Josef Newgarden won the latest Texas shootout for the NTT IndyCar Series, holding off Alexander Rossi for the win Saturday night in the DXC Technology 600 at Texas Motor Speedway.
Newgarden, in the No. 2 Fitzgerald USA Team Penske Chevrolet, led the final 47 laps on the 1.5-mile superspeedway. He and Rossi went wheel to wheel numerous times in the closing 10 laps as the Andretti Autosport driver tried overtaking maneuvers on the outside heading into Turn 1. Newgarden thwarted each attempt and held on by 0.8164 of a second to collect his 13th career win, third this season and first on a superspeedway.
Graham Rahal finished third, rookie Santino Ferrucci fourth and Ryan Hunter-Reay fifth.
The 248-lap race ran caution-free for more than the first half, until Zach Veach brushed the SAFER Barrier exiting Turn 2 on Lap 135. The No. 26 Gainbridge Honda did a 360-degree spin but Veach kept it off the wall and came to a stop in Turn 3 with only a flat tire.
The race’s second caution came when James Hinchcliffe slid wide into the Turn 2 SAFER Barrier on Lap 219. The final yellow waved when the cars of Scott Dixon and rookie Colton Herta touched while battling for third place in Turn 3 on Lap 229, sending both into the SAFER Barrier. All the drivers were unhurt from the incidents.
The caution for the Dixon-Herta incident set up the shootout to the finish between Newgarden and Rossi.
Pole sitter Takuma Sato led the first 60 laps of the race until making his first pit stop, but his No. 30 ABeam Consulting Honda slid into the pit stall and made contact with crewman Chris Welch. Sato was assessed a stop-and-go penalty for hitting crewman. Welch was evaluated and released from the track’s infield care center.
Ferrucci collected a career-best fourth-place finish in the No. 19 Cly-Del Manufacturing Honda for Dale Coyne Racing. Hunter-Reay led a race-high 90 laps in the No. 28 DHL Honda but was forced to make an extra stop for fuel and wound up fifth.
Tony Kanaan finished 16th in the No. 14 ABC Supply AJ Foyt Racing Chevrolet but tied team owner A.J. Foyt for second place on the Indy car career starts list with 369. It also extended Kanaan’s record streak of consecutive race starts to 309.
The win allowed Newgarden to extend his championship lead to unofficially 25 points over Rossi after nine of 17 races.
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