Pato O_Ward at autograph session - BITNILE_com Grand Prix of Portland - By_ James Black

IndyCar: Lack of ‘blue flag’ an embarrassment for series – O’Ward

Pato O’Ward hammered IndyCar for the absence of move-over blue flag rules, calling it “embarrassing” for the NTT IndyCar Series.

–by Mark Cipolloni–

The current rules allow for cars that are a lap or more down to fight those on the lead lap, despite not racing for position.

It is customary around the world in most top-flight categories that wankers give way to those on the lead lap.

Pato O_Ward - BITNILE_com Grand Prix of Portland - By_ Joe Skibinski_
Pato O_Ward complains of lack of IndyCar blue-flag – BITNILE_com Grand Prix of Portland – By_ Joe Skibinski_

O’Ward was among those balked by wankers in the way in the Grand Prix of Portland, something he said hindered his chances of a podium finish.

The McLaren driver finished fourth behind race winner Alex Palou (Chip Ganassi Racing), teammate Felix Rosenqvist, and Scott Dixon (Chip Ganassi Racing).

Of the 25 cars that finished the race, eight of them finished a lap or more down, but if not for the cautions, almost the entire field would have been lapped

Speaking post race, O’Ward said Honda drivers raced other Honda drivers more fairly

The Mexican said Honda-powered entries allowed Scott Dixon to pass with relative ease but put up a fight for the Chevrolet-powered O’Ward.

“I was really happy with the car. I was very comfortable. I think we were one of the, or the fastest car on track for quite a bit of the race. We were just making hay,” said O’Ward.

“It’s just frustrating in a series like this where leaders have to be fighting the lappers in order for whoever it is that you’re fighting just to have a shot.

“For us, we were fighting Dixon and Rosenqvist for the podium, and obviously Dixon gets let by because he’s in a Honda, then we get to them, and they do everything in their power and make sure I blow all my push-to-pass to get by them. They blow all theirs.

“It just seems like their biggest accomplishment they want to do in a race day is wait for the leaders to come by and make their life a living hell.

“It’s frustrating. It’s embarrassing for the series. There should be a rule in place for that to not happen. It’s just destroying the chances of a good fight for a podium.

“I wasn’t the only one. Josef (Newgarden) and Scotty (McLaughlin) were getting held up by I believe it was (Marcus) Armstrong.

“It’s just frustrating. I get it, but they’re not going to get their lap back. (Let) the leaders by. Stop being an ass and let other people fight.”

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