While Simon Pagenaud and the No. 22 Menards Dallara/Chevrolet's fifth-place finish at World Wide Technology Raceway in Madison, Ill. didn't garner a win, it felt like one as the team moved into second in 2019 IndyCar Series championship point standings with just two races remaining. Starting the race in the third position, Pagenaud ran hard towards the front of the field from the beginning of the 248-lap event. By lap 100, Pagenaud was running as fast as the leader and continued to gain speed. Running in the eighth position on lap 176, he returned to the pits once again for fuel and tires as part of the pit cycle. Unfortunately, a few laps later on lap 184, Pagenaud was blocked and lost some track position.
For their final pit stop, Pagenaud brought the No. 22 Menards Chevrolet to the pits for tires and fuel on lap 192. Pagenaud continued to charge hard and ultimately settled for a fifth-place finish in the Saturday evening night race. Next weekend the series heads to Portland where Pagenaud and the No. 22 Chevrolet finished sixth after starting 22nd. The team plans to improve upon that performance and continue to battle teammate Josef Newgarden for the 2019 IndyCar Series championship.
"Wow, what a night. That is a race that I am going to be excited to re-watch. Honestly, I really don't know much about what happened because as a driver you are kind of like a horse. You just have to keep going. We had a really good car and after five laps the car was really, really strong. It had a lot of pace and we could really keep it up through the stint. Really, really struggled on restarts. Just no grip. Some of it is me and some of it, I don't know what it is. Certainly, some work we need to do. Wow, it was an eventful race. Lots of passing and lots of elbows out, out there and with the strategies, it seemed like it was fun. The fans had a great show tonight."