|Josef Newgarden celebrates his 2nd career win with team owner Sarah Fisher|
TORONTO (15 June 2015) – Cue the champagne and confetti, because it was another very big weekend for Rising Star Racing as the Verizon IndyCar Series staged its annual visit to Canada for the Honda Indy Toronto through the city's downtown streets.
All three Rising Star Racing drivers, Josef Newgarden (Verizon IndyCar Series), Spencer Pigot (Indy Lights), and Neil Alberico (Pro Mazda) were in action as the IndyCar season raced through to its 10th consecutive weekend of on-track action.
For the second time this season, Newgarden posted an emphatic performance, leading 30 laps on his way to a big victory in Verizon IndyCar Series action for Carpenter Fisher Hartman Racing as he led a team 1-2 result. A key moment of Newgarden's race came when his CFH Racing team made the call to pit the No. 67 Hartman Oil Chevy a bit early as the conditions changed every lap. Shortly thereafter, a full course yellow was displayed with Newgarden taking advantage of the fortunate timing of the yellow to cycle back up through to the front of the field.
Despite some close quarters racing through the tight confines of the temporary Toronto street course in the final laps, Newgarden held on to claim his second victory of the season.
|Newgarden crosses the finish line earlier this year at Barber|
"I'm so happy we were able to get a win, but a 1-2 is just amazing," said Newgarden, of Carpenter Fisher Hartman Racing's 1-2 Toronto team finish. "I'm super happy for the whole group. Just an amazing team effort – I can't believe we had a 1-2. It got a little close there with Luca (Fillipi, CFH Racing teammate), but we were really just trying to keep up after we got into the final stint. I got a little bit of lapped traffic, but I couldn't do anything with the lapped traffic, but they wanted me to because of everyone that was coming. It's close racing and, for sure, I got a little lucky, too, on that yellow. But you can't discount that because it was an amazing effort by this crew at CFH Racing. They gave me amazing pit stops and a car to win. I'm definitely excited because this is Toronto and this is an IndyCar town."
|Spencer Pigot celebrates the first of two wins at Toronto|
The win was the second of the day and third of the weekend for Rising Star Racing after Pigot returned to race-winning form to score two big race wins in Indy Lights competition.
After scoring victory in Saturday's opening salvo of the double-header weekend, Pigot had to beat not only the competition, but also the conditions on Sunday as he emerged from a race that saw countless offs and contact following tricky and variable conditions from start to finish. Just two cars remained on the lead lap of the race when the checkered flag flew and Pigot, who never put a wheel wrong in the challenging wet track conditions, led flag-to-flag to take his second victory of the weekend.
The double-win weekend is the second of the season for the Indy Lights series rookie who also took a double win at Barber Motorsports Park earlier this year. Pigot scored the 2014 Pro Mazda championship and is hoping to make 2015 another championship season.
"It was very tricky out there," said Pigot. "It was fun driving in the rain, in all the different conditions with all the pavement changes. We started on new Cooper tires which gave us as much grip as they could, but that's a big ask with all the patches on the track. I think everyone either went around or almost went around. A few times, I was pointed toward the wall and had to back out of the throttle. If you take your eyes off the road or your mind off what you're doing, you're going to have issues. Any little bit of over-aggression and you'll be sliding in places you didn't think possible. To get two wins – and to get some points back – is great for the Juncos team. A huge thank you to Mazda, Mockett, The Stutz, BAD, D-A Lubricant Company, Mobe and Rising Star Racing, and everyone else that's helped me get here."
Unfortunately the good fortune didn't extend to the entire Rising Star Racing effort in Toronto, as Alberico suffered through a weekend to forget in the Pro Mazda double-header. In both Pro Mazda races, Alberico was involved in on track incidents that took the No. 3 Cape Motorsports with Wayne Taylor Racing entry out of the race early.
"It was a tough weekend to say the least," rued Alberico. "But I'm super happy for my fellow Rising Star Racing drivers on their wins today. Congratulations to Josef and Spencer! I'm looking forward to getting my Cape Motorsports with Wayne Taylor Racing car back on top!"
Rising Star Racing has developed marketing partnerships with MOBÃ‰, D-A Lubricant Company, cmcglobal and Barnes & Thornburg.
Alberico now looks forward to the next Pro Mazda race at Iowa Speedway on July 17-18.
Pigot will next be in action when Indy Lights returns to the Milwaukee Mile on July 11-12, while Newgarden will return to Verizon IndyCar Series competition in two weeks at Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California on June 26-27.
For additional information: www.risingstarracing.com
Rising Star Racing