CAUTION-FREE RACE AT MID-OHIO RESULTS IN HARD-FOUGHT FINISHES FOR ED CARPENTER RACING
Jordan King Matches Best Road Course Finish of the Year of 12th; Spencer Pigot Races Up to 13th
(LEXINGTON, Ohio) July 29, 2018 – Race Notes
– In a stark contrast from the practice and qualifying sessions leading up to today’s race at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course, not a single car ventured off the circuit and the race remained caution-free for the duration. It was up to Jordan King and Spencer Pigot to race their way through the field over the course of today’s 90 green-flag laps and each delivered. King would finish 12th, matching his best road course result of the year. Pigot would be one of the biggest movers during the race, gaining five positions from the start to finish 13th.
– The weekend had been off to solid start for Pigot, who had lap times in the Top 5 in the first two practice sessions on Friday. King concentrated on learning the road course as he had not been on the 2.258-mile, 13-turn circuit until Friday morning’s first practice session. Both were assigned to Group 2 of qualifying yesterday, but a red flag shortened the available time they had to turn a fast lap on Firestone’s red Firehawk tires to less than four minutes. Even with the abbreviated time, King was still able to set his fastest lap of the weekend at 123.285 mph. Pigot struggled to maintain a gap, having to lift on two fast laps as he approached another competitor. King would start 16th today while Pigot would be one row behind in 18th.
– In the first three turns of the race, King passed five cars to move up to 11th. Pigot was boxed in on the start and with no space around him, he dropped one position to 19th. King gained two additional positions the next lap, then settled into 8th as Max Chilton had to serve a drive-through penalty. Pigot has just passed Charlie Kimball for 18th when Takuma Sato hit the side of the No. 21. There was no damage to Pigot’s car, but he would lose the position he just gained. Pigot remained focused, getting past both Kimball and Sato in the following two laps to move into 17th. The 16th position became his when Ed Jones made an early pit stop.
– Though up three positions from the start, Pigot was battling with understeer. He made his first pit stop on Lap 12 for a front wing adjustment and a set of sticker black Firehawks. Pigot would rejoin the race in the 20th position.
– King made his first stop three laps later, electing for another set of red tires. A slight miscue with one of the tires had the No. 20 back up on the airjack a second time, but the problem was quickly rectified and King was on his way. However, he would lose two positions and be running 10th after the stop.
– Though they were on different tire compounds, both King and Pigot struggled with grip during their second stints. They each picked up a position when Rene Binder made a pit stop with King moving into 9th and Pigot to 19th. Pigot made his second stop on Lap 38, switching back to red tires. King was in just two laps later on Lap 40 to begin his time on black tires.
– After their stops, King cycled out in 10th while Pigot was again back to 20th. On blacks, King was not able to hold off Zach Veach and Marco Andretti who were on red tires. He dropped down to 12th, where he would remain through the end of his stint.
– Pigot, on red tires, was able to surge forward. Over the next 20 laps, he gained seven positions, racing his way up to 13th. Though he had been a lap down, he was the first car behind race leader and eventual winner Alexander Rossi. Pigot regained a lead-lap standing as Rossi stopped on Lap 59.
– Both Pigot and King would make their final stops on Lap 64. King took a set of sticker reds and remained in the 12th position. Pigot took scuffed reds, coming out 14th behind Ed Jones, who still needed to make his final pit stop. Once Jones stopped on Lap 78, Pigot moved into 13th. The Fuzzy’s Vodka drivers continued to close the gaps to the cars in front of them all the way to the checkered flag, but retained their positions. King earned the 12th finishing position and Pigot would finish 13th.
– Four races remain in the 2018 Verizon IndyCar Series season. Team owner Ed Carpenter will step back into the No. 20 Fuzzy’s Vodka Chevrolet for the next two rounds, the oval events at Pocono Raceway and Gateway Motorsports Park. King’s next event will be Indy car’s return to Portland International Raceway on Labor Day weekend. As full-time driver for ECR, Pigot will compete in each event in his No. 21 Fuzzy’s Vodka Chevrolet.
JORDAN KING, No. 20 Fuzzy’s Vodka Chevrolet, Finished 12th: “I sent it on the first couple of corners! That was really good fun, a bit of wheel-banging and running side-by-side with a few people. We got up to 9th in those first two laps. Our pace was pretty good during the race, I don’t think we were a million miles off at all. We had a bit of a slow first pit stop and lost a few places there, then we just seemed to struggle a bit on out laps. Those are the two areas where we lost the time; otherwise, I think we would have been a bit higher up. We still have a bit of work that we need to do, but overall it was a good race!”
SPENCER PIGOT, No. 21 Fuzzy’s Vodka Chevrolet, Finished 13th: “It was a bit of a tough start of the race. We didn’t get a great start and got kind of boxed in. We weren’t able to move up early on like we had hoped for. We struggled with the black tires, but once we put the reds on again, the car was pretty good. We were able to make passes and fight our way up to 13th. The second half of the race wasn’t too bad, but we would have liked to have a different first half. We’ve had a very solid last five or six weekends and a lot of positives to take away. We will work to put it to good use for the last races!”
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