Josef Newgarden was in prime position on the last lap to have a good points day until Santino Ferrucci’s car got loose and came down on Newgarden. Newgarden went off the track and almost wrecked his car. Though he was able to stay off the wall, he lost a few points to Alexander Rossi, as Rossi barely beat Newgarden at the line to gain some points on Newgarden.
“It’s important to know he (Santino Ferrucci) is a rookie, but what he did was just dangerous,” Newgarden told NBCSN. “He came over and talked to me and said he was loose while he was down there. I was in the exact same position tonight. I know what it’s like to get up in the marbles, got there a couple of times. He came back down in the racing line directly which there was no real reason to.”
“I gave him the position twice because I was suffering with vibrations all night and my car was getting difficult to drive at the end of that stint. So, I let him go two times in the night but he’s gotta learn in big time auto racing, if you do a move like that on an oval, particularly high speed oval, you will cause a very serious wreck. He’s just got to know that. I really drilled it to him. You cannot come directly into the racing line; that was his instinct. He’s a racer and you’re going to have instincts like that but you can’t do that in oval racing. That’s not okay, so it’s a lesson. I hope he learns that and I hope he gets that in his head.”
Newgarden started on the pole and finished seventh in the event. He leads his teammate Simon Pagenaud by 38 points and Alexander Rossi by 46 points.
Ferrucci had a solid night barring the last lap incident. He led 97 laps and finished fourth.
“I was trying to bring home some hardware,” Ferrucci said to NBCSN. “We were running out front all night, quite frankly, our racecar was good enough to win this thing. At the end there, I was really trying to get to TK (Tony Kanaan) and I lost the car, and I wanted to get out of the marbles. I didn’t close the line on him too much but obviously, we’re fighting for two different championships.”
“At the end of the day, I did what I had to do to save the car. Unfortunately, he got the worst of it, but you know he did finish the race and still picked up some good championship points. Overall, I could have gave him a little more room, but I really wanted that hardware.”