Protests of NHMS INDY Race Heard Today
Oriol Servia and his Newman/Haas Racing team believe they won the controversial Izod IndyCar Series race Aug. 14 at New Hampshire Motor Speedway. Today they get the chance to prove it.
Newman/Haas and Ganassi Racing will present their cases for the top two finishing positions in an official hearing today at the Downtown office of law firm Ice Miller. Ice Miller represents Indianapolis Motor Speedway Corp., including IndyCar.
The 9 a.m. hearing is not open to the public.
Chief steward Brian Barnhart will detail his decision to award the win to Andretti Autosport's Ryan Hunter-Reay after mistakenly restarting the race amid treacherous wet conditions.
With Danica Patrick's spinning car igniting a pileup behind the leaders, Barnhart decided it wasn't fair to count that restart. He ruled the finishing order based on the positions before that green flag.
Servia and Scott Dixon appeared to pass Hunter-Reay during the brief period of green, and they will ask the three panelists to overturn Barnhart's ruling.
In USAC, car positioning when a caution comes out reverts to the most recent green-flag lap, and that's what concerns Servia.
"They have many reasons for that," he wrote of USAC in a text message Monday to The Indianapolis Star. "Dirt (tracks), no cameras, no (scoring) timelines."
IndyCar's chief steward is afforded significant latitude in officiating races, and that might be a key factor in resolving the argument. But video replays appear to show Servia in the lead under green as Hunter-Reay struggled to gain tire traction.
Michael Andretti's team also will be allowed to defend its position at the hearing. Not known is if a decision will be announced today.