Foster completes Indy NXT sweep at Laguna Seca

Louis Foster put in another flawless performance to capture his second Indy NXT victory at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna in as many days. The Andretti Global ace won by 4.4s over Caio Collet of HMD Motorsports, while title contender Jacob Abel was penalized for a clumsy challenge for third.

The start for the front-row drivers was identical to Saturday’s event, with Foster looking threatened by Caio Collet around the outside of the Turn 2 hairpin, but again fending him off. But this time, Reece Gold of HMD Motorsports didn’t drop a wheel in the dirt and retained third ahead of Jacob Abel (Abel Motorsports), Bryce Aron (Andretti) and Yuven Sundaramoorthy (Abel).

The big movers in the opening two laps were Myles Rowe (HMD Force Indy), up from 10th to seventh, Salvador de Alba Jr (Andretti Cape) up from 11th to eighth and Jamie Chadwick (Andretti), up from 14th to 11th.


In the opening five laps, Foster didn’t run and hide from Collet, opening the gap only to 1.5s, Collet apparently able to lap within 0.2s of the leader. That said, it wasn’t clear how much Foster had in hand. Almost 5s behind them, however, Gold was under heavy pressure from Abel, as the pair of them pulled away from Aron. The other interesting battle was Sundaramoorthy trying to retain sixth and defend from Rowe and de Alba.

On lap 13, Chadwick passed Roe for 10th but now had an 8.4s to make up and try and catch Jack William Miller. That gap effectively became zero a lap later when Callum Hedge spun and stalled at Turn 2 and the full course caution flew just before Hedge restarted his machine.

The lap 18 restart was relatively uneventful with no order changes in the top 10. However, on lap 21, Miller made an error that allowed Chadwick, Brooks, Roe and Ricardo Escotto to pass him. On lap 25, Roe suffered a right-rear suspension failure exiting Turn 9 and went into the gravel, but he was able to limp to the pits without causing a caution period.

On lap 27, Abel dived up the inside of Gold at the top of the Corkscrew, pushing Gold into the sand and sending him yumping over the kitty litter and breaking Gold’s suspension. Abel ran wide on the exit which allowed Aron to move up two places into third, but he didn’t need to as Race Control gave Abel a drive-through penalty.

Thus Sundaramoorthy moved up to fourth, and it was de Alba who claimed fifth as Rowe was losing pace. That allowed Chadwick and Brooks to move past him, and then Rowe went off after locking his right-front tire and puncturing it at Turn 11, and had to run a whole lap with only three functional wheels.

Missing all the action was Foster, cruising with a 4s lead over Collet, who had 15s over Aron. Foster had proven what he had in the tank back on lap 25, when he turned a 1m13.6221s, about 0.4s under Collet’s fastest.

Foster’s win and Abel’s penalty puts the Andretti driver 35 points in the lead in the championship.


Story originally appeared on Racer