INDIANAPOLIS – Pole sitter Rinus VeeKay led all 35 laps and grabbed a flawless victory Saturday in the second race of the Indy Lights presented by Cooper Tires weekend on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course. In the process the Juncos Racing driver swept into the championship lead a third of the way through the 2019 season.
The 18-year-old Dutchman was only challenged briefly at the start, but soon set sail in the No. 21 Dallara IL-15 to a comfortable 6.8849-second margin of victory over Zachary Claman (No. 13 Belardi Auto Racing).
The win was VeeKay’s second of the season and pushed him one point ahead of Andretti Autosport’s Oliver Askew after six races. Robert Megennis, who won Friday’s race at IMS, is 21 points behind VeeKay and Claman is 22 back.
“It feels amazing to have my first win in Indianapolis,” VeeKay said. “I hope it's the first of many. There's still one race left in the month of May (the Freedom 100 on the oval on May 24), so it's really nice to go in there with the points lead and hopefully take that win also.”
Lindh sweeps weekend in Indy Pro 2000
Rasmus Lindh completed a rare perfect weekend sweep on the 2.439-mile, 14-turn IMS road course in Indy Pro 2000 presented by Cooper Tires.
The 17-year-old Swede duplicated Friday’s outing, leading flag to flag from the pole in the No. 10 Juncos Racing Tatuus PM-18 to earn his second career victory, beating teammate Sting Ray Robb by 2.0669 seconds on Saturday.
“The confidence is higher now than St. Petersburg, where (Parker) Thompson was faster than everyone,” Lindh said. “Now, we dominated here and, for sure, I'm confident to do the oval as well and now we are leading championship as well. So that's even better.”
The sweep pushed Lindh 11 points ahead of Thompson (Abel Motorsports) after four of 16 Indy Pro 2000 races. The series returns to action May 23-24 for the Freedom 90 on the 0.686-mile Lucas Oil Raceway oval in Indianapolis.
Eves stays perfect with fourth USF2000 victory of 2019
Pole sitter Braden Eves collected the IMS road course doubleheader weekend sweep in the Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship. The Cape Motorsports driver has won all four USF2000 races thus far in 2019.
Three full-course cautions tried to impede the 20-year-old Ohioan’s race throughout the 20 laps Saturday, but he made his No. 8 Tatuus USF-17 wide on each restart, including the final one with three laps to go. Eves crossed the finish line 0.5455 of a second ahead of teammate Darren Keane, with Hunter McElrea (No. 22 Pabst Racing) claiming the last podium spot in third.
“I feel that I'm a very good, consistent championship driver,” Eves said. “I feel like even (in karting) my worst results were pretty decent and that's how I kind of expected this season to go. That’s to be always up front. Podiums mostly was the goal, but to come in and have four wins straight out the gate, it's hard to wrap my head around.”
Jak Crawford (No. 52 DEForce Racing), who turned 14 years old on May 2, celebrated by finishing fourth in his second USF2000 start. Eduardo Barrichello (No. 41 Miller Vinatieri Motorsports), son of former Formula One and NTT IndyCar Series driver Rubens Barrichello, charged from 10th starting position to finish fifth and collect his best finish to date.
Eves holds a 22-point advantage over McElrea, with the Freedom 75 at Lucas Oil Raceway scheduled for May 24.