying.

Results are below.

 

 

 

IndyCar: Ed Carpenter Racing signs Ed Jones for road, street course races in 2019

IndyCar
Leave a comment

2017 IndyCar Rookie of the Year Ed Jones has signed on to compete in IndyCar road and street course races in 2019 for Ed Carpenter Racing, the team announced Wednesday.

Jones replaces Jordan King at ECR, whose contract was not renewed for 2019.

“Joining Ed Carpenter Racing and Scuderia Corsa for the 2019 IndyCar Series is a fantastic opportunity to be a part of,” Jones said in a media release.

Jones will also drive a third car for ECR in the 2019 Indianapolis 500, making it 13 races of the 17-race IndyCar schedule that he’s due to compete in.

“Ed Carpenter Racing has shown amazing speed the last few years at the Indianapolis 500,” Jones said. “You can always expect the ECR cars to be at the front. I am really grateful for this chance and will do everything I can to make sure we, as a team, make the most of it.”

In addition, Las Vegas-based Scuderia Corsa will become a partner with ECR on Jones’ No. 20 Chevrolet (as well as the No. 64 Chevy he’ll drive in the Indy 500).

“Both ECR and Scuderia Corsa have been successful in their respective series and I feel the combination of forces will be greatly beneficial,” Jones said. “I’m extremely excited to get underway.”

Jones will yield driving duties in the No. 20 Chevy for four races to team owner Ed Carpenter on oval tracks, while Spencer Pigot returns as the team’s full-time driver in the No. 21 Chevrolet.

“I am very excited to welcome Ed Jones to the ECR family, as well as Scuderia Corsa and Giacomo (Scuderia Corsa co-founder Giacomo Mattioli),” Carpenter said. “I was very surprised when Ed became available at the end of the season. I look forward to working together to get ECR back in Victory Lane.”

The 23-year-old Jones, who hails from Dubai, United Arab Emirates, previously drove for Chip Ganassi Racing in 2018 (finished 13th in the final season standings) and Dale Coyne Racing in 2017 (finished 14th). He won the Indy Lights championship in 2016, as did new teammate Pigot in 2015.

During the 2018 season, Jones had two podium finishes (Long Beach and Belle Isle II) and eight top-10 finishes in the 17-race campaign.

Since forming in 2012, Scuderia Corsa has earned more than 100 wins over numerous racing platforms, primarily sports-car based. However, it made its first foray into IndyCar racing by backing Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing and driver Oriol Servia’s effort in the 2018 Indy 500.

Jones began his new job with ECR immediately, watching new boss Carpenter take part today (Wednesday) in a closed Firestone tire test at Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

Follow @JerryBonkowski