Rookie Oliver Askew OK after hard impact in Indy 500 restart crash


INDIANAPOLIS — Oliver Askew was “a little shaken up” but OK after the rookie sustained a wicked hit during a crash on a restart near the midpoint of Sunday’s Indy 500.

The incident began on Lap 92 when Conor Daly lost control of his No. 47 off Turn 4 as the race went green.

Attempting to avoid the spin, Askew’s No. 7 Dallara-Chevrolet veered to the left, and the Arrow McLaren SP driver slammed the inside SAFER barrier with his right front near the entry to pit lane (VIDEO ABOVE).

After coming to a stop, Askew gingerly climbed out of his car and was attended to by three safety workers. The 23-year-old leaned on the sidepod of his car while catching his breath.

IndyCar officials announced that Askew and Daly both had been checked and released from the infield care center and were cleared to drive.

“I’m OK; I was shaken up after that hit,” Askew told NBC Sports pit reporter Kevin Lee. “I had the wind knocked out of me and banged up my knee a little bit. I have to say thank you to Dallara and IndyCar for making these cars so safe.

“A big sorry to the team. We were having a good run there being aggressive on strategy. On the accident, I saw a bunch of smoke in front of me and tried to avoid Helio (Castroneves) and just lost the car and tired to avoid the accident. It’s a shame.”

Daly initially told Lee he wasn’t sure what happened but then took the blame after watching a replay of the incident.

“It’s like my left-front tire fell into a hole or something,” Daly said. “It’s never happened before. I thought I almost had it (saved). Looks like I just caught the curb, which is probably on me.”

Askew moved up into the NTT IndyCar Series after winning the 2019 Indy Lights championship.

Ken Roczen signs with HEP Progressive Ecstar Suzuki for 2023

Roczen Progressive Ecstar Suzuki
Align Media

ANAHEIM, California – Ken Roczen will make the move from HRC Honda to H.E.P. Motorsports with the Progressive Ecstar Suzuki team, ending a long and eventful offseason that saw his split from his longstanding team after he committed to running World Supercross (WSX).

“H.E.P. Motorsports is thrilled to announce that the team has signed Ken Roczen as its premier rider for the 2023 season,” the team announced on Instagram. “Former AMA Motocross champion Roczen will be aboard a Suzuki RM-Z450. Roczen, who won his most recent championship on a Suzuki, will be reunited with the brand and bring his exciting style, determination, and grit back to the RM Army.

“Ken Roczen will compete in the upcoming 2023 Supercross and Motocross Championship series which is set to start on January 7 at Anaheim Stadium in Southern California.”

For Roczen, it is a return to the bike of his youth and on which he had some of his greatest professional success.

“This thing has been going on for weeks and weeks and weeks in the making, but there was so much uncertainty,” Roczen told NBC Sports during Monster Energy Supercross Media Sessions. “It was a very unique situation. I just finally signed two nights ago, so it’s really only legit once the ink hits the paper. It’s been in the works for a long time, but there were just a lot of questions and a lot of input from a lot of other teams too.

“Good things take time, and I’m okay with that. I grew up riding Suzuki. Ot’s like a homecoming. It’s a special feeling”

Roczen won the 2016 Lucas Oil Pro Motocross Championship on a Suzuki before making the move to Honda. That year he won nine of 12 Nationals and finished no worse than second as he easily outpaced Eli Tomac by 86 points. He finished third in his next Pro Motocross outing in 2018 after sitting out the outdoor season in 2017.

“I am beyond excited to reconnect with Suzuki for the 3rd time in my career. We’ve had a lot of success in the past and I’m looking forward to seeing what we can accomplish together in our future.” Roczen said in the Instagram post.