7.9.14 – Andretti Autosport has been known to dominate on a particular Midwest oval on the Verizon IndyCar Series circuit. You’re thinking Indianapolis Motor Speedway, right? The reigning Indy 500 champions have had wonderful memories on the 2.5-mile oval, but no one dominates IMS. No, we’re talking about the 0.875-mile oval in the little town of Newton, Iowa – Iowa Speedway.
The four-time IndyCar Series champs are FIVE-time Iowa Speedway winners. That’s just out of the last seven years the Verizon IndyCar Series has competed there, Andretti Autosport (formerly Andretti Green Racing) has dominated.
During his final year with Andretti in which he won the Indianapolis 500 and the IndyCar Series championship, Dario Franchitti captured the inaugural Iowa race win in 2007. The following two years saw a not-to-be-named red and white rival to have captured the beloved Iowa Corn trophy. However, since 2010, Andretti Autosport has won every IndyCar Series event at the Newton, IA facility.
In 2010, Tony Kanaan’s final year with the team, the Brazilian made Iowa his only win of the season leading 51 of the 250 laps. Third-generation racer Marco Andretti brought home his second career win at the superspeedway in 2011. 2014 Indianapolis 500 Champion Ryan Hunter-Reay’s victory there in 2012 was part of three consecutive wins during his championship-winning year. To top off the five years of victory, Canadian James Hinchcliffe captured his third career win, and only oval win, last year in 2013.
This year will see a change to the Iowa Corn sponsored race; the usual 250-lap event is being bumped up to 300 for 2014 – a total of 262.5 miles as opposed to the previous 218.75 miles. With three previous winners on the squad and three-time podium visitor (this season!) and rookie Carlos Munoz, the event is Andretti Autosport’s for the taking. With the Colombian, there could be a seventh new winner at the speedway. For Hunter-Reay, Andretti or Hinchcliffe, each is eligible to tie for the driver with the most wins (two, Dario Franchitti).
Who will be victorious on July 12, 2014 under the lights? Time will tell. Just be sure to keep your eye on the four-car squad of Andretti Autosport who will be looking to make 2014 their sixth win and fifth consecutive victory at the Newton, IA speedway.