Josef Newgarden OK After Hard Crash During Road America Qualifying

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Josef Newgarden OK After Hard Crash in QualifyingNBCUniversal/Peacock

In the final moments of Fast Six qualifying on Saturday for the IndyCar XPEL Grand Prix at Road America, Indy 500 winner Josef Newgarden lost control on a slick track when his left rear wheel hit a patch of wet track, causing him to spin on entry and hit hard into the SAFER barrier.

Team Penske reports that Newgarden is okay and has been released from the infield car center after exiting his No. 2 PPG Chevrolet under his own power. Earlier in the day, Road America saw massive rainfall, and the wet track lent itself to a thinner racing line; as the track continued to dry, racers moved wider on the track. Newgarden's left rear tire hit a lane of wet track, sending him spinning and then barrelling backward into the SAFER barrier, which was luckily placed at the turn exit.


From the cockpit before exiting the vehicle, Newgarden apologized to his team, saying, "Sorry, damn it, I dropped a wheel."

This is the hardest hit Newgarden has experienced since his 2016 crash at Texas Motor Speedway, where he broke his hand and clavicle.

Newgarden was running fifth fastest at the time with just seconds left in the final qualifying stint.

On the other side of the pendulum, Linus Lundqvist, the Swedish rookie, captured his first pole after making it into his first Fast 12 and Fast Six of his career.

"There’s no better way to rebuild confidence than this," Lundqvist told NBC Sports.

Colton Herta captured second but momentarily believed that his time was deleted for not crossing the start/finish line before the red flag was deployed for Newgarden's crash.

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