Josef Newgarden won the 107th Indianapolis 500 in a nail-biting finish, gaining his first victory in America’s biggest motor event. Following three red flags in the final 16 laps, Newgarden completed a daring manoeuvre on Marcus Ericsson during the last lap, securing his place in racing history.
Josef Newgarden Seizes Last-Lap Win at Indy 500 in Thrilling Showdown
Newgarden expressed his gratitude by sharing his experience from being a spectator in the stands to standing victorious on the legendary Indianapolis circuit. He acknowledged the event’s extraordinary excitement and showed his affection for the city that hosted the thrilling race.
Newgarden’s victory was hard-fought, and he admitted to feeling enormous pressure to win the Indy 500. He acknowledged the challenges he faced and the public’s perception of this race as a defining moment in a driver’s career.
The race concluded with a controversial decision to stage a one-lap shootout after the final red flag, rather than ending under caution. Ericsson voiced his disappointment, deeming the restart unsafe and unfair, emphasising the need for caution given the circumstances.
The event was disrupted by accidents and collisions, which contributed to the red-flag stoppages. Fortunately, no injuries were reported, but the incidents underscored the risks involved in the high-speed race.
First Win “at Home” for Team Penske
Newgarden’s victory gave team owner Roger Penske his 19th Indy 500 victory, further consolidating his record. Penske’s victory was his first since acquiring Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
Newgarden’s audacious pass on Ericsson during the final sprint secured the win, propelling him into the ranks of American winners at the Indy 500. The last American to emerge victorious was Alexander Rossi in 2016.
The historic race concluded with a jubilant Newgarden celebrating with the crowd, paying homage to the legendary Helio Castroneves by climbing the fence. The victory marked a momentous occasion for Newgarden, Team Penske, and the devoted fans who witnessed the remarkable Indy 500 showdown.
Santino Ferrucci, who races in the IndyCar series on a part-time basis, finished third. The American driver was one of the race’s key attractions, but he was unable to claim victory. Meanwhile, pole-sitter Alex Palou finished fourth after a pit lane incident pushed him to the rear of the pack halfway through the race. The Spaniard holds a 20-point lead over his Ganassi colleague Marcus Ericsson in the championship.
Among the drivers contending for the championship, Pato O’Ward suffered greatly in the race. The Mexican driver had a chance to win the 500 Miles, but a forced manoeuvre on Ericsson ended with him hitting the wall. Nonetheless, he remains in third place. Newgarden moved up to fourth position, despite being the only driver to have won two races this season.