Photo: Indianapolis Motor Speedway, LLC Photography

MRTI: Malukas wins Pro Mazda Race 2, Kirkwood takes USF2000 Race 2 in Portland

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The 2018 Pro Mazda Championship Presented by Cooper Tires season came to an end on Sunday with Race 2 at Portland International Raceway, and David Malukas dominated the outing to take his third win of the 2018 season.

Starting second, Malukas jumped into the lead with an aggressive move on the start to take the lead – he shot up the middle between Rinus VeeKay and Parker Thompson to take the top spot.

Malukas went unchallenged from there to win by over three seconds.

VeeKay, the 2018 Pro Mazda champion, finished second, holding off a hard-charging Oliver Askew in the process.

Nikita Lastochkin finished fourth, with Thompson fifth after suffering a cut tire following the opening lap. Sting Ray Robb finished sixth, the last car running, while Robert Megennis and Moises de la Vara dropped out after contact – they were credited with seventh and eighth.

Results from Race 2 are below.


USF2000: Kirkwood caps Incredible 2018 With His 12th Win

Kyle Kirkwood at Portland International Raceway. Photo: Indianapolis Motor Speedway, LLC Photography

Kyle Kirkwood completed his remarkable 2018 Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship Powered by Mazda season by scoring his 12th win of the year, and 11th in a row, in Sunday’s Race 2 at Portland International Raceway.

Kirkwood started third, but took the lead on a Lap 7 restart from then leader Rasmus Lindh – Kaylen Frederick was in the mix early on, but nosed into the back of Lindh after an earlier restart. Frederick suffered damage to his front wing and was given a drive-through penalty for the contact.

Back up front, Kirkwood pulled away from Lindh after taking the lead, and won by just under two seconds.

Julian Van der Watt outdueled Igor Fraga in the battle for third, while Lucas Kohl rounded out the top five. Frederick, meanwhile, languished in 15th after the contact and penalty.

Race 2 results are below.


Will Power, Roger Penske collect Indy 500 trophies

Photo by Chris Graythen/Getty Images
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DETROIT (AP) Last year, Will Power finally broke through and won the Indianapolis 500, so he can cross that accomplishment off the list.

Now 37, Power is reaching an age when it’s fair to wonder how much longer he’ll keep at it.

“I’m really enjoying my racing. I’ve never been so motivated. I’m fitter than I’ve ever been, mentally on the game,” Power said. “I think once you get to this part of your career, you realize that you’re not going to be doing this forever. So you’ve got to enjoy it and you’ve got to go for it when you’ve got it, because, you know, probably only another five years at maximum, and you’re retired.”

Whenever Power’s career does wind down, his 2018 Indy 500 win will remain a moment to remember. He was in Detroit on Wednesday night with team owner Roger Penske for a ceremony in which they received their “Baby Borg” trophies for winning last year’s race. The Baby Borgs are replicas of the Borg-Warner Trophy that honors the Indy 500 winner.

Power finished second at Indy in 2015, and his victory last year made him the race’s first Australian winner. It was Penske’s 17th Indy 500 win as an owner, part of a banner year for him. Penske also won a NASCAR Cup title with driver Joey Logano.

“When you think about 2018, we had 32 race wins, 35 poles. I think we led almost 5,400 laps, with all the series,” Penske said.

On Wednesday, Penske collected another significant trophy, and he’ll be celebrated again in a couple weeks. He’s being inducted into the NASCAR Hall of Fame in Charlotte, North Carolina, on Feb. 1.

“It’s amazing that a guy from the north can get into the Hall of Fame in the south,” Penske joked. “No, it’s special. … NASCAR has helped us build our brand over the years, certainly, with the reputation it has, and the notoriety we get, being a NASCAR team owner.”

Penske’s most recent Indy 500 title came courtesy of Power, who long preferred road courses to ovals but certainly looked comfortable at Indianapolis Motor Speedway last year.

“The 500 was one record that he didn’t have, and I think you saw the excitement he and his wife, and the whole team, when he was able to win the race,” Penske said. “He’s probably the best qualifier we’ve ever had, as a road racer, and no question his expertise. He didn’t like ovals to start with, but I think today, he loves racing on ovals.”

Power seems content with all aspects of his racing life at the moment. The aftermath of an Indy 500 victory can be a whirlwind, and it would be understandable for a driver to be weary of it eight months later, but for Power, it’s a new experience.

“I’ve been looking forward to this event for a few months now, to actually get the Baby Borg. You have the face on it – I didn’t realize that, you actually get your own face on it,” Power said. “It makes you realize the significance of the event, when you think about all the things that come with winning the 500.”

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