McLaughlin ‘hit everything but the pace car’ en route to second place at Laguna Seca

By his own calculation, Scott McLaughlin “hit everything but the pace car” on Sunday at Laguna Seca, but it didn’t stop him earning a second-place finish that vaulted him from fifth to third in the championship.

“For me, [third in the points] is a pride thing,” said McLaughlin, whose previous best IndyCar championship finish was fourth last year.

“More importantly, we wanted to be the top Chevy team, beat McLaren, and we did that. I wanted to beat my teammates. Ultimately ticked both those goals.

“I talk about beating our teammates… we have a seriously good camaraderie between the three of us. It’s very competitive. It gets tense at times. That’s what you want in a relationship. I think we all push each other to new levels. To beat those two is a proud moment. [I’m] super-pumped.”


McLaughlin’s No. 3 Team Penske Chevy found itself in the vicinity of several of Sunday’s many incidents, and the New Zealander said that the key to the afternoon was to make the most of the things that he and the team could control, and try not to get thrown off his game by the many things that they couldn’t.

“I think I had one really good restart where I picked off sort of six or seven cars,” he said. “I was just hauling. So much fun.

“But it was wild. I mean, for me as a driver, just thinking of my race, it was probably the most crazy race I’ve ever had in my career just from an up-and-down perspective. It probably takes me back to the year I lost the Supercars championship for the first time. Up and down, penalties, things you could avoid and couldn’t avoid. It was just nuts.

“It was peak IndyCar. To be able to come back from that is pretty cool.”

Story originally appeared on Racer