NEWTON, Iowa – Pato O’Ward won the Hy-Vee Salute to Farmers 300 presented by Google on Sunday at Iowa Speedway after dominant leader Josef Newgarden crashed out of the race with 65 laps remaining.
O’Ward drove his No. 5 Arrow McLaren SP Chevrolet to a 4.2476-second victory over Will Power in the No. 12 Verizon Team Penske Chevrolet. Scott McLaughlin finished third in the No. 3 Freightliner Team Penske Chevrolet, giving the Penske team two of the top three finishers.
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“We knew that we had a great car,” O’Ward said. “So, it was all about just capitalizing and being there when it counted. The guys did a great job calling when we had to pit. It was very, very enjoyable.”
Six-time NTT INDYCAR SERIES champion Scott Dixon finished fourth in the No. 9 PNC Bank Chip Ganassi Racing Honda, while his teammate and seven-time NASCAR Cup Series champion Jimmie Johnson recorded the best finish of his NTT INDYCAR SERIES career by placing fifth in the No. 48 American Legion Honda.
Series points leader Marcus Ericsson finished sixth in the No. 8 Huski Chocolate Chip Ganassi Racing Honda. He leads second-place Power in the standings by eight points with five races remaining this season.
O’Ward earned his second victory of the season – he also won May 1 on the road course at Barber Motorsports Park – and fourth win of his NTT INDYCAR SERIES career. The victory, coupled with his second-place finish Saturday in the HyVeeDeals.com 250 presented by DoorDash, helped O’Ward climb from sixth to fifth in the series standings. He is 36 points behind leader Ericsson.
“Hopefully we can win a couple more,” O’Ward said. “That would be fantastic. We’ve had a good year, but we’ve dumped two wins in the past couple of months. So, it’s definitely been a frustrating but rewarding few weeks. This is the perfect momentum we need.”
It looked like Team Penske might sweep the top two spots until Newgarden spun into the Turn 4 SAFER Barrier while leading on Lap 235 of 300 in the No. 2 Hitachi Team Penske Chevrolet. Newgarden, who won Saturday on the .894-mile oval, had led 148 of the first 234 laps and was 2.8384 seconds ahead of O’Ward before the stunning incident.
Newgarden was in cruise control before the crash, maintaining a steady gap to O’Ward. As he entered Turn 4 on the “Fastest Short Track on the Planet,” the left front wheel of his car lifted off the ground after an apparent…