ED CARPENTER RACING QUALIFIES FOR FIRST OF TWO RACES IN DETROIT
Unique Schedule Sees Newgarden, Pigot Race Both Saturday and Sunday
(DETROIT) June 3, 2016 – Qualifying Notes
– Ed Carpenter Racing has expanded back to a two-car team, beginning with this weekend’s Chevrolet Dual in Detroit. Spencer Pigot has joined full-time ECR driver Josef Newgarden to round out the Speedway, Ind.-based team’s lineup this weekend.
– It was announced on Thursday that Pigot would join Ed Carpenter Racing as driver of the No. 20 Fuzzy’s Ultra Premium Vodka Chevrolet for the remaining road and street courses races on the 2016 schedule. The 22-year-old is a rookie in the Verizon IndyCar Series, but is the reigning Indy Lights champion. Team owner Ed Carpenter will continue to drive the No. 20 on the ovals.
– The Dual in Detroit will take place at the temporary street course is located on Belle Isle, an island in the middle of the Detroit River between Detroit and Windsor, Ontario, Canada. It plays host to the only doubleheader on the IndyCar calendar, featuring one full points-paying race on Saturday and another on Sunday.
– Newgarden was 8th quick in morning practice and expected to easily advance to the second round of qualifications. The tricky 2.35-mile, 14-turn street course had other plans for the No. 21 Preferred Freezer Services Chevrolet. Newgarden was sitting 3rd on the speed chart with two minutes left to go in the session when a brush with the wall caused the right rear tire to go down. The 25-year-old was forced to pit, but there was not enough time to return to the race track. He was forced to sit and watch as he was bumped from advancing by two tenths of a second. Newgarden will start 14th in tomorrow’s Dual.
– Pigot met the Detroit circuit for the first time in this morning’s one hour and 15 minute practice session. Despite having come up through the Mazda Road to Indy, Pigot had never ran on the Belle Isle track before. He was able to complete 28 laps of practice in the session and turned another six in qualifications. He will start 21st tomorrow in his first race with Ed Carpenter Racing and only fourth Verizon IndyCar Series race overall.
– Newgarden sits fourth in the Verizon IndyCar Series point standings following his third place finish in last weekend’s 100th Running of the Indianapolis 500. He started in the middle of the front row and led 14 laps in the closing stages of the race before ultimately finishing 3rd. Pigot took the checkered flag in the 25th position in his first Indianapolis 500.
– Tomorrow’s Dual will be broadcast live on ABC beginning at 3 p.m. ET.
JOSEF NEWGARDEN, NO. 21 PREFERRED FREEZER SERVICES CHEVROLET, QUALIFIED 14TH: “It was a tough day. I apologize to my guys, I set us back for tomorrow with that run. We had a good car and probably should have been fast enough to get into the top six today, I just tagged the wall and that caused the tire pressure to go down on the right rear. I wasn’t able to get my optimum lap on the reds. It’s tougher when you do something like that, it was my fault. Now we have to get it right for tomorrow and I’m sure we’ll have a car that can fight for the win.”
SPENCER PIGOT, NO. 20 FUZZY’S AWARD WINNING VODKA CHEVROLET, QUALIFIED 21ST: “It’s good to be back in a car, it is a lot earlier than I expected so that’s good! I’m having a good time with the team, but it was a tough day. This track is pretty difficult so there’s a lot to learn. It’s a new track and I’m in a new car, so I’m just trying to get up to speed with everything and figure it all out!”
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