A look ahead to Saturday night’s DXC Technology 600 Verizon IndyCar Series race at Texas Motor Speedway. The DXC Technology 600 will be broadcast live on the NBC Sports Network beginning at 7:30 p.m. CT and also on SiriusXM Radio (Channel 209), INDYCAR Radio Network and locally on 95.9 FM The Ranch.
NORTH TEXAS HAS BECOME SECOND HOME TO NATIVE AUSSIE POWER
FORT WORTH, Texas (June 6, 2018) — The Verizon IndyCar Series has one of the most diverse driver lineups in all of auto racing. Maybe all of sports.
At 8,372 miles, no IndyCar pilot will be further away from his hometown this weekend than Will Power. That said, when the reigning race champion steps on the throttle for Saturday night’s DXC Technology 600, he’s still going to feel right at home.
“It was an exciting win for me last year simply because I was trying to win it for so long. My wife (Elizabeth) and her family are from here (Plano, Texas),” said Power, a native of Toowoomba, Australia. “I remember her cousin said ‘Just win this race, would ya?’ And he was actually there when I finally did. It’s kind of a second home for me. (It’s an) epic place.”
Power is coming off a very memorable month of May. After winning the Indianapolis Grand Prix on May 12, Power followed that up by becoming the first driver in history to sweep Indy via his victory in the 102nd annual Indianapolis 500. It was the 2014 IndyCar Series champion’s first Indy 500 win in 11 tries.
“That was the one, you know? The one I wanted to win so badly. I started to wonder if it was ever going to happen,” Power said. “I had so many years of thinking about ‘I have to win the 500’ and there was kind of a bit of frustration building there. I still have that thought because it was so strong in my mind that I’m like ‘Hang on. No, I won the 500.’ That’s going to be there forever.”
Now Power shifts his focus to Texas Motor Speedway, where he looks to become just the third driver in history to win back-to-back races at the speedy 1.5-mile oval. Power survived a caution-filled, dramatic and intense 2017 race that saw eight cars battling it out for the win over the final 19 laps.
It will be Power’s second visit to the Lone Star State in the last two weeks. On May 30, Power made pit stops across the Dallas-Fort Worth area, including The Star in Frisco, home of the Dallas Cowboys practice facility. With his wife and his brother-in-law, Billy Cannon, in tow, Power met with many of the Cowboys taking part in offseason OTA’s.
“I’ve been to like four Super Bowls and didn’t really know the players or the teams,” said Power, who was a special guest of his sponsor Verizon at those games. “My brother-in-law is just an absolute football nut. Dallas Cow
boys fan. So is my wife. So it’s pretty cool to bring them along to do this.”
Power has certainly made Texas a second home over the last decade. In 10 starts, Power has three poles, two wins and has only finished outside the top 10 three times, his worst finish being a 14th back in 2010.
“I love it here,” Power said. “It’s a great track with a lot of speed and a lot of close, tight racing. I always look forward to coming back here.”
DXC Technology signed an agreement with Texas Motor Speedway in February to become the entitlement sponsor of the Verizon IndyCar Series race held annually in June at the world-renowned motorsports facility. “America’s Original Nighttime IndyCar Race,” a staple event since the venue opened in 1997, is set for Saturday night and has been re-branded the DXC Technology 600.
So what is DXC Technology?
DXC Technology (DXC: NYSE) is the world’s leading independent, end-to-end IT services company, serving nearly 6,000 private and public-sector clients from a diverse array of industries across 70 countries.
The company was formed on April 1, 2017 by the merger of CSC and the Enterprise Services business of Hewlett Packard Enterprise. With some 150,000 employees worldwide, DXC Technology, a Fortune 500 company and represented in the S&P 500 Index, has established more than 250 industry-leading global Partner Network relationships, including 15 strategic partners: Amazon Web Services, AT&T, Dell EMC, HCL, Hitachi, HPE, HP, IBM, Lenovo, Micro Focus, Microsoft, Oracle, PwC, SAP and ServiceNow.
DXC Technology, with headquarters in Tysons, Va., has a significant local presence in Dallas/Fort Worth with a branch office in Plano that has more than 2,500 employees.
DXC Technology already had a notable presence in the Verizon IndyCar Series with Team Penske. In its first season as a motorsports sponsor in 2017, DXC Technology became a partner with Team Penske and driver Simon Pagenaud. DXC Technology extended its partnership for 2018 with the company serving as the primary sponsor on Pagenaud’s car for six races, including the DXC Technology 600, and as an associate sponsor on the remaining races for the No. 22 team. The company also provides Team Penske with technology support.
Pagenaud will be visiting with hundreds of employees at the Plano office (7000 Parkwood) on Wednesday as well as participating in a special drone exhibition during a special event to celebrate the company’s partnership with Texas Motor Speedway. He will be available to the media at the event from 2:20-2:40 p.m. CT.
DID YOU KNOW?
Only one Verizon IndyCar Series driver has repeated as the champion of Saturday’s DXC Technology 600 in the 22-year history of Texas Motor Speedway.
Scott Sharp of Kelley Racing.
Sharp won the 2000 Casino Magic 500k over Robby McGehee by 0.059 of a second and had some good fortune to repeat in 2001.
A three-car accident involving race leader Greg Ray allowed Sharp to inherit the lead on Lap 196 and he held it under caution through the final five laps for the win.
It was the sixth of his nine career victories over the course of his 16-year Indy-car career that began in 1993.
- TAKING IT TO THE BANK
Four-time Verizon IndyCar Series champion Scott Dixon will look to take sole possession of third place for most career wins in Indy-car history when the Chip Ganassi Racing driver competes in Saturday night’s DXC Technology 600 at Texas Motor Speedway.
On Saturday, Dixon won the first race of the doubleheader weekend at The Raceway at Belle Isle in Detroit for his 42nd career victory. The win moved him into a tie for third all-time with Michael Andretti and extended his streak to 14 consecutive seasons of at least one victory.
Two motorsports legends own the top two positions with A.J. Foyt first with 67 wins and Mario Andretti second at 52.
“I think we’re also very lucky, too, to still have A.J. and Mario and Michael still involved to a very high level in the sport, and the legends and what they’ve done for all of us is really gratifying to see,” Dixon said after the win. “For me, I love racing. I feel very lucky to do it, and while I’m here, I want to do the best that I can. You know, winning is why we’re in this business…”
Added Michael Andretti, who competed against Dixon until his retirement in 2007: “Scott Dixon is one of the best Indy car drivers of all-time, so it was only just a matter of time before he was going to get there (third on the all-time win list). Well deserved. He’s a great ambassador for the sport.”
Saturday’s win, coupled with a fourth-place finish on Sunday at Belle Isle, vaulted Dixon into second place in the Verizon IndyCar Series championship, just five points behind Team Penske’s Will Power.
Power is the defending champion of the DXC Technology 600, but Dixon has fared quite well at Texas Motor Speedway over the years. He is a two-time winner, with victories in 2008 and again in ’15. He also ranks third all-time at Texas for top-five finishes (9) as well as top-10 finishes (12) in 18 career starts.
FOUR QUESTIONS WITH JOSEF NEWGARDEN (VIDEO)
Team Penske driver Josef Newgarden, the defending Verizon IndyCar Series champion, talks about winning the title, the DXC Technology 600 and Texas food (2 minutes, 22 seconds).
KEEPING UP WITH THE JONESES
Ed Jones meet Ed Jones. Same name, but vastly different backgrounds.
Verizon IndyCar Series driver Ed “Too Fast” Jones will meet his namesake Dallas Cowboys great Ed “Too Tall” Jones during this weekend’s DXC Technology 600 at Texas Motor Speedway.
“Too Tall” will be a guest of “Too Fast” and Chip Ganassi Racing for Saturday’s Verizon IndyCar Series race, including taking part in the pre-race activities and watching the start of the race from the No. 10 NTT Data pit box.
The Joneses also will conduct a brief press conference at 6:15 p.m. Saturday in the deadline room of the infield media center prior to pre-race activities for the DXC Technology 600.
“Too Fast” is a 24-year-old native of Dubai, United Arab Emirates and stands 5-foot-7. He is in his second season with the Verizon IndyCar Series and first with Chip Ganassi Racing. He competed in 2017 with Dale Coyne Racing.
“Too Tall,” a 67-year-old Tennessee native, was a 6-foot-9 defensive end that played 15 seasons with the Dallas Cowboys (1974-78, ’80-89). In 1979, he briefly left football to attempt a career in professional boxing.
He was a three-time All-Pro defensive end and a member of the Super Bowl XII champions.
BY THE NUMBERS
222.556 – Two-lap average in miles per hour of Charlie Kimball‘s qualifying effort last year that earned him the pole and set the speedway qualifying record for a two-lap run.
23 – Lead changes among seven drivers in last year’s DXC Technology 600.
5.16 – Average finishing position of A.J. Foyt Racing driver Tony Kanaan, which ranks first all-time at TMS among drivers with a minimum of eight starts.
3 – Consecutive poles won by Team Penke driver Will Power at Texas Motor Speedway (2013-15).
Check out the second episode of the TMS Bobblehead Family parody video featuring the life-sized bobbleheads of James Hinchcliffe, Graham Rahal and Danica Patrick. Hinch provides his own voice for the episode.
It was quite a weekend in the Motor City for Andretti Autosport driver Ryan Hunter-Reay as he ended a nearly three-year winless drought and made a big jump in the Verizon IndyCar Series championship standings.
Hunter-Reay, the 2012 series champion, won Sunday’s race at The Raceway at Belle Isle in Detroit to snap a 42-race winless streak that dated to Pocono in August of 2015. The victory, the 17th of his career, was his first on a temporary street course since winning at Baltimore in 2012.
The winless streak did make him think at times if he would finally be able to convert a number of near misses he had at victory since 2015.
“It went through my head a lot,” Hunter-Reay admitted. “But I know I have the team behind me to do it. I know I can do it with the right car. I know I have the talent to win the races and just have to think positive.
“I’ve got the best job on earth, so I come and show up in the morning and there’s a yellow car there with my name on the side of it, and I go to work as an INDYCAR car driver. I absolutely knew we could get back in victory lane, it’s just a matter of putting it all together.”
It was a stellar weekend for Hunter-Reay in the Detroit doubleheader as he finished runner-up Saturday to Scott Dixon.The strong finishes moved him from fifth to fourth in the championship standings, but, more importantly, trimmed the deficit on the championship leader.
Hunter-Reay came into the weekend trailing by 57 points and now finds himself just 31 behind Team Penske’s Will Power heading into Saturday night’s DXC Technology at Texas Motor Speedway. He has struggled of late at Texas, with no finish better than 13th in his last four visits.
Saturday night’s DXC Technology will mark the 30th Verizon IndyCar Series race at Texas Motor Speedway.
The series has been a staple at Texas Motor Speedway since it opened in 1997 and the venue has hosted more Verizon IndyCar Series races than any other track in league history, including Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
In addition to the annual June race, which also included a doubleheader event in 2011, Texas Motor Speedway also hosted a fall Verizon IndyCar Series race from 1998 through 2004.
HINCHTOWN ON THE RISE
The population of Hinchtown is about to explode prior to Saturday night’s DXC Technology 600 at Texas Motor Speedway.
There will be 20,000 Mayor of Hinchtown bobbleheads invading Texas Motor Speedway as fans attending the Verizon IndyCar Series race will receive one of the Schmidt Peterson Motorsports driver James Hinchcliffe.
MEDIA NOTE/PHOTO OPP: Hinchcliffe will be handing out his bobblehead to unsuspecting fans from 3:30-3:45 p.m. at the Gate 4 entrance.
Hinch is the second of the three-driver bobblehead series for the 2018 Texas Motor Speedway season.
Seven-time Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series champion Jimmie Johnson was featured in April’s NASCAR race weekend and 2004 Cup champ Kurt Busch will be the bobblehead for November’s AAA Texas 500 NASCAR Playoff tripleheader.
KID (RACING) GLOVES
Reigning Verizon IndyCar Series champion Josef Newgarden will serve as the Honorary Grand Marshal for the USAC .25 quarter-midget event scheduled for Thursday through Saturday at Texas Motor Speedway.
The event already has attracted more than 279 participants between the ages of five and 16 for the inaugural USAC.25 series race that is being held in conjunction with the Verizon IndyCar Series, NASCAR’s Camping World Truck Series and Stadium SUPER Trucks.
The track will be set up in the parking lot outside of Gate 7 and racing will be daily from 8 a.m.-8 p.m. No ticket to the speedway events is needed for admission to the USAC.25 racing action, which is free.
Newgarden is scheduled to visit with the racers from 10-10:30 a.m. Friday.
“I’m really looking forward to hanging out with the USAC.25 Series racers,” said Newgarden, the Team Penske driver who began his motorsports career at age 13 and won numerous karting titles as a youth. “Racing at Texas Motor Speedway will be an amazing experience for these kids, and I’m excited to be able to share some of that thrill with these young drivers with big dreams. It wasn’t that long ago that I had the same aspirations, so it’s very cool to be able to give back and spend some time with these racers. I’m sure it will be a blast and I can’t wait to be the Grand Marshal for their event.”
This is the third of eight races that make up the 2018 USAC.25 series national schedule. The season kicked off at Daytona International Speedway in Feb., where more than 340 kids from across the country came to compete.
Some notable graduates of quarter midget racing include Jeff Gordon and Joey Logano of NASCAR, and Ed Carpenter and Sarah Fisher of INDYCAR.
BACK IN THE SADDLE
For Ed Carpenter, the runner-up finish in the May 27 Indianapolis 500 was bittersweet.
Sure, the driver/owner was happy about leading a race-high 65 laps from the pole position in the 102nd running of “The Greatest Spectacle in Racing,” but it also left the oval specialist wondering what might have been.
“It was disappointing, especially when I know we had a car to win the race,” said Carpenter, who will be in the field for Saturday night’s DXC Technology 600. “All you can do is take what you learned and apply it for next time. We’ll come back and try it again next year.”
Carpenter spent last weekend in Detroit on the sidelines. The owner of the self-named Ed Carpenter Racing, he watched his team struggle a bit on the road course in Motown. But Texas Motor Speedway provides an opportunity for the 37-year-old to get back behind the wheel at a track where he’s felt the thrill of victory.
“Texas never disappoints with the IndyCar race,” said Carpenter, winner of the 2014 IndyCar race at TMS. “It’s always a great show.”
Last year’s race certainly was a memorable one with a record nine cautions and intense side-by-side racing. The big wreck took out nine cars, including Carpenter. Tony Kanaan was blamed for the wreck and was handed a penalty, yet still went on to finish second in a race that saw only six of the starting 22 cars finish on the lead lap.
“I think we need exciting racing like that race was (last year), where it gets a little out of control sometimes. It doesn’t make me afraid to race with Tony , he’s a pro,” Carpenter said. “We’re all out there fighting as hard as we can for wins and to be successful for our teams and sponsors. We can race close and hard like that, but at the end of the day we’ve got to respect each other out on track a little more than we did last year.”