NASCAR Race Weekend Central

Josef Newgarden Dusts the Field for Iowa Corn 300 Win

Competing in his first oval race since suffering a broken collarbone and wrist at Texas Motor Speedway, Josef Newgarden beat down the field to claim a dominant win in Sunday’s Iowa Corn 300 at Iowa Speedway.

Newgarden, 25, improved from two-straight runner-up performances at the Newton, Iowa, circuit by leading a race record 282 out of 300 laps in a rout of the field. The result marks Newgarden’s third-career win, and his first of 2016.

Starting on the outside pole, Newgarden quickly surged around pole sitter Simon Pagenaud on the race’s opening lap. The Tennessean then proceeded to gap the field, lapping cars by lap 20 as he stretched his lead each time around the .875-mile oval.

By the time the first caution for the race flew for defending race winner Ryan Hunter-Reay on lap 110, Newgarden had lapped all but second-place runner Pagenaud.

The field caught up to Newgarden under the yellow, but the moment the race went back to green the Ed Carpenter Racing driver shot back out to the lead in his No. 21 Fuzzy’s Vodka ECR Chevrolet-Dallara.

The same routine continued throughout the race, even with two other yellows – one for a blown motor for Juan Pablo Montoya, the other for a spin from Max Chilton. Driver such as Pagenaud, Scott Dixon and Tony Kanaan could stay with Newgarden for a few laps after a restart, but the fifth-year driver continued to dominate as the race continued on each time.

Will Power used a late surged to rise from fourth and take second on the finishing grid, his third-straight podium following wins at Belle Isle and Road America.

Dixon completed the podium, with Pagenaud and Mikhail Aleshin rounding out the top five. Aleshin served as the top Honda, scoring his first top 10 since earning a fifth-place result in the season-opening Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg.

Alexander Rossi, Kanaan, Sebastien Bourdais, James Hinchcliffe and Charlie Kimball completed the top 10.

After winning six-straight races at Iowa going into 2016, Andretti Autosport struggled mightily in their pursuit for a seventh win. Rossi led the way for the team with his sixth-place showing, while Carlos Munoz, Marco Andretti and Hunter-Reay ended their days in 12th, 14th and 22nd.

Results

  1. Josef Newgarden
  2. Will Power
  3. Scott Dixon
  4. Simon Pagenaud
  5. Mikhail Aleshin
  6. Alexander Rossi
  7. Tony Kanaan
  8. Sebastien Bourdais
  9. James Hinchcliffe
  10. Charlie Kimball
  11. Takuma Sato
  12. Carlos Munoz
  13. Helio Castroneves
  14. Marco Andretti
  15. Jack Hawksworth
  16. Graham Rahal
  17. Gabby Chaves
  18. Ed Carpenter
  19. Max Chilton
  20. Juan Pablo Montoya
  21. Conor Daly
  22. Ryan Hunter-Reay

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DoninAjax

How many “debris” cautions would there have been if Brian was in charge?

The race played out. The best car won the race. It’s a concept that Brian will never understand.

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