Newgarden wanted fair Indy 500 fight
American Josef Newgarden was bitterly disappointed at missing out in victory in the Indy 500, bemoaning the fact that he wanted a fair fight.
Newgarden’s Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet had been a leading contender throughout the 200-laps until falling short by virtue of a strategy call.
The rising star took the lead on lap 28 and paced the field for 14 laps, the same amount of tours as winner Alex Rossi accumulated at the head of the field.
Newgarden finished third behind Andretti Autosport’s Carlos Munoz, the runner-up who lead for 10 laps.
The 25-year-old Newgarden was one of 13 different leaders of the race and finished in close attendance to Munoz as the pair fell just short of running down a fuel-starved Rossi.
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“It was a crazy race. Not the way I wanted to finish it. I think we had a shot at outracing these guys today and that’s all I wanted was a shot to race him at the end,” Newgarden said.
“It’s not the way the cards fell today with the fuel that everyone was using and the way the fuel started to break down towards the end and everyone started to see what they had to do.
“It wasn’t a straight shootout.
“People were doing different strategies and we went for it. We were trimming out. We were doing a normal running and we went flat out, trying to win the thing and when you have a strong a car as we did you have to do that.
“I mean, it’s Indianapolis. We had a shot of winning this thing and the cards didn’t fall our way. I’m just happy to be here. Happy to have a shot.
“Disappointed we weren’t able to race for it at the end.”
A bitterly disappointed Newgarden congratulated Rossi for his effort and did not want to sound like he was eating sour grapes.
“I think we could have outraced anyone today at the end if we needed to. That’s all I was really asking for. We didn’t get that.”
“Today is gut wrenching just because I think I had a winning car.
“And when you know you have a winning car and you know you can win the thing and you go for it and it doesn’t happen, you know, because of a strategy call, it’s kind of tough.”