IndyCar: Ed Jones bounces back and races to the podium in Detroit

IndyCar: Ed Jones bounces back and races to the podium in Detroit

Ed Jones had promised to come back ‘stronger’ after a hefty impact with the wall prematurely curtailed his Indianapolis 500 bid seven days earlier, and the talented Dubai, UAE-born ace duly delivered in Detroit last weekend (2/3 June), as he sped to his second podium of the season and the third top three finish of his fledgling and increasingly impressive Verizon IndyCar Series career.

As the bumpiest and most physically gruelling circuit on the IndyCar calendar, the Raceway at Belle Isle Park was arguably the toughest place to return from an accident that had briefly left Jones hospitalised. What’s more, the Dual in Detroit is the only double-header on the 2018 schedule, with a race each day, and the new-spec car introduced this year requires even more manhandling to coax a competitive lap time out of it around the punishing 2.35-mile, 14-turn lap – without the luxury of power steering.

Saying that, the 2017 IndyCar ‘Rookie of the Year’ had claimed a top ten finish at the temporary Michigan street course last season, and after working his way methodically through Saturday’stwo free practice sessions behind the wheel of his 720bhp Dallara-Honda single-seater, he put Chip Ganassi Racing’s No.10 NTT Data entry 11th on the grid for the first race amongst the 23 high-calibre contenders – ahead of ultra-experienced big-hitters Simon Pagenaud, Josef Newgarden and Sébastien Bourdais, title-winners all three.

Immediately going on the attack when the green flag dropped, Jones soon advanced into the top ten and latched onto the back of a multi-car scrap over fifth as he lapped faster than the leader in the early stages. Making his softer-compound, less durable red sidewall tyres last all the way to lap 25, he had risen as high as third by the time he peeled into the pits to switch to the ‘primary’ black-sidewall rubber, betraying no ill-effects from his Indianapolis misfortune.

ED JONES (10) of the United Arab Emirates accepts his 3rd place trophy at the Detroit Grand Prix at Belle Isle Street Course in Detroit, Michigan.

After rejoining in ninth, during his second stint, the series sophomore chased down the battle over fourth before pitting again with 24 laps remaining. A brace of late safety car interventions subsequently concertinaed the pack together, and Jones grittily defended his position from former champion and recent Indy 500 winner Will Power and reigning title-holder Josef Newgarden to secure a strong sixth place at the chequered flag.

“This track is always difficult,” he reflected, “but it was a great day for the NTT Data car. The guys gave me a really good car in qualifying and although I didn’t get the most out of it there, we were able to make it through the ranks in the race. Big congratulations to my team-mate Scott Dixon for his 42nd IndyCar win. It was a fantastic job by the whole Ganassi team.”

The next day dawned wet, but the 2016 Indy Lights Champion demonstrated his versatility and all-weather prowess by scything through the spray in qualifying to seal a career-high fourth on the grid. The track dried out in time for the race, and Jones made an excellent start to pinch third from Power, only for a shuffle later around the opening lap to relegate him to sixth.

Recovering to fourth as the first pit-stop phase began, he caught and passed Dixon – the most successful driver in the current field – on lap 13 before pulling away and zeroing in on Power in second as he again set the pace amongst the front-runners. Following his own pit visit, the 23-year-old Brit was back up to third by mid-distance as the various strategies played out, conceding just a single position to eventual winner and 2012 series champion Ryan Hunter-Reay after the final round of stops.

He regained the place, however, when leader Alexander Rossi ran off-track with six laps to go, thereafter maintaining the pressure on Power – closing to barely a second adrift of his quarry – while simultaneously fending off the ever-present Dixon behind.

ED JONES (10) of the United Arab Emirates accepts his 3rd place trophy at the Detroit Grand Prix at Belle Isle Street Course in Detroit, Michigan.

Defeating his four-time title-winning team-mate in a straight fight, third position equalled Jones’ career-best at the fiercely-disputed pinnacle of US open-wheel competition and vaulted him from 18th up to 12th in the chase for the coveted crown ahead of a return to oval competition this weekend, under the floodlights of Texas Motor Speedway (Saturday, 9 June).

“Another brilliant day for the NTT Data team,” enthused the former European F3 Open Champion, who is being coached this year by multiple IndyCar title-holder and Indy 500 winner Dario Franchitti. “The guys really did a great job with the car over the weekend. We started off a bit slow, but the important thing is that we improved with every session and earned our way to the podium.

“We had a really good qualifying in tricky conditions on Sunday; I wasn’t sure how the car was going to feel in the wet initially, and it was pretty sketchy for the first few laps but once I got a handle on it, I had a lot of fun out there. That said, the No.10 NTT Data car was awesome in the dry and we wanted a dry race after Scott’s amazing win on Saturday.

“Things played out well for us, and while we didn’t quite have enough to get by Will [Power], the podium was another step in the right direction and I’m already looking forward to getting back after it at Texas in a few short days. Let’s see if we can’t go a couple of spots better again…”

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9 hrs ago

MotoGP

Two motorsport icons 💪
One epic ride swap! 🔁

Valentino Rossi VR46 Official and Lewis Hamilton, coming soon! 🔥

#lh44vr46
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Two motorsport icons 💪
One epic ride swap! 🔁

Valentino Rossi VR46 Official and Lewis Hamilton, coming soon! 🔥 

#LH44VR46

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boyzzz, do me the favour and switch seats (at least just for one day) - I´m sure it would be "fantastico" for all of us ! ❤️❤️😍😍

One , Lewis Hamilton is a lucky champion and not so a Nice Guy. Very bad that he is in one picture with one of the best drivers ever in moto GP

This photo is gold, I’d love it in a frame on my wall, my two favorites people in racing, Vale and Lewis 💙💚

Why is everyone hating on these two they have bigger balls than you going that kind of speed round each corner the only difference between them is the number of wheels both of them are amazing racers both can drive a car and ride a bike plus don’t forget Rossi’s only protection is leathers helmet gloves and boots plus an air bag Lewis Hamilton’s protection is helmet neck brace a fire suit and a halo stop your hating and enjoy a picture of a g.o.a.t and legend

The press release afterwards remember to say you had no rear grip with the Yamaha and I'll say the Mercedes needs to give you more power 😭😂😂😂😂

Rossi is better athlete . It's much more difficult to drive on 2 wheels . He is number 1 motosport icon at the moment

Rossi can be compared only with M. Schumacher! 2 great champions 💕

Wandering what he’s whispering ha Lewis you May be an ace driver and a mega star with all the money in the world but you still have no fucking style 😂

I'd love to see Lewis try and get within 2 seconds of Rossi on a bike, he wouldn't even get close.

Not Vale’s first run in a F1 car, drove the Ferrari about 13yrs ago under Michael Schumacher’s guidance.

Lewis Hamilton, never heard of her 🤔🤔

It is great to see MotoGP and F1 icons together 💪🏻🙏🏻

The one on the left has more than earned his fame the one on the right has his mommy and daddy pay for it 🏁🏍👍😎

I see one icon and a 'whinging when something doesnt go his way P**ck' to his left!!!!

Vale is the most down to Earth person you will ever meet and does so much for the sport and also Charity. When we talk F1 lets let’s not forget Michael Schumacher and Ayrton Senna.

Always loved Val but respect Lewis , l think the respect for each other is mutual but for me Val will always be number one.

Never mind im a rossi fan but my guess is he will do better in an F1 car than lewis could do on a moto go bike! Btw im also a lewis fan!....just saying my opinion!

Who's the guy close to Lewis Hamilton?

Why they did not do it with "Merguez"? :)))) bet Marquez will try to beat this record as well. :)))

Big boy's just want to have fun they not hurting anyone enjoy your life while you can you never no what's round the corner 💕

I can only see one motorsport icon the other cries down his radio when he can’t over take or he has tyre wobble guess which one 😀😀

I'm not seeing Rossi next to the Mercedes Benz logo??

Turn on the stopwatch, and look at the difference between lap times... 😜😎

Cosí porterà le scuse, e la tifoseria nella fórmula uno, speriamo lo faccia prima che inizi la.nuova stagione della motogp... Sono 10 anni che piange

Can't wait to see Lewis struggle to make 3 minute laps around Silverstone while Rossi pulls qualifying times in an F1. Tim Braunstein

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9 hrs ago

F1

The airwaves have been filled with smooth operator, *LOUD NOISES* and of course... Lando Norris 🤣

Here's our top 20 team radio moments from 2019 📻
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Lando's "Like, forever?" was also great.

I really enjoyed the 2019 Formula 1 season! The drivers, and teams, have been very entertaining all year! I love them!!! I can't wait for the 2020 season! I'll have to be satisfied with watching the new Netflix series on F1 when it comes on, and rewatching last years.❤️🧡💛💚💙

Missed the 'James, it's Valterri' bit! It was one of the bests 🤣

This was an unforgettable season. And a big pleasure that McLaren is back in game with this two great guys. Can't wait for march. I hope next season the Teams are closer together

Literally got goosebumps watching Pierre after that P2 finish! I won’t get into the “Smooth Operator” renditions we sing when Carlos does well, but they’re probably about as good as his. 😂

Charles "Yes" or Gasly's "WOOOO"? Either way, RIP ear drums.

Mclaren is killing it. With Sainz's and Lando's performance and the car it self. The best of the middle teams. I don't care about the front anymore, its always the same. I just wanna watch and listen to these guys. They are hilarious.

Lando and carlos 😂 they've provided some well needed entertainment this season ! 🧡

McLaren radio are awesome ! I love this guys ! Crazy !

the mclaren boys bringing home that good quality radio entertainment that we all love. 😂 😂 😂

How can you not love the McLaren drivers and team? Seriously that’s brilliant. Pretty sure the positive atmosphere is linked to the amazing results of this year. Keep pushing guys!

Last season: I feel for McLaren, must be rough. This season: God McLaren are my favourite team!

I absolutely love the McLaren ones, but my No.1 is Bottas. 😂 I guess I got an idea who he addressed it to...

Looking forward for next year. Hope the Americans fix that bumpy track 🤟

Hearing Pierre’s P2 scream still makes me happy like it did when I first heard it.

Top 20 isn't enough but still a very high quality content you got here F1! I'm proud to say that I saw it all live or live-ish *Carlos bits are recaps only*!

F1 has been brilliant this year with some amazing races, it's only fault? F1 constantly saying it's not been good 😂🤣

I love Stroll getting mad about unsafe entry and then doing the same thing 🙃

wtf it is with these ads?! OMG every 10 seconds, totally unwatchable stuff. I must be a super hardcore audience or this video went just flat out american on me 😀 🇺🇸

Norris and Sainz are absolute legends on the coms...they could’ve skipped the parts Leclerc talking to himself though 🤷🏼‍♂️

Thanks F1 that was brill !! I pay Sky a lot money to watch F1 shame they couldnt provide something as entertaining as that.............. gues all their money goes on feeding crofty!!

After a collision I really want to hear Kimi say "back in my day"....

The ones with the rain funny, oh so funny. I agree with the number one they picked. Some good team radio this year.

We all know for a fact that Kimi is the king when it comes to this but for Carlos and Lando (and they're teammates aswell) lol. Pretty hilarious

I get goosebumps everytime I hear Gasly's radio when he won P2 😀

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14 hrs ago

MotoGP

#RumbleStrip 2019 Rich Lee Draws!3">#MotoGP season recap! 🏁

🎨 Rich Lee Draws!
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Que lindo meus super heróis das pistas caracterizados. Tudo de mais bonito para todos. Deus abençoe e proteja sempre sempre todas e todos envolvidos com um esporte que é pura superação e EMOÇÃO 💜. Amo vocês ✌🌹✌.

Story of the year, Rins, Miller, Quartoraro and Vinales all coming good throughout the season. Getting stronger for 2020. Bring it on, stick it to the #93!

Time to get back in to the action #RumbleStrip

Motogp race good rider Marc, very nice👌🌹...

Story of year was Marc totally dominating. A excellent rookie year from FQ . Some good races from Mav, Dovi, Rins etc but all lacking consistency. Some brilliant races along the way but ultimately MM93 was far too good.

Best MotoGP race rider #MM93 ❤️❤️❤️❤️

Spirit for Rider MotoGp go to #MotoGp2020😘

Rossi is de best rider even still he 40+ age no one can take his place rossi luv u bro ....

💗💗💗💗💗

Why did they make Cal look like a mini wolverine! 😆

Good job marc Brilliant race along the way but ultimately marc was far too good😍😍😍😍😍😍😍😎😎😎😎😎😎😎

Ont peut la trouver la BD en français s'il vous plaît

Great art. Good job

The best comic ever....!!! Keep it up

Boring rider and boring titles and only marquez fans happy for the boring show from marquez

Excelente.... sin duda MM93 ha sido su mejor año.. y ninguno mas mantubo consistencia... se ve una buena pelea para el 2020 con buenas carreras..

👍👍👍 the best season...👏👏

Oh, This is very nice

Good job Marc King of race

Marc ❤️ my heart ....

Až budou dobří jako Valentino tak ať se ozvou teploušové. 😎

Champions forever

Can’t wait for MotoGp 2020 🍿Rins and the Marques brothers 🥇

Very, very cool!

Marc marquez 93...nice one

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