Ed Carpenter Racing’s Josef Newgarden has had an incredible 2016 Verizon IndyCar Series. The American who drives the No.21 Chevrolet heads to the season finale in Sonoma this weekend in fifth place in the championship.

Newgarden started the 100th running of the Indianapolis 500 from the front row alongside James Hinchcliffe and Ryan Hunter Reay and finished the race on the podium in third place.

Newgarden claimed his first podium of the season when he finished the Honda Indy Grand Prix of Alabama in third place. As is well documented by now in early June when the series headed to Texas Motor Speedway for the Firestone 600, Newgarden was involved in a heavy crash with Dale Coyne Racing’s Conor Daly resulting in him (Newgarden) fracturing his wrist and clavicle.

Newgarden didn’t miss a single race despite his injuries and even dominated the Iowa Corn 300 at Iowa Speedway to claim his first win of the season.

Last time out in Watkins Glen, Newgarden finished the race in second place behind Scott Dixon and heads into the double points points race in Sonoma on 446 points just five behind Dixon who is in third place in the standings. Speaking ahead of the race Newgarden commented by saying:

I’m excited to get back to Sonoma Raceway, it’s great to race there for the finale. We’re had an awesome season with the No. 21 Fuzzy’s Vodka car and we’re looking to finish things off right. Sonoma’s been good to us the last couple of years with starting on the front row after the last two qualifying sessions there. We need to try and replicate that, then have a good, strong finish and see where that puts us in the championship!

Spencer Pigot who joined the Verizon IndyCar Series earlier this season with Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing before moving to Ed Carpenter Racing heads to Sonoma following a 15th place finish at The Glen and speaking ahead of the race in Sonoma he commented by saying:

I haven’t raced at Sonoma Raceway since 2014 so I’m excited to be going back! It’s a very challenging track with lots of elevation changes and a good combination of slow and fast corners. We learned a lot at the test so hopefully we will come back strong for the race. I’ve really enjoyed my rookie season in IndyCar and I’ll be giving it my best to end the year on a high note!

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