Newgarden wins Toronto Indycar race, Dixon narrowly retains points lead in tenth

MotorNews.co.nz

Josef Newgarden was kicking himself Saturday, angry that he failed to qualify for the Fast Six. He knew he had the car to be there, but just missed, instead starting seventh.

An early-race caution allowed Newgarden to cycle to the front, and from there, the youngest member of Team Penske’s power four cruised to victory Sunday in Toronto in the Honda Indy Toronto. He led 58 of 85 laps and picked up his second victory of the season and his second victory in Toronto in three years.

“I think that’s twice I’ve had good calls. It’s about managing the race after that. We had a very fast car,” Newgarden said during a television interview from victory lane. Newgarden gave plenty of credit to Tim Cindric, who called his race.

The victory lifted him to fourth in the championship, just 23 points back of Scott Dixon.

“Yeah, it’s gonna be tough. It’s gonna be difficult beating all the guys (Team Penske). … I’d like to get a win somewhere we haven’t won before.”

Alexander Rossi came in about two seconds back of Rossi, his best finish since his victory in the 2016 Indianapolis 500.

Rossi was followed by hometown hero James Hinchcliffe. The Canadian driver finished third in front of his home fans for the second straight season.

The championship leader entering the race, Dixon was involved in a first-lap scuffle with Will Power. The pair collided coming around Turn 1. Dixon had to pit for an extended period and dropped to the back of the field. He stayed on the lead lap and capitalized on a mid-race caution to move back up through the field and finish 10th. Power, meanwhile, never got back out on track and finished last, pushing him down to sixth in the championship, tied with Graham Rahal, who finished ninth.

Newgarden gave Team Penske its 193rd victory, the most of any team.

Tony Kanaan had his brakes lock up while leaving the pits and connected with the protective tires in Turn 1. The caution caused the top three cars of Helio Castroneves, Simon Pagenaud and Rahal to fall back.

Esteban Gutierrez, the rookie filling in for Sebastien Bourdais at Dale Coyne Racing, was cleared to race after experiencing concussion-like symptoms after crashing late in qualifying Saturday.

Newgarden wins Toronto Indycar race, Dixon narrowly retains points lead in tenth

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