The Bommarito Automotive Group 500 Saturday night started off under caution, as Tony Kanaan starting P17 made contact in Turn 2 on the first lap. The race would restart under green on Lap 5, before a three-car incident in Turn 2 effectively ended the race of Ed Carpenter, pole sitter Will Power, and Takuma Sato. The contact and clean up would require 12 laps of caution—the longest of the race.
The Bommarito 500 would spend a total of 43 laps under caution, with a total of five caution periods. It many ways it was a replay of Texas. Similar to Texas, Gateway was recently repaved. No word whether the new surface was the main cause of the incidents. In total, seven cars would be forced to retire as a result of contact, not quite the demolition derby witnessed at Texas but a still a third of the grid retired. All drivers involved in contact incidents were checked and released by on-site medical staff.
Despite the early and unusual race incidents, the race was straightforward for Josef Newgarden. Newgarden led 170 of the 248 laps around Gateway, the last oval of the season. His overtake on Team Penske team-mate Simon Pagenaud on Lap 218 proved to be the winning pass.
Twitter: WOW! @JosefNewgarden squeezes by on the inside! #INDYCAR #Bommarito500 https://t.co/1I2Xejdij6 https://t.co/CSFqcAVRrW (@IndyCar)
Newgarden, the current IndyCar points leader, doubled his career best win tally with a win at Gateway Motorsports Park during the Bommarito Automotive Group 500 Saturday night. The 26-year-old now has four wins in a season besting his previous two wins during the 2015 season with CFH Racing.
With the win, Newgarden now leads Scott Dixon by 31 points with two races to go, Watkins Glen and Sonoma. Penske team-mate Helio Castroneves trails in third by 45 points.
Bommarito Automotive Group 500 Race Notes:
– Sebastien Bourdais made his racing return after his Indianapolis 500 qualifying crash. The Frenchman started P19 and finished P10, even leading five laps.
– Conor Daly had his best finish of the season, P5.
– With the win, Team Penske cars have won five in a row; three by Newgarden.