By Dylan Reynolds, OpenWheel.com
The 2023 INDYCAR season continues weekend with the NTT INDYCAR SERIES 2023 Hy-Vee INDYCAR Race Weekend at Iowa Speedway in Newton, Iowa. OpenWheel.com will be covering the action all weekend so stay tuned to this site and our Twitter page @openwh33l for all of the latest news.
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INDY NXT by Firestone Preview: INDY NXT by Firestone at Iowa Speedway (Entry List) – Saturday, July 22, 2023 11:00AM (ET) Peacock – The first oval weekend of the year for INDY NXT by Firestone figures to be a big one as the series championship has heated up. The Top 5 in the standings are separated by less than 50 points now. That Top 5 is Nolan Siegel, Christian Rasmussen, Hunter McElrea, Louis Foster, and Jacob Abel. McElrea won this race last year so watch out for him again this weekend. Matthew Brabham will drive the No. 75 entry this weekend for Juncos Hollinger Racing after the team announced they parted ways with Matteo Nannini this week.
NTT INDYCAR SERIES Preview: Hy-Vee INDYCAR Race Weekend – Hy-Vee Homefront 250: Saturday, July 22nd, 2023 3:00PM (ET) NBC & Hy-Vee One Step 250: Sunday, July 23rd, 2023 2:00PM (ET) NBC – It’s a doubleheader weekend for the NTT INDYCAR SERIES this weekend at a track where Josef Newgarden has been absolutely dominant at over the course of his career His success at Iowa may be the only hope for a title race at this point as Alex Palou’s championship lead is now 117 points over second place Scott Dixon and 126 points over third place Newgarden. Conor Daly will be substituting for the still-not-cleared Simon Pagenaud in the Meyer Shank Racing No. 60 this weekend. Previous driver performance at the circuit shows four former winners entered in Josef Newgarden (4), Ryan Hunter-Reay (3), Helio Castroneves (1), and Pato O’Ward (1). Newgarden and O’Ward are the two most recent winners at the circuit, though Newgarden would have won both races last year if not for a mechanical issue. Looking at the box scores from the 2022 Race 1 and 2022 Race 2 races at Iowa, O’Ward, Will Power, and Dixon finished in the Top 5 in both races. If that’s expanded to the Top 10, those three are joined by Marcus Ericsson and Romain Grosjean. The Top 5 in laps led at Iowa entered this weekend are Newgarden (1,506), Castroneves (644), Power (234), Dixon (130), and O’Ward (97).
My pick to win: Josef Newgarden (x2) – This is Josef Newgarden’s house until proven otherwise. Outside of the previously mentioned mechanical issue in the second race at Iowa last year, he’s won every NTT INDYCAR SERIES race on an oval for a calendar year. Look at those laps led. It’d be foolish to pick anyone but him this weekend regardless of what happens.
My fantasy.indycar.com picks: Pato O’Ward $30, Alexander Rossi $28, Conor Daly $24, & Benjamin Pedersen $18 – At an insane $42 this weekend, it’s nearly impossible to pick Newgarden. Just get his bonus points when picking the Top 3 and take him as the winner. O’Ward should be on the podium and that’s still good value at $30. Rossi steps into a great car in his Arrow McLaren machine and I like his potential this weekend. In a weekend tough to predict at the lower dollar amounts, I like what Daly might be able to do this weekend for his price. Pedersen will be my pick for best of the $18 options heading into the weekend as Foyt had a good oval showing at Indy even if that’s entirely different and Pedersen had a solid performance last year at Gateway what was then Indy Lights.