Josef Newgarden will stay at the CFH Racing team for the 2016 IndyCar season, putting an end to speculation about the American ace's future.
Tennessee native Newgarden, who clinched his first two IndyCar victories this season, will remain for a second year at CFH Racing after an official annoucement from the team.
Following rumors that linked him to Chip Ganassi Racing-Chevrolet and despite Honda’s desire to place him at either Andretti Autosport or Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing, Newgarden is staying with the team that was formed when Ed Carpenter Racing merged with Sarah Fisher Hartman Racing last winter. SFHR had been Newgarden’s home since his 2012 debut season.
“My future is where you expected it to be,” Newgarden told Motorsport.com, “and I’m happy about that. Obviously teams like Ganassi and Penske are appealing given their heritage, but there’s also a lot of satisfaction from helping to take a younger team into the Winner’s Circle. It’s so fulfilling finding success in that way.
Newgarden, who took victory at Barber Motorsports Park and led home a CFH 1-2 finish on the streets of Toronto, said: “We’ve had a lot of good experiences together and Ed [Carpenter], Sarah [Fisher] and Wink [Hartman] have assembled a lot of good pieces in terms of personnel. It’s come together very well, we’ve made so much progress and I like being one of those elements of success.”
Team pace encouraging
Despite five finishes of 20th or worse in 2015, Newgarden declared that CFH Racing’s speed on a variety of tracks had been the most encouraging aspect of the season.
“Yes, we got unlucky a few times, and there were one or two mistakes – and I include myself there – it’s been all about learning together,” said the American who took pole position at Milwaukee, and was in strong victory contention at both Iowa and Sonoma. “The signs that we’re stronger, in my opinion, is that 1) We’re fast on all types of track, and 2) when we’re fast, we know why, and when we’re slow, we know why and we’re able to fix it.”
Newgarden ultimately finished seventh in the 2015 championship but entered the finale with a small chance of taking the title. He qualified second, but was held up in the Sonoma pits and was finally eliminated when his car caught fire.