06/13 09:56 CDT Askew gets call from old team as emergency replacement
Askew gets call from old team as emergency replacement
By JENNA FRYER
AP Auto Racing Writer
DETROIT (AP) --- Oliver Askew, like most race car drivers, never goes to a
track without his helmet --- one never knows when a team might need an
So he was ready when Arrow McLaren SP needed a replacement for Felix Rosenqvist
on Sunday at the Raceway at Belle Isle Park. Rosenqvist was hospitalized
following a violent crash a day earlier; Askew drove 12 races last year in the
No. 7 but was fired at the end of the season and replaced by Rosenqvist.
The only thing he needed was the rest of his uniform: Askew was given the Arrow
firesuit that Juan Pablo Montoya wore two weeks ago in the Indianapolis 500 and
borrowed a pair of racing shoes from Alex Palou.
He will start 23rd in the 25-driver field after Sunday morning's 10-minute
qualifying session marred his first laps in the car. Askew had never before
raced the temporary street course constructed in a downtown Detroit public
park, so his qualifying laps were nothing more than a reconnaissance mission to
refamiliarize himself with the car and get a look at the bumpy, 2.35-mile,
"There's nothing like qualifying first thing in the morning, it beats coffee,
for sure," said Askew, who was at the track until about 1 a.m. as Arrow McLaren
SP repaired Rosenqvist's car for Sunday's race.
He said he received tips from both teammate Pato O'Ward and Rosenqvist, who was
expected to be released from the hospital and potentially return to the track
to watch the second race.
Askew was fired at the end of last season in part because the 24-year-old hid
concussion symptoms following his crash in the Indianapolis 500. He tried to
race through the symptoms and finally saw a specialist only after his
performance had plummeted.
He is now seeking a new full-time ride.
Josef Newgarden won the 12th pole of his career in the qualifying session,
which ended abruptly when Santino Ferrucci crashed hard into the wall. It put
Rahal Letterman Lanigan on the clock with roughly 90 minutes to repair the
damage before the start of the race.
Arrow McLaren SP has been vague on what caused Rosenqvist to crash at what the
driver estimated to be 100 mph into a tire barrier. It appeared his throttle
had stuck and the impact was so violent, Rosenqvist drove through six rows of
tires and bent the retaining wall.
He was hospitalized for evaluation but appeared only to be sore from the impact.
Arrow McLaren SP said only that an investigation of the crash "eliminated
driver error or any issues related to Chevrolet systems and software, including
involving the throttle system.
"The sequence of events has been clearly established and the root cause
identified as a singular, nonrecurrent mechanical fault. The remedy has already
been implemented and the team is confident that the issue is now fully
This story has been corrected to show it is Newgarden's 12th career pole, not
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