LONG POND, Pa. -- Carlos Munoz reclaimed the Firestone Indy Lights championship points lead by breezing to victory in the Pocono 100.
It was the third victory of the season for Munoz, driving the No. 26 Dialy-Ser car for Andretti Autosport, and fifth overall (second on an oval). He's lead all the race laps in the victories. It also was the third victory in five starts from the pole this season for the 21-year-old from Colombia.
Including bonus points for the Sunoco Pole Award and leading the most laps on the 2.5-mile tri-oval, Munoz takes a four-point lead over Sage Karam into the race next week on the streets of Exhibition Place in Toronto.
“My team, my engineers, my mechanics, everyone did an amazing job giving me this great car," Munoz said. "I was flat out the whole way and it’s really nice to be back in victory circle after our weekend in Iowa (finished eighth after starting on pole).
"I was really motivated to come here and race on this oval. Looking forward to continue our momentum in Toronto.”
Behind Munoz, who won by 16.2247 seconds, Karam in the No. 8 Schmidt Peterson with Curb-Agajanian battled teammate Gabby Chaves for second in the final 10 laps of the caution-free race. They traded P2 four times, with Karam overtaking Chaves' No. 7 car in Turn 1 on Lap 39. Chaves crossed the finish line .7280 of a second behind Karam.
"We've raced each other for so long -- since we were in go-karts -- and know each other well," said Karam, of nearby Nazareth, Pa., who had won the past two races to climb into the points lead. "I wanted to bring home a win for all the fans here today, but Carlos was so fast that I couldn't catch him."
Chaves recorded his sixth consecutive top-five finish and is third in the standings (39 points back) in his first Firestone Indy Lights season.
Zach Veach, driving the No. 12 K12 car for Andretti Autosport, finished fourth and Jack Hawksworth was fifth in the No. 77 Schmidt Peterson with Curb-Agajanian car.
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