O’Ward taken out of IndyCar title fight early in series finale

Arrow McLaren SP's Pato O’Ward has lost his shot at the IndyCar title at the Long Beach finale due to transmission failure, which occurred 17 laps after he was punted into a spin at the end of the opening tour.

O’Ward taken out of IndyCar title fight early in series finale

O’Ward lost his points lead to Chip Ganassi Racing's Alex Palou in Portland two races ago and came into the finale 35 points behind the leader at the rescheduled season finale on the streets of Long Beach.

At the end of the opening lap O’Ward was hit from behind by Ed Jones of Dale Coyne Racing with Vasser Sullivan, who was trying to pass James Hinchcliffe's Andretti Autosport at Long Beach’s tight hairpin, and was punted into a spin.

“I got hit,” he complained over the radio before spin-turning his car and rejoining.

Jones was given a drive-through penalty for avoidable contact.

O’Ward continued until lap 18, when his right-rear halfshaft broke as he shifted through the gears exiting the hairpin.

“Looks like a broken driveshaft mate, looks like you’ve lost power,” team president Taylor Kiel told him over the radio.

“It’s not the first time he’s hit us,” complained O’Ward of Jones to NBCSN.

“Not the first time he’s done something stupid all season also.

Patricio O'Ward, Arrow McLaren SP Chevrolet

Patricio O'Ward, Arrow McLaren SP Chevrolet

Photo by: Barry Cantrell / Motorsport Images

“I just wish he could use his head a little bit more, at least respect the guys fighting for the championship.

“The corner is [about] respect the guys in front of you then maybe you get a run [on the exit] – I’m not telling him how to race me but don’t be stupid about it.”

When asked to reflect on his title near-miss, he replied: “I think we had a great season, I’m proud of the team, proud of myself.

“Obviously it wasn’t the [most] perfect of seasons but that’s just how it’s going to be, you just have to learn from the little mistakes that you might have made and I feel like that gets you stronger.

“I’m looking forward to next year, I think we have a great baseline to start off from and see if we can get more wins and challenge for another title.”

Palou’s only rival is now Josef Newgarden, who led from the pole early on, but Palou needs only to finish 12th to claim the crown.

shares
comments

Related video

Ticktum would make a great IndyCar driver, says Carlin

Previous article

Ticktum would make a great IndyCar driver, says Carlin

Next article

IndyCar Long Beach: Palou secures maiden title as Herta beats Newgarden

IndyCar Long Beach: Palou secures maiden title as Herta beats Newgarden
Load comments
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
Why Grosjean's oval commitment shows he's serious about IndyCar Plus

Why Grosjean's oval commitment shows he's serious about IndyCar

One of motorsport’s worst-kept secrets is now out in the open, and Romain Grosjean has been confirmed as an Andretti Autosport IndyCar driver in 2022. It marks a remarkable turnaround after the abrupt end to his Formula 1 career, and is a firm indication of his commitment to challenge for the IndyCar Series title  

IndyCar
Sep 24, 2021
Why IndyCar’s longest silly-season is still far from over Plus

Why IndyCar’s longest silly-season is still far from over

OPINION: The 2021 IndyCar silly season has been one of the silliest for many years, as many talented drivers remain in play – with new pieces to the puzzle being added all the time. Here's what we know so far about who will end up where in 2022

IndyCar
Sep 15, 2021
Why IndyCar's generational shift isn't as stark as it appears Plus

Why IndyCar's generational shift isn't as stark as it appears

OPINION: The rise of two drivers racing only their second full-season IndyCar campaigns to head the points with four races to go has led to some observers doubting the credentials of the old guard. But they haven't faded away, there's merely a deeper talent pool that is helping to make this season one of the best in recent years

IndyCar
Aug 20, 2021
The F1 champion who became an Indy king in his second career Plus

The F1 champion who became an Indy king in his second career

Emerson Fittipaldi’s decision to go racing with his brother led to him falling out of F1, but he bloomed again on the IndyCar scene. NIGEL ROEBUCK considers a career of two halves

Formula 1
Jul 31, 2021