PATO O’WARD PUTS CHEVROLET IN VICTORY LANE AT MID-OHIOS

CHEVROLET IN NTT INDYCAR SERIES HONDA INDY 200 AT MID-OHIO MID-OHIO SPORTS CAR COURSE LEXINGTON, OHIO TEAM CHEVY POST RACE RECAP JULY 7, 2024 SCOTT MCLAUGHLIN THIRD PLACE FINISH GIVES CHEVROLET TWO PODIUM SPOTS FOR DEBUT OF INDYCAR HYBRID POWER UNIT Pato O Ward, No. 5 Arrow McLaren Chevrolet, won his second race of the 2024 NTT INDYCAR Series season with a hard-fought victory today at the debut of the INDYCAR Hybrid Power UnitScott McLaughlin, No. 3 Sonsio Team Penske Chevrolet, finished third to give Chevrolet two spots on the podium for the Honda Indy 200 at Mid-OhioTeam Chevy drivers scored five of the top-10 drivers. In addition to O’Ward and McLaughlin, Alexander Rossi, No. 7 Arrow McLaren Chevrolet – 7th; Christian Rassmussen, No. 20 Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet – 9th and Santino Ferrucci, No. 14 AJ Foyt Racing Chevrolet – 10thIt is the 5th win of the season for Team Chevy and 116th win since the 2.2-liter V6 engine formula was introduced in 2012Up next for Chevrolet in the NTT INDYCAR Series will be the Hy-Vee INDYCAR Race Weekend at Iowa Speedway, July 12-14, 2024 LEXINGTON, Ohio – After missing the pole by just .0024 of a second, Pato O’Ward was a determined young man as he climbed in his No. 5 Arrow McLaren Chevrolet for the start of today’s Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. O’Ward stayed firmly in second, only giving up the spot during pit stop cycles during the 80-lap race that saw only one caution flag period for a car stopped on course before the race started. INDYCAR race control counted two caution laps before turning the 27-car field loose.  After the green flew on lap three, the race was uninterrupted until the checkered flag flew. O’Ward took the lead during the final pit stop cycle of the day on lap 57 executing the perfect undercut as the leader left pit lane one lap after O’Ward. It was the second win of the season for O’Ward and the sixth of his NTT INDYCAR Series career. Today’s third place finish was the third podium for McLaughlin this season including a win earlier in the season at Barber Motorsports Park.  Team Chevy and the INDYCAR Series travel next to Iowa Speedway for the Hy-Vee INDYCAR Race Weekend July 12-14, 2024          TEAM CHEVY TOP-10 RACE RESULTS:Pos. Driver1st     Pato O’Ward3rd     Scott McLaughlin6th    Alexander Rossi9th     Christian Rasmussen10th    Santino Ferrucci WHAT THEY’RE SAYING (QUOTES)Mark Stielow, Director Motorsports Competition Programs for General Motors:“What an exciting race today at Mid-Ohio! Congratulations to Pato O’Ward, Gavin Ward and the entire No. 5 Arrow McLaren Chevrolet team on their outstanding win. Pato drove a skilled, patient race while his crew executed flawlessly on pit lane. It was a true team win.   “There were great battles throughout the field. With Scott McLaughlin bringing the No. 3 Team Penske Chevrolet to the finish in third, it is very rewarding for everyone on the Chevrolet engineering side along with our teams who have all put in countless hours to reach today’s race to have two drivers on the podium for debut of the INDYCAR Hybrid Power Unit.” Santino Ferrucci, No. 14 AJ Foyt Racing Chevrolet, Finished : “A solid day for us here at AJ Foyt Racing. Honestly, the boys did a phenomenal job in pit lane, and I could not have done it without them doing that. We had the right strategy and great pit stops so all I did was drive the car. We had a great setup on the Sexton Properties Chevrolet and had pace and we were able to move it forward. Sting Ray had a solid race too so it’s all good stuff.” Sting Ray Robb, No. 41 AJ Foyt Racing Chevrolet:  “Really happy with the result today. I think that, considering where we started the weekend, that was, that was really good. The team, honestly, it was all up to them. I didn’t pass hardly any cars on track. It was all in the pit cycle. So good in and out laps, good pit stops, great strategy. That’s how we moved the Goodheart/Pray.com Chevrolet forward today. Super proud of Santino as well. P 10– another top-10 result for him is really good. I pretty much just watched him the whole race. Tried to hook a tow rope up to the back of his car and let him pull me along. But I think that with a few more little changes here and there, we could be in the top 10 alongside him. So hopefully that’s coming soon.” Pato O’Ward, No. 5 Arrow McLaren Chevrolet, RACE WINNER:YOU HAVE MADE YOUR WAY TO VICTORY LANE AGAIN, WHAT ARE THE FEELINGS?“Yeah, that was a hard-fought race.  We were really, really strong on the reds.  Palou was really, really strong on the blacks.  So, all I needed to do was just kind of stay at bay in the first stint and then come into the pits and put those reds on and try and close the gap.  Then get him on the pit sequence or on track, but great job by the team.  Ahhh, it’s been a while.  I know we won St. Pete, but this is a proper win, and we earned this one this weekend.” IS THIS THE PRODUCT OF THE EFFORT AND HARD WORK BEING PUT IN BY THIS PROGRAM?“Yeah, I felt very comfortable with the car this weekend.  From the second practice going into qualifying, we executed, and they put a really strong car under me for the race. So, hats off to Arrow McLaren, they gave me a rocket.” Nolan Siegel, No. 6 Arrow McLaren Chevrolet: “I’m a little disappointed with the result today. I think that the pace in our No. 6 NTT DATA Arrow McLaren Chevrolet was good and our execution was good. We were aggressive on strategy and it just didn’t work out. Looking back, there was no way to know how it was going to play out in the moment. I don’t think there were any mistakes that were made; it just didn’t work out. I’m happy with the pace and the progress that we’ve made. The results will come soon. Of course, congratulations to Pato and the team for a well-deserved win.” Alexander Rossi, No. 7 Arrow McLaren Chevrolet, Finished : “First of all, congrats to Pato and the No. 5 Arrow McLaren Chevrolet crew. It’s been a long time coming for them, so that’s very cool. It was a bit of a boring day for us. I made a mistake on lap one, which put us a couple spots behind where we started. Then, we were just trying to recover the rest of the day. It was very difficult to pass. Overall, the No. 7 VELO Arrow McLaren Chevrolet was pretty good and our pit stops were good, as usual. It was ultimately a good day for the team and good points for us. We’ll move on to Iowa.” Gavin Ward, Team Principal at Arrow McLaren:     “It’s nice to have a win this season that we can celebrate the day of. I was thinking in the closing laps how big this would be for the team. This team has worked so hard throughout the offseason on the hybrid program; drivers, engineers, mechanics, everybody. Every single person on this team has put in so much work. “It’s been the busiest year in the history of this team, and it’s been a heck of a slog these last few months. It’s great to show what the team is capable of. It was a beautifully executed drive by Pato, and a beautifully executed race from the stand and in pit lane.  “Alexander drove a good race. It was obviously very difficult to make much ground up around this place today, but he did make up some ground. I thought Nolan ran a really smart race, but ultimately the strategy didn’t really work. That car had plenty more pace, and I think our potential was quite a bit higher. “Every race is a chance for us to learn and overall I’m very happy. The team should be really, really, really proud of themselves.” Christian Rasmussen, No. 20 Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet, Finished 9th :“That was great. I knew we had a good car after qualifying so I just wanted to execute today. Have a clean day and see what we could get out of it. P9 at the end of the day is good for us. It showed the development we have done this year especially with everything new this weekend with the hybrid unit. It’s been super super smooth with the transition. Just very happy with the result today.” Rinus VeeKay, No. 21 Ed Carpenter Racing Chevrolet:“We knew it was going to be a tough day starting so far back. We missed it on the strategy a bit as well, which makes it even harder here. Mid-Ohio is one of those tracks where it is tough to pass if there are no yellows and the field gets strung out, which is what happened today. Ready to get to an oval next weekend and see what we can do there!” Agustin Canapino, No. 78 Juncos Hollinger Racing Chevrolet, Finished 22nd:“We finished the race P22. Unfortunately we had no luck with no yellows and the strategy. I think we had a decent race, but all green laps was a difficult. But we finished. We see the checkered flag. We are going to try our luck next weekend.” Romain Grojean, No. 77 Juncos Hollinger Racing Chevrolet, Finished 23rd Josef Newgarden, No. 2 Team Penske Chevrolet, Finished 25th:REGARDING THE PIT ROAD SPEEDING PENALTY AND A SENSOR“Yeah, something changed, some sort of software issue.  We were plenty safe on our procedure, it just looks like it overshoots. I do not know what caused it, we don’t know what caused it. Some sort of software issue because the speed was identical on both speeding penalties. So, for some reason it changed from the first two and started overshooting. I am not sure what happened, but we will try and diagnose it and understand it for the future, so it doesn’t happen again.” HOW DID YOUR RACE GO BEFORE THAT SITUATION?“It was a good day for starting as far back (as we did).  We just got behind very early this weekend.  We started pretty far off and we were not happy where we came off the truck and then it just took too long to get where we needed it to be.  We sort of half got there by qualifying and we sort of fully got there by the race, but you certainly can’t start the weekend that far behind.  So, I was really proud of the guys. They did a great job, good pit stops, we were just too far behind this weekend to catch up.” ARE YOU LOOKING FORWARD TO KNOCKING EVERYTHING OFF AND GOING TO IOWA?“Not really. Iowa is great but I am looking forward to everything else.  We have to be strong everywhere. We can’t pick and piece just tracks here and there, its got to be everywhere.” Scott McLaughlin, No. 3 Team Penske Chevrolet, Finished 3rd:LONG GREEN FLAG RUNS TODAY, WHAT WERE CONDITIONS LIKE OUT THERE?“Yeah, it was hard.  We were in no man’s land there, so I had my own race and was just playing with the hybrid a bit and learning it as well. I am just really proud of everyone on this Sonsio Protection Chevy. We have been up and down all year and it’s nice to get a solid result.  Hopefully we can build on to this.  Now we go to two ovals, two ovals that I really enjoy and just keep building some momentum.” YOUR CREW CAME OVER THE RADIO AND SAID YOU WERE DOING A PERFECT JOB DURING THE RACE. HOW RELIEVING IS THAT AS A DRIVER? “Its nice. Your confidence gets knocked around when you make a couple of mistakes here and there.  You come in with a lot of expectation and you want to be good every weekend, but ultimately you are human, and everyone makes mistakes. But as I have said, I have a great team behind me, and we have to keep pushing on and keep working. There are plenty of races left in the season and we can keep on improving and see where we are at.” Will Power, No. 12 Team Penske Chevrolet, Finished 11th:“Solid day for the Verizon Chevy team. After our issue in qualifying we needed to do something off-strategy, so we started on the alternate tires. And we were able to make them work better than most, it seemed. Just maximized our day as best we could by running on the primaries the rest of the way. Good day on pit lane too. On to Iowa.” PATO O’WARD, NO. 5 ARROW MCLAREN CHEVROLET AND SCOTT MCLAUGHLIN, NO. 3 SONSIO TEAM PENSKE CHEVROLET – End of Day Press Conference:Pato O’WardPress Conference THE MODERATOR: We continue on with this year’s champion of the Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio presented by the 2025 Civic Hybrid and Pato O’Ward, who led 24 of the 80 laps today, of course driver of the No. 5 Arrow McLaren Chevrolet, first win on the track in 31 races, obviously the second win in 2024, sixth career win, climb into third in the points standings, just 70 points back out of the championship. Congratulations. Yes, St. Pete happened, you got the win, but this maybe feels a little different. PATO O’WARD: No, this feels like the first win of the season. I know St. Pete we were P2 and ultimately ended up getting the win because Penske cheated, and yeah, the 500 was two corners short. But we really pushed it. I was pushing so hard. Watching Palou kind of trying to run away with it in the first stint, I said no way, no way. For some reason they are so quick on the primes, the Ganassi cars. They’re in a different stratosphere. But I knew as soon as we got the reds on, that was my chance to close the gap and ultimately beat him. I knew that was the objective and just tried to keep him at a somewhat manageable distance. I’m super stoked. I’m so proud of the team. All my 5 guys, they’ve been working so hard. It just feels like we’ve had heartbreak after heartbreak after heartbreak and we’ve obviously had a tough battle trying to figure out this new tire this year. Yeah, it feels so good to give this to them. I know they’re as happy as I am today, and we earned it. No one gave it to us. We had to earn it. Yeah, it feels really good. Q. Pato, that lap when Alex came into the pits, how hard were you pushing on that out lap? What was your mentality? You know full well that he might come out right ahead of you or right behind you. How hard was that out lap trying to get past Palou on the pit — PATO O’WARD: Yeah, if I had a chance to get by him, it was going to be either on the out lap of him with new tires or on the pit stop sequence. We ultimately ended up getting him kind of halfway between both. But yeah, it’s just so competitive. Obviously I haven’t watched the race. I don’t know how much battles there were in the back, but it’s become so tough to get by people, and when you’re up at the front and you don’t really have much of an advantage to another car, you can’t get by them. You saw ending the race that we were stuck behind Kyffin and I think it was Canapino. No matter if you catch them by a few tenths a lap, but once you get there, you can’t do anything. It definitely made me sweat a little bit more for sure, just because we were basically just stuck in line, and Palou was on my bumper, I was on Kyffin’s, and it was just all about not making mistakes and pedaling it there to the end. Q. Going into the last few laps when you’re behind Kyffin and Canapino, how difficult was it to keep your emotions in check knowing, hey, we need to get around these guys but you can’t take too much of a risk, yet Palou is right there and if something bad happens he gets by you? PATO O’WARD: Yeah, no, for sure. But I put myself in being behind the leader, and I would have picked my position every single time because it’s just more of a pain to actually get by somebody. For all I knew, I just had to minimize mistakes. This weekend really has been very smooth I would say. Like we executed in qualifying, but as soon as we were done in P2, I told the guys, this is the best car that you’ve given me all year. Like I have something to battle with. I have something to challenge with and to execute in qualifying without feeling like I have a knife up to my throat. We showed that. We were .0024 for pole, and then in the race we maximized where our car was stronger, and that’s how we got it done. Q. Pato, more to the point on going by Palou, are you sitting there thinking, yippee? You’re looking for him, I would think, out of the corner of your eye; where is he coming out of the pits. What is the emotion you’re feeling, like yippee or let’s get on it? Explain that. PATO O’WARD: I’ll tell you exactly what I was saying in my head. Coming out of 13, I saw him launching from the box, and then I said, I got his ass. Yeah. That was it. Q. What is that like, though, in a hard-fought race like that to go by him? You kind of touched on it, but you’ve been working for that moment. PATO O’WARD: The hard part is to get by the guy. After that, then it turns more into a battle within yourself I would say, just like really hitting your marks all the time, not making any mistakes. They were so strong on primes, I knew that he was going to be really putting on the pressure the last stint because it was a new tire race, it wasn’t a red race. Yeah, it was good. Q. You went to the Push-to-Pass ATM, as I call it, the last — PATO O’WARD: Oh, I was ripping through it. He was, too. Q. At the end of the race are you thinking more to use the Push-to-Pass or the regen? PATO O’WARD: Push-to-Pass is more powerful because it lasts longer, but I was using both. Q. You said out there at the start of the press conference that it was fun winning the way you did because in the first stint he was pulling away, and in the second stint getting back to him on alternates and no yellows in the race, to get by him must be fun for you to get it done this way? PATO O’WARD: Absolutely, it just feels really good. It feels like such a hard-fought race. I have to say, it’s the first race in my career where I didn’t really have a chance to kind of take a seat when I got out of the car, but when I was doing the NBC interview with Georgia, quickly after that I had to take a seat. I don’t use the cool suit. I know a lot of these guys do. It just gets so warm in there, so warm, and it’s so physical. It’s a lot more physical than I thought. We were fuel saving the whole race, but it felt like a full push. It really did, and every lap was just all about not making any mistakes because Palou wasn’t making any mistakes, either. I knew we had to be pretty much perfect to have an opportunity. Q. With the race being so close, which I’m sure they always are, is there a critical situation or critical decision that you can think of that you and your team made that really made the difference in you winning today? PATO O’WARD: I would say it’s just really pinpointing where we were stronger. Like I mentioned, they were stronger on the primes. They’ve always been stronger on the primes. We’ve never really had a chance against them on the primes. But when we were finishing out our red stint, I had really, I feel like — I wouldn’t say figured them out, but I definitely feel stronger on those usually more than on the prime, and that was where I said, hmm, let’s just see how it plays out. I saw him coming to me pretty aggressively at the end of the second stint, and I just saw the doors open to an opportunity, and I was like, we have to take it. I knew if I got in front of him, it was going to be a battle to the end, but it’s a lot better to battle to the end and you be in front than having to pass him because at that point you just can’t get by anybody. Q. Pato, if Palou didn’t have the issue exiting the pits, when do you think you would have passed him late in the race because you were catching him before the stop? PATO O’WARD: Yeah, but we also had an issue on the first stop not to launch and get into Malukas’s way. He had a bad stop on the second one but we had a bad stop on the first one. So it just played out. Q. The rest of the race going green after the first three laps, were you expecting it to go green all the way? How much more difficult did that make the race? PATO O’WARD: I was shocked that it was all green, no yellows, but it just makes it more physical for us, to be honest, and obviously in terms of strategy, it doesn’t turn as much into like a roll of the dice, which I feel like more times than not we’re on the bad end of that, so it was really nice to just, like — yeah, have a good one. Q. Pato, did you feel happy when you found Palou took the same tires throughout the second stint for reds? PATO O’WARD: Yeah, I think that’s probably what gave us the opportunity I would say. Who knows; it’s hard to say how much — how it would have played out in the other scenario. But yeah, we beat him on the same strategy, same everything, which makes it feel obviously that much sweeter because that 10 car has been the car to beat, and it still is the car to beat all year. They’ve been very, very strong, very strong driver with extremely strong team. That’s who we’re chasing at the moment. Q. I wonder if you could give us some insight or reflect on how the year has gone from your perspective a little bit from inside the team. It’s been obviously — I guess it was a difficult first half of the season for you, but you’ve had five top-10 finishes now and you’re the first driver to win on a street course and a road course this year. PATO O’WARD: Yeah, I would say it started well and then it quickly fell apart for not just one race but for a few. Then the 500 kind of gave us a breath of fresh air in a weird way. It was pretty devastating to just be two corners short, but ultimately gave us that boost that we’re — we were just a hair to win it. A testament to all the hard work that’s gone in the off-season, and a lot of it does go into the Indy 500, and it’s always really good to see that we’ve very strong there, and I would expect it to be the same next year. But this year it’s been more of a tough battle, I would say, in road courses, which usually have been our strong suit, so now with the hybrid, with the extra weight, I just think the way we work together and to kind of really extract the most out of this new package was very refreshing, and I think it’s a great boost for all of us to kind of drive us forward. Was this race No. 9? This is race No. 9, so we barely got over halfway. There’s still so much racing to go. I know I’m very strong in ovals, and there’s a lot of ovals left. I have a lot of faith in the team that they’re going to to give me a good car to battle it out in those, and yeah, I think the next one to really try and maximize a lot of points on the table is Iowa. It’s a repave, it’s different, and we need to stay on top of it. Q. How do you feel about the hybrid going into Iowa and how that might impact that race weekend and what that might look like for fans watching? PATO O’WARD: I would say the hybrid, it really doesn’t do anything on ovals. It does more on road courses and street courses. It obviously has added the weight; how is the deg going to be. I was surprised to see the deg, how good it was today. There was really no deg. You were as quick at the end of the stint with the first part of the stint, which I feel like has been very hit-or-miss all year. You don’t really know what to get. Yeah, that was very good to see for this weekend, and yeah, Iowa, I know we tested with I believe more downforce than what we’re actually going to race, if I’m not mistaken, so that’s going to be a new challenge even for everyone, just really seeing where everybody stacks up. Q. Pato, you said the degradation was less than you expected with the repave? PATO O’WARD: Yeah, no, the degradation was fantastic. The tire behaved really, really well, both prime and alternate. The track was very enjoyable to drive. Even from the first practice, it’s changed the balance a bit with the new hybrid, but once you get it into tune, those annoying bumps that we had just magically disappeared, obviously, with the new repave. It’s just a very beautiful track. It’s a very flowy and enjoyable place to come to. I was determined to have a good race here because I’ve had very strong qualifyings here. I’ve been very quick. But been out of the running for one thing or another. Yeah, this year I was determined to just get back to my normal form because it really hasn’t been there. Q. You touched on this, but can you speak a little bit more about is it more gratifying or more special to win in such a hard-fought manner against someone like Alex Palou, a two-time champion? PATO O’WARD: Yeah, no, that’s how you want to win. That’s how I want to win. In my career, I’ve had — I believe it’s six wins with this one. There’s been one of them that’s been ultimately handed to us, I would say, and that was Iowa when Josef had a failure because he’s truly been the king there. But all the other ones have been so — I’ve had to fight so freaking hard to win, and it feels so sweet because it wouldn’t have been the same, like Palou got an MGU fault or whatever and we just took the win. That is not the same. I was excited to have this challenge and like truly prove it to all of us and just do it. Q. The fan backing you’ve got is pretty astounding; what does that mean to you? PATO O’WARD: I always say Pato fans are the best. It’s very cool to see, and a very grateful, fulfilling feeling going to the different markets, and a lot of papaya walking around, a lot of No. 5 jerseys and people excited. That’s why we do this. At the end of the day, we’re in entertainment. My goals and ambitions are obviously always to strive forward in my career and just try and make — bring something to motorsports that maybe wasn’t there, I would say. I’ve tried to kind of dip my toes in different areas to enhance a fan’s experience at a weekend — I can’t do it everywhere because ultimately — it would be great to make it a business, but it’s not as easy as that, and ultimately I sometimes just end up spending my own money, and they’re chunks. There’s thousands and thousands of my own money that — I want people to see what INDYCAR is and what it can bring to them, just like some people follow soccer, some people follow basketball. Why not follow racing? But it’s definitely been frustrating lately because I haven’t given them that reason to, like, just go crazy. I think the 500 was obviously the closest that we’ve been, but it feels really special to see such a group of people that’s behind me, and whether it’s good or bad, good or bad weekends, a good chunk of them are always behind us, and that’s very special. Q. Two years ago when Gavin joined the team, and I don’t know if St. Pete would be considered a proper first win for him, but I was hoping to get your thoughts on what’s delivered him a proper first win now on the two-year anniversary of actually joining the team? PATO O’WARD: Yeah, this was the two-year. It was. Man, what can I tell you? Gavin has got a lot of passion. He’s got a lot of passion for what he does and for racing and just for building a very strong race team. I feel like athletes and maybe teams in general like around the world, whether it’s basketball, soccer or football, racing, whatever, you kind of build this skill to turn cold when things don’t really go your way. You always just move forward, move forward, move forward, move forward, turn the page, turn the page, turn the page. At some point it will weigh down on you because there is so much sacrifice and energy and money and a lot of stuff that goes into this. It made me so happy seeing their faces at the podium now. I could really tell that they know I drove my ass off because they can tell in the telemetry, and honestly, that’s what they should expect because that’s what I expect from myself, and ultimately there’s nothing like having a team of people behind you that truly trusts you 100 percent, and they know when you do have that chance, you will make it happen for them, and that’s always been what I strive for and what I want to give to them, but sometimes it just — we need to look at our realities, and sometimes kind of bring that bar down a little bit to get to that objective and then bring it back up. Q. But for Gavin specifically — PATO O’WARD: The guy has got to be ecstatic, I would say. I obviously haven’t had a chance to talk to him too much. But this probably feels as strong as it feels for me because really, our last — my last win, not counting St. Pete, really was Iowa. Gavin was present, but it was shortly after he joined the team. This is truly the first one that we’ve all been able to — well, to really live. I think Gavin has got a whole group of people behind him that also trust him, where he’s taking this team. He’s definitely brought a different view to how to approach certain things, but it’s not going to change in one day to another. It takes time. It takes money, just like everything. We can’t go play race cars without a chunk of money. But yeah, we’re here to win. THE MODERATOR: Wrapping up the 2024 version of the Honda Indy 200 at Mid-Ohio presented by the 2025 Civic Hybrid, joined by Scott McLaughlin, who led three laps today, driving the No. 3 SONSIO Team Penske Chevrolet, third podium of 2024, 15th career podium, and certainly a nice bounceback from the WeatherTech race at Laguna Seca a couple weeks ago.  THE MODERATOR: .4993 was the difference, the closest finish in five years. Scott, nice bounceback for you from Laguna Seca a couple weeks ago. You were staying up front all day long. SCOTT McLAUGHLIN: Yeah, it’s been up and down for us, as everyone knows, the last few events. Nice to get another solid result and hopefully we can go into Iowa where we know we’ll probably be pretty quick. Just a matter of putting it together over this next little bit to the end of the championship. Yeah, look, I’ve really enjoyed the hybrid integration. I’ve really enjoyed working with that and learning it and I was learning even out there throughout the weekend and through the race. But we made a lot of ground in that first stint, overcut these guys. I’m sick of getting overcut myself, so I was like, stuff it, I’m going to be overcutting today. I think we were the last one to pit, and that’s probably where we led our laps.   Q. At the end of the race are you thinking more Push-to-Pass than the hybrid assist as you’re trying to track down and race somebody for position?  SCOTT McLAUGHLIN: I was in no man’s land, so I turned everything off and just drove it home. Q. Six of the last eight races will be on ovals where the hybrid advantage is not as great as it is on a street or road course. Do you just go back to the mindset of regular oval racing? SCOTT McLAUGHLIN: I think it’s going to differ to some ovals. I think there’s going to be parts where you can use it, and in Milwaukee and Gateway where there’s probably more decel, you’ll use it differently than Iowa where it’s really quick now and you really have to be off the gas. But yeah, ultimately when we were testing there, we were really focused on car balance and then sort of got into the hybrid in the afternoon. It’s boost. It’s going to help us at some point. You’ve just got to use it at the right moments.  Q. your general thoughts of the hybrid in the series? Essentially 27 cars started, 27 cars finished. Overall direction the series is going on with this hybrid and your thoughts of it in general?   SCOTT McLAUGHLIN: Yeah, I concur. It’s a lot more fun because it’s in our hands, and that’s what I think is really cool about it. There’s no order to deploy, nothing like that. Literally we push a button for it to work, and you’ve got to think about it so much, and it changes whether you’re battling with someone or you’re by yourself just trying to get lap time. That’s what’s really cool. Then you’ve got Push-to-Pass on top of that. It’s busy, but I think that’s where you’re going to see the difference, and there’s going to be some mistakes creep in, especially on street circuits I’m sure. There’s a lot going on. But it’s fun.   Q. Scott, you hung out in no-man’s land, 10, 12 seconds off the lead for a long time. Was there just nothing else you could do? SCOTT McLAUGHLIN: I just lost so much time in that first stint, but ultimately I was just trying to maximize my day in that first stint by saving as much fuel as I could, and I just jumped the guys in the overcut, but then these guys were all the way down the road. It was actually honestly a bit of a testing issue for me. I was trying different things with the hybrid, Push-to-Pass, all that stuff. It was actually really cool. Learned a lot of things, and hopefully we can — we got points, and hopefully we can use it later down the track, whether it’s next year or end of the year. Q. How much did you use manual regen in the race and how much did you use automatic and how did that play out in the race, if you can talk through a little bit of the reasons for doing either in the race? SCOTT McLAUGHLIN: I’m not going to tell him. SCOTT McLAUGHLIN: Exactly, so no. I used it in different places.  Q. Can you touch on this busy stretch of races? We had a week off but now it gets really busy here the next couple weeks before the Olympic break.  SCOTT McLAUGHLIN: Yeah, this is awesome. I really enjoy this schedule. I think it is a squashed-up schedule, but this part of the season in the summer, beautiful weather, it’s a lot of fun. The amount of people that we had out here this weekend, I think it was the most I’ve ever seen out here in my time in INDYCAR. People love coming out here in the summer, and I’m glad we have races in the good weather. Q. I know you guys don’t really look at your competitors. One way or another you want to go out there and beat them. But does this kid O’Ward have the potential now that he’s gotten over the hurdle and gotten back in Victory Lane that he could win a lot?  SCOTT McLAUGHLIN: He’s like Taylor Swift out there. It was deafening on the podium. It was very impressive. I think every person in this category can win a race, and that’s a testament to INDYCAR. Yeah, Pato is one of those guys, and he’s always there. Alex is one of those guys, and I’m trying to be there, as well, with those guys. Yeah, it’s just the most competitive series in the world.

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