Sunday, Mar 26

Chaos at Indy…Reddick Makes it Through

Chaos at Indy…Reddick Makes it Through Thomas Marquis Photo

Wow! What a chaotic start to the Verizon 200 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. The first spin out of many at IMS started on turn 1 just after the field went green. And it didn’t stop there. Turn 1 gave nearly every driver issues today. It started with Justin Haley in lap 1 and continued until the very last overtime lap. Denny Hamlin was very loose and missed a turn, but stayed on the track. And he wasn’t the only one.

Part of the problem is it was hotter on Sunday than it was on Saturday. Track temp was reported to be 25 degrees hotter. All the drivers were stating that they were having problems with grip and that they kept getting loose.

Chris Buescher pitted at Lap 11 and something on the inside of his car caught fire. His pit crew got the fire out. Reportedly, Bubba Wallace had got into his door and knocked something loose, possibly causing the fire.

Not to be outdone by the chaos on the track, the Air Force hauler brought in for the fan experience got stuck in one of the tunnels.

On one of the last restarts, Reddick had to hold off AJ Allmendinger who had been driving hard all day. Turns out that his cooling device had not been working all day and when he got out of his car, he collapsed and was taken to the care center and released.

Chase Briscoe won Stage 1. Christopher Bell won Stage 2 and Reddick did some fancy driving to hold off everyone else. Reddick has won 2 of the last 5 cup races. He sets himself up 278 points behind Chase Elliot who is in the lead heading into the shootout.

Thomas Marquis

Rossi Takes the Checkered Flag in Indy

It’s great to be at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway at the Gallagher Grand Prix, the first of 3 races this weekend. We also have the Pennzoil 150 on the road course at IMS. The beginning of the Grand Prix was not without drama. Conor Daly had issues in the pits after running P6. There was an incident between Will Power and Pato O’Ward and Grosjean had some issues in the pits as well. The back end of the cars were slipping and sliding around but straightened up as the race went on. Marcus Ericksson started at the back of the grid but found himself in P2 for a time. And  early on, Jimmy Johnson was taking faster laps than Will Power and found himself in P1 in lap 24.

By lap 49, Herta was out of the race. He said via radio, “I think this is something we can’t fix.”

During the press conference, Will Power was talking about IMS and stated, “It’s always hard starting on the outside of this track…you get freighttrained.” 

Will Power ended up P3 which put him 7th all time leader for podium finishes and 92 career podium finishes. With this 3rd place finish, he took the points lead with 4 races to go. When asked how the season would end up, he stated, “It feels like it always goes down to the last race; [and it is] Impossible to predict in this series.” 46 points separate the top 5, so it truly will come down to the final 4 races this season.

Christian Lundgaard came in P2 for his first podium finish of his career. He stated, “It feels amazing, but the best thing is the team really deserves it….I’m just a guy doing my job, really…This is the right path. We are going in the right direction.” Lungaard turned 21last Saturday and showed a tremendous amount of poise for a 21 year old. One of his presents was a trip to Las Vegas immediately after Laguna Seca. Power suggested that the rest of the group be invited. Lungaard refused to let us know where he would be staying. 

Alexander Rossi led 44 of 85 laps. This was Rossi's 1st win in approximately 1000 days. This was his 8th career win. Rossi said, “We had a solid test here a month or so ago…As challenging as it is for me, it is for them too [speaking of the rest of the team].” Rossi was asked if a weight had been lifted and stated, “Yes. There’s no other way to explain it. You’re as good as your last race. It doesn’t matter how good you are…It’s a very special thing today.” 

It was announced in June that Rossi will be headed to McLaren. Rossi said today during the press conference, “Good thing we don’t have to have the conversation about breaking the losing streak.”

Be sure and tune into The Balance every Saturday morning from 9-11am. You can also find the podcast replay where ever you find your podcasts.


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