Live now
Start time
Playing for
End time
Listen live
Up next
Listen live on

‘Did not gain an advantage’: McLaughlin responds to stripped podium

Publish Date
Thu, 25 Apr 2024, 2:04pm
Scott McLaughlin. Photo / AP
Scott McLaughlin. Photo / AP

‘Did not gain an advantage’: McLaughlin responds to stripped podium

Publish Date
Thu, 25 Apr 2024, 2:04pm

Kiwi driver Scott McLaughlin has responded to his disqualification from IndyCar’s season-opening race in St Petersburg, in which his Team Penske outfit was heavily punished. 

McLaughlin, along with teammate Josef Newgarden, had their respective third and first-place finishes stripped after manipulating their cars’ push-to-pass system. 

The push-to-pass allows a driver to temporarily maximise their car’s power for a short time, intended to ensure increased overtaking on-track. 

However, a review of the St Petersburg opener found Team Penske’s drivers - including Will Power who finished fourth - used push-to-pass on race starts and restarts. 

In this instance, the Penske cars were not able to use the function until they had reached an alternate start-finish line. 

Taking to Facebook on Saturday (NZ time), though, McLaughlin accepted the penalties handed out by IndyCar but explained how the breach occurred. 

“I fully stand with every one of my teammates,” McLaughlin wrote. 

“Simply put, a mistake was made. I have the highest level of integrity, and it is important to protect both my own reputation and that of the team. 

“I was not aware of the situation with the software. In this instance, I used a single, very brief (1.9 second) deployment of push to pass in a section of the track exit of turn 9 where it is typically utilized (sic) throughout the race. 

“I hit the button out of habit, but I did not pass any cars nor did I gain any time advantage. The data which IndyCar has confirms all of this information. 

“While I accept the penalty, I want to be clear that I did not gain an advantage over my competitors.” 

All three Penske cars were handed NZ $42,100 penalties and were stripped of all prize money from the race. 

The disqualification has seen McLaughlin fall to the bottom of the IndyCar standings, with a 26th-placed finish in Long Beach earlier this week his only other result. 

The 30-year-old also finished second at IndyCar’s $1 Million Challenge, however, no points were at stake in that race. 

This story was originally published on the Herald, here

Take your Radio, Podcasts and Music with you