Tyler Reddick scores win in overtime at Indianapolis Road Course
SPEEDWAY, Ind. — The NASCAR Cup Series has a new road course conqueror.
Tyler Reddick survived a wild overtime battle against Ross Chastain, who happened to be under penalty for sneaking into the first turn, to win Sunday’s Verizon 200 at the Brickyard.
Reddick’s victory in the NASCAR Cup Series at the 2,439-mile, 14-turn Indianapolis Motor Speedway was his second this month, the second of his career and the second on a road course.
There was a fundamental difference between Reddick’s victory at Brickyard and his victory on July 3 at Road America. Between the two wins, Reddick Announced would leave Richard Childress Racing for 23XI Racing after the 2023 season.
But Reddick proved Sunday that lame ducks can still go fast.
“Well, we know what we’re capable of, and we did it at Road America,” said Reddick, who led a race-high 38 laps on Sunday. “Certainly (the announcement) was a little bump in the road, but we went out and won a fair race a couple of weeks ago, and if we don’t change anything, we keep working very, very hard, we find a way back. to Victory Lane.
“I am very happy to be able to do it here in Indianapolis. This is a really special place to compete, and I’m very excited to kiss the bricks here soon and very excited that we’ve gotten (sponsor) 3CHI their hometown victory.”
After a multi-car melee at Turn 1 sent the race into overtime and dashed the hopes of Chase Elliott, who had restarted second to Reddick on Lap 80, Reddick lined up alongside AJ Allmendinger for the restart. extra time.
Lining up fifth on lap 85, Chastain went wide on the restart and opted for the slip road past the corner. He returned to the track after exchanging the lead with Reddick during the first lap of overtime.
Reddick was surprised to see Chastain’s unorthodox strategy.
“I was like, ‘Uh-oh,'” Reddick said. “But that was a scenario that had been talked about. If you get bottled up, what do you do? Take the access road. I couldn’t believe he beat me to it. He was waiting to see if he was going to get a penalty, because he didn’t want to get him out of the way and make his race worse than it was.
“Yeah, I was really surprised by that, but hey, we made it work. Hats off to Ross for trying to do that, but I’m really glad it didn’t work out, because I would have been pretty pissed off.”
NASCAR frowned at Chastain’s artifice and court a 30-second penalty that dropped him to 27th at the end, lifting Daytona 500 winner Austin Cindric to second.
“I just try not to be in the chaos there at Turn 1,” Chastain said. “I figured we were four wide and I couldn’t go any further to the right, and I decided to take the NASCAR access lane.
“Just pure reaction there, for our Worldwide Express Chevy. I took it in practice on the way out, going over turn 1… Yeah, I just wanted to not get hit, and I merged back where I merged.
Harrison Burton came home third, followed by Todd Gilliland and Bubba Wallace. The results were career best for Burton and Gilliland, and with Cindric, it marked the first time since 1994 at Pocono that three rookies finished in the top five in a Cup race.
(The three rookies at Pocono were Joe Nemechek and Jeff Burton and Ward Burton, Harrison Burton’s father and uncle, respectively.)
Despite a multitude of early spins, the first caution for a crash in Sunday’s race didn’t come until lap 62, setting the stage for the chaos that followed.
After green-flag pit stops, Reddick had built a more than three-second lead over Christopher Bell when Kyle Larson’s Chevrolet spun out of control in Turn 1 and blindsided Ty Dillon’s Chevy with an impact that shook the bones.
The resulting caution narrowed the field and set up a restart on lap 65 with Reddick in the lead and Bell alongside him in the outside lane and Ryan Blaney in third.
The outside lane on that restart and the next two proved to be anathema to the drivers running second. Bell was dragged backwards on the lap 65 restart and ultimately caused the fourth caution with a blown right front tire that scattered debris on the track.
Elliott, who was trailing Reddick before that caution, spun into a three-wide sandwich at Turn 1 with Blaney and William Byron on the lap 80 restart. And defending race winner AJ Allmendinger, who he had driven his No. 16 Chevrolet to second despite a malfunctioning cold suit, was forced to go out on the overtime restart and dropped to seventh at the end.
Blaney was also a victim of the late restart, spinning into Turn 1 and finishing 26th after spending most of the afternoon in the top five and leading 17 laps, tied for second with Bell. That mishap cost Blaney a chance to put more distance in the standings between himself and Martin Truex Jr.
Blaney and Truex rank 15th and 16th, respectively, in the playoff standings with four races remaining in the regular season. After Sunday’s race, Blaney leads Truex by 25 points.
This story will be updated.