Detroit IndyCar: O'Ward puts in late charge to beat Newgarden

Pato O’Ward put in a stunning late-race charge to claim his second IndyCar victory of the season, passing long-time leader Josef Newgarden with three laps remaining.

Detroit IndyCar: O'Ward puts in late charge to beat Newgarden

The Arrow McLaren SP driver took the initiative after a caution period emerged with 12 laps remaining, as Romain Grosjean spun and stopped on track following a brake fire.

O’Ward had just nipped past Scott Dixon following the end of a caution period one lap prior, brought out for Jimmie Johnson who slid out of control at Turn 1 and stalled – requiring a fire-up from the track marshals.

Lying in fifth at the final restart, O’Ward had tremendous pace as the green flag dropped and cleared Graham Rahal and Alex Palou almost immediately, which allowed him to go after the leading pair of Newgarden and Colton Herta.

O’Ward then picked off Herta a lap later, and immediately cut down the gap to Newgarden – chasing the Penske driver down to set up a final showdown.

With three laps remaining, Newgarden’s soft tyres began to lose performance and handed O’Ward an opportunity to dive past at Turn 7, which the Mexican driver took gladly and immediately scampered up the road to cement victory.

O’Ward becomes the first repeat winner of the season in IndyCar, and moves ahead of Alex Palou in the drivers’ standings – albeit by a single point.

Patricio O'Ward, Arrow McLaren SP Chevrolet

Patricio O'Ward, Arrow McLaren SP Chevrolet

Photo by: Jake Galstad / Motorsport Images

A despondent Newgarden hung onto second, batting away the advances of Palou and Herta at the end, but was left to rue his race strategy after his contra-strategy call was compromised almost immediately with a first-lap yellow flag: Max Chilton ended up hitting the rear of James Hinchcliffe after the Andretti driver hit the brakes to avoid a wayward Sebastien Bourdais.

Regardless, Newgarden built a huge lead over Herta on the first stint, eventually building a break of 14 seconds over Herta on the harder tyres in the race’s opening act.

Newgarden continued in the same vein after the first round of stops for the frontrunners, retaining a buffer of over 10 seconds from Herta.

But as the race ticked into half distance, the Andretti driver began to scythe away at Newgarden’s lead, dipping below the 1m16s as Newgarden was consistently logging 1m17s lap times.

Herta took the gap down to five seconds prior to his second stop, taking on a final set of primary, harder tyres to hunt down Newgarden – who had still yet to run the softer tyres.

After Newgarden took on the red-walled tyres, the set on which he set his pole lap in qualifying, Herta had the bit between his teeth and further hacked bundles of time out of the Penske driver before the final brace of cautions.

Despite his earlier pace, Herta could not pick up from where he left off in the final part of the race, dropping off the back of Newgarden and losing out to O’Ward.

Josef Newgarden, Team Penske Chevrolet

Josef Newgarden, Team Penske Chevrolet

Photo by: Barry Cantrell / Motorsport Images

Although Herta attempted an assault on both at Turn 3 with four laps remaining, he locked up and was then cleared by Palou – who claimed third place.

Graham Rahal finished fifth, having closed up to the last-gasp battle for second place, as Will Power somewhat made up for his Race 1 disappointment - in which his car failed to fire up after a final red flag while leading – to finish sixth on an alternate strategy.

Chip Ganassi Racing’s Dixon survived a first-lap scuffle with Alex Rossi and Grosjean – in which he was tagged by both at the first corner – to finish seventh, as Simon Pagenaud grabbed eighth.

Race 1 winner Marcus Ericsson made use of an early pitstop to climb up to ninth, after running out of fuel in qualifying, as Santino Ferrucci recovered from a qualifying crash to complete the top 10 in one of Rahal Letterman Lanigan’s spare cars.

IndyCar Detroit Grand Prix - Race 2 Results

shares
comments

Related video

Detroit IndyCar: Newgarden takes race two pole as Ferrucci crashes
Previous article

Detroit IndyCar: Newgarden takes race two pole as Ferrucci crashes

Next article

O’Ward dedicates Detroit IndyCar win to Rosenqvist and Ojjeh

O’Ward dedicates Detroit IndyCar win to Rosenqvist and Ojjeh
How Ericsson achieved Indy immortality as Ganassi's main man stumbled Plus

How Ericsson achieved Indy immortality as Ganassi's main man stumbled

Chip Ganassi Racing team was strong again in the Indianapolis 500, with poleman Scott Dixon and reigning champion Alex Palou leading almost three quarters of the race between them. But when dominator Dixon was penalised for pitlane speeding, ex-Formula 1 driver Marcus Ericsson stepped up to score the biggest win of his career and seize the IndyCar points lead

IndyCar
May 30, 2022
Ranking the top 10 IndyCar drivers of 2021 Plus

Ranking the top 10 IndyCar drivers of 2021

In an enthralling 2021 IndyCar campaign, the series bounced back from its COVID-19 truncated year prior and Alex Palou defeated both the established order and his fellow young guns to clinch a maiden title. It capped a remarkable season with plenty of standout performers

IndyCar
Nov 21, 2021
How F1's other IndyCar exile finally unlocked his potential Plus

How F1's other IndyCar exile finally unlocked his potential

Romain Grosjean's swashbuckling rookie year in IndyCar captured the imagination of many in 2021. But another ex-Formula 1 driver whose potential was masked by five years of toil in, at best, middling machinery also enjoyed a breakout year in 2021 - winning twice and finishing sixth in points. Here's how Marcus Ericsson finally delivered on his promise

IndyCar
Nov 16, 2021
How Ganassi's relentless new champion outfoxed IndyCar's best Plus

How Ganassi's relentless new champion outfoxed IndyCar's best

IndyCar sophomore Alex Palou stunned by overcoming team-mate Scott Dixon and the rest of a white-hot field in 2021. He was consistently fast and crucially showed a level head, rebounding well from setbacks to put himself in a near unassailable position entering the final round

IndyCar
Nov 4, 2021
Have Harvey and RLL formed IndyCar’s next winning match-up? Plus

Have Harvey and RLL formed IndyCar’s next winning match-up?

Despite appearing to have an IndyCar job for life with Meyer Shank Racing, Jack Harvey’s departure and move to Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing sparked plenty of debate. However, Harvey's and RLL's combined strengths could prove to be a winning combination - if they get the balance right

IndyCar
Oct 17, 2021
Remembering Dan Wheldon and his last and most amazing IndyCar win Plus

Remembering Dan Wheldon and his last and most amazing IndyCar win

Saturday 16 October marks the 10th anniversary of Dan Wheldon’s death. David Malsher-Lopez pays tribute, then asks Wheldon’s race engineer from 2011, Todd Malloy, to recall that magical second victory at the Indianapolis 500

IndyCar
Oct 16, 2021
Why Kyle Kirkwood is America's new IndyCar ace-in-waiting Plus

Why Kyle Kirkwood is America's new IndyCar ace-in-waiting

Kyle Kirkwood, the record-setting junior formula driver, sealed the Indy Lights championship last weekend. But despite an absurdly strong junior career and scholarship money, his next move is far from clear

IndyCar
Oct 6, 2021
Why IndyCar title glory is just the start for Ganassi's new star Plus

Why IndyCar title glory is just the start for Ganassi's new star

Newly-crowned IndyCar champion Alex Palou has been lauded as a complete driver and veteran-like in only his second season. The 24-year-old is still in the early days of his career, but the parallels are there for all to see with his six-time champion Chip Ganassi Racing team-mate who has been CGR's team leader since 2014

IndyCar
Sep 28, 2021