RACE RUNDOWN: In his 12th start in “The Greatest Spectacle in Racing,” Josef Newgarden captured his first Indianapolis 500 win and the 100th win for Team Penske and Shell-Pennzoil in any series.
After starting the race from the 17th position, Newgarden methodically worked his way through the field during the 200-lap event. His first stint of the day and first pit sequence were significantly strong as he moved into the ninth position before the race even completed 50 laps. Following his fourth pit stop of the day at lap 134, Newgarden moved into the third position to set up a frantic run to the checkered flag that saw him and the No. 2 Shell Powering Progress Chevrolet team endure multiple red-flag periods in the last 15 laps. In the final, two-lap shootout to the checkered, Newgarden pushed past the No. 8 of Marcus Ericsson and held off last year’s Indianapolis 500 winner in the fourth-closest finish in the history of the race, winning by a margin of only .0974.
NEWGARDEN’S THOUGHTS: “I’m so I thankful! I’ve cried out the emotions. I had a ton of emotion there for a little bit. I’m just thankful to the team that we finally got this done. You know, I was trying to put it off that you know it’s not going to define a career winning a race here. But everyone seems to want to make it a defining moment, and for me, you know, it’s impossible but I look at it that way and then I’m elated to finally get it to work out. This is way more than me. This is the entire team. They built an amazing car. Tim (Cindric) calling an amazing strategy. [Roger Penske] for sticking with us and having the faith. I can’t speak enough about the team effort because that’s what it takes. I’ve been wanting to win here and go in the crowd for so long. I’ve been waiting to do that–I’ve always wanted to go in the crowd here to Indy. There’s nothing like it. I’m just so thankful to be here to have a shot to run this race. It’s I will never forget this from my from my life.”