Sage Karam

INDIANAPOLIS – Jack Hawksworth scored his first win at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway but skipped his traditional “Legendary Hawk” celebration after the win.

The Sunoco Rookie of the Year candidate in the Verizon IndyCar Series teamed with Chris Cumming to win the Prototype Challenge class at the Brickyard Grand Prix on July 25 at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

“It feels pretty awesome,” Hawksworth said. “It was a lot of fun. We had a great battle with Bruno (Junqueira) and ended up with an RSR 1-2. We were both slicing through the traffic. I just got my chance and I took it. My first win of my year, and I’ll take it. I’ll just save the celebration for when I win in INDYCAR.”

Hawksworth, who led his first laps in the series during the inaugural Grand Prix of Indianapolis in May, had to fight with Junqueira throughout the final hour of the 2 hour, 45 minute race. He made his move with about five minutes remaining.

“(The fight) seemed to last an eternity because it was really a battle for 45 minutes,” Hawksworth said. “We were battling through the traffic. It was really like a game of chess. I kept asking the guys, ‘How long is left? How long is left?’ Once it got to five minutes, I knew it was time to go. 

“Fortunately (Junqueira) caught traffic and he didn’t get a great exit off (Turn) 2 there. I was strong there and I was able to get by him in (Turn) 4. It was a clear run from there until I got to a slow car on the last corner.”

Another driver who had a strong Indianapolis 500 in May also had a strong run in his first sportscar race at IMS. Sage Karam co-drove the No. 01 Daytona Prototype for Chip Ganassi Racing with Felix Sabates to a runner-up finish in the race after leading the race at the midway point.

“They say Indianapolis is good to some people and so far she’s been good to me,” said the 19-year-old from Nazareth, Pa., who has finishes of second in the Freedom 100 and ninth in the Indianapolis 500 in his previous oval starts at Indianapolis Motor Speedway. “The Chip Ganassi Racing guys really put together a masterpiece of a car for me. I would be happier if we had won, but as far as my performance and the team’s performance it was a great result.”

In all, five Indianapolis 500 starters competed in the Brickyard Grand Prix, including Hawksworth and Karam. Townsend Bell and James Davison finished fourth in the GT Daytona Class. Martin Plowman retired from the race early.