The Spell Breaks; O’Ward Wins Iowa as Newgarden Crashes

Deja Vu left the track with 65 laps to go, destroying any chance of a podium repeat from Saturday and smashing Josef Newgarden’s iron grip on Iowa Speedway. Pato O’Ward, who couldn’t figure out how get around newgarden Saturday, jumped to the lead and held on to win the Salue to Farmers 300.

Some Quick Thoughts

Another huge crowd saw another entertaining race. Not quites as god as Saturday’s race, but still an entertaining event.

Today’s win is the third time Pato O’Ward has won the second half of a double header. His fourth career victory came in his 50th Indycar start.

O’Ward’s last three oval finishes- 2nd, 2nd, 1st.

Has Andretti been replaced by Arrow McLaren SP in the Big Three? This weekend’s results-six of Saturday’s top 10 were from Penske, Ganassi, and AMSP. Today’s top 10 had seven finishers from those three.

Romain Grosjean was the star of the wekend for Andretti with two top 10s- 7th and 9th.

Great Drives-

Jimmie Johnson finishedfifth today. yesterday he led 19 laps before fading to 11th.

David Malukas ended the day eighth and cut Christian Lundgard’s Rookie of the Year lead to four points.

Marcus Ericsson barely hung on to the points lead. He leads Power by eight points and Newgarden by 34. O’Ward is just 36 points behind.

I talked to several fans today who were at Iowa Speedway for the first time.One, a veteran race fan, was amazed at the racing. A couple was attending their first race ever, and they loved it.

I will have more later tonight and a full wrapup tomorrow afternoon. I Need to hit the roiad back home. This was a fantastic weekend, which I will talk about tomorrow.

Double Pole for Power; Double Penske Front Row Lockout

And then there was one. Will Power moved moved within one career pole of Mario Andretti by grabbing poles for both races at Iowa Speedway. Josef Newgarden, Power’s team Penske teammmate, will start second in both races. Chevy powered cars will start each race in five of the first six positions. Power now has won five poles at Iowa.

The last pole sweep by a driver was by Simon Pagenaud in Detroit in 2016.

Conor Daly had held both provisional poles through 10 qualifiers until Newgarden firmly beat his times. Power then took to then track and turned the only laps int the 178 mph range to grab his 65th and 66th career poles. Power now has three poles for the season.

Colton Herta picked up nearly three miles an hour on his second lap to slot third for race 2. However, his team will change his engine after today’s race and he will be moved to 12th for Sunday’s race.

Rinus VeeKay had the most consistent run. His first lap was 176.626 mph and his second lap was 176.625 mph.

Will Power

Power talks about his double pole.

“Yeah, it was It was messy. It was skipping up the track and I was surprised those the quickest like but always wheeling it as much as I could. I thought it was leaving nothing on the table. So again, it was not there was a 17 (second lap) to encounter .”

Starting position is key.

” lt felt like you had to start in the top 10 To have a good race because it was seemed a little difficult to pass .. cars can follow along so you can make sense. Positions are in basic decision up with our strategy, but leading is obviously easier. You can queue up people when they need to get a bit of a lead up early they’ll come down to laps you know that was so yeah, good spot to be in.”

On catching points leader Marcus Ericsson:

“I’m hoping that this is a good weekend for us to catch Marcus. Because he’s very tough. He’s, he’s, you know, he’s not the best qualified but he’s probably the best racer in series in my opinion. I might have just over the years watching him race. He’s one of the toughest guys like he’s very, very good at starting back there and making his way all the way to the front. So yeah, he’s going to try and get some points on it.”

Saturday at Iowa- Qualifying Calls May Affect Race

Toiday’s Schedule: All Times Central

8:00 am Gates Open
8:30 am – 9:00 am Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires Qualifying
9:30 am – 10:45 am NTT INDYCAR SERIES Qualifying for Races 1 and 2 Peacock
11:15 am – 12:20 pm Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires Race (100 laps) Peacock
1:00 pm – 1:50 pm Tim McGraw Concert
3:00 pm – 5:00 pm NTT INDYCAR SERIES HyVeeDeals.com 250
presented by DoorDash (250 laps) Green flag at 3:30 NBC, Peacock
5:30 pm – 7:00 pm Florida Georgia Line Concert

If qualifying for the Indianapolis 500 is the most pressure in qualifying in Indycar, Iowa qualifying has to be the second most pressure. Drivers are qualifying for both races. The first lap is for today’s race, the second lap is the time for tomorrow’s race. Cars must race today as they qualify.

The session to set the lineup will be in cooler conditions that Friday’s practice, while the race will be run in similar conditions to Friday.

Just 0.7225 seconds separated the fastest car from the slowest in practice. One smallbobble can mean a big penalty in the starting lineup.

The race could be Team Penske versus Conor Daly and Pato O’Ward. Daly exuded confidence all day Friday. O’Ward is due for a reversal of his recent misfortunes. WE could be in for a really good race today.

Notes

The qualifying order may help the early runners as the temperatures rise during the session. Daly goes out in the middle of the round, which might help him.

If you are at the track, hydrate and take shade breaks. HyVee sells a very nice Indycar cooling towel.

One thing that struck me yesterday was the amount of advertising on the track’s outside wall, I have never seen so much at an Indycar track. Parts of the walls look like an NHL rink’s boards.

Qualifying order:

Power’s Late Lap Nips Daly in Iowa Practice

Will Power set the fastest lap in the only practice sessioin the Iowa double header. Conor Daly laid down a lop of 173.239 mph in the first 10 minutes of practice.Power edged Daly turning a 173.285 lap with less than 40 minutes to go in the 90 minute practice.

Qualifying for the two races begins at 9:30 Central time tomorrow. The HyVee Deals.com250 presented by DoorDash begins at 3 pm Central time tomorrow.

There were two stoppages, one for a track inspection and one for a fox running across the track. The fox jumped over the safer barrier.

“It’s my favorite oval,” Power said. “I think we’re in the mix.”

On running the high line, Power said, ” You gotta be wherever the car in front of you is not. It’s where can I get clean air?”

Notes

I went intoi one of the HyVee mobile stores this afternoon. It bis a camp store on steroids. If they don’t stock the product there, it can be ordered and elivered to you at the track.

HyVee has already hit a home run with this event. I am excited to see whatb the next two days bring. Indycar needs two or three more sponsors who will activate like they have

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